We may be slowly but surely saying goodbye to summer, however there’s no reason to be despondent with so many enticing culinary offerings from our favourite restaurants. From must-book events to delicious new dishes to try, here’s all you need to know about the local food scene for April.
A Bluffie good deal at Saint Alice
Get down to Saint Alice before it’s too late, for the sundrenched Viaduct Harbour eatery’s limited-time-only midday deal: a dozen free Bluff oysters with every lunch table booking. Having run throughout March, this offer will be on for at least the next two weeks but Bluffie fans better get in quick, because it’s nearing the end of the season. The promotion is available Monday to Friday, for bookings between 12PM and 3PM, and refers to one dozen oysters per table (not per person). Bookings must be made at least one day prior to booking, Bluff oysters subject to availability and will be replaced with others if not available. To book, visit www.saintalice.co.nz
Ostro’s high tea is back
A Sunday session never looked so chic, thanks to Ostro’s famous high tea. Back by popular demand, the high tea is offered in collaboration with Veuve Clicquot, and the innovative range of scrumptious morsels takes this far above your typical tea-and-cake affair. You can pre-order to enjoy at home, or settle in for an afternoon framed by Ostro’s iconic waterfront view. Bookings essential at www.seafarers.co.nz/ostro
Try something entirely new at Gochu
In an exciting new event series, modern Korean hotspot Gochu will be running Gochu Test Kitchen on the first Tuesday of every month for the foreseeable future, starting on Tuesday 6th of April. Co-owner and Executive Chef Jason Kim will be playing around with fun dishes that will, most likely, only be served on the night, with the menu kept as a complete surprise until the day of. Expect to see exciting Korean dishes you won’t find anywhere else between here and the back streets of Seoul, and Head Bartender Harry Alexander will be whipping up some special tipples as well. Test Kitchen at Gochu, $45 per person, first Tuesday of every month starting Tuesday, 6th of April. To book, visit www.gochugotyou.co.nz
Make a wish and be in to win at Azabu Mission Bay’s Roku Gin Garden
Celebrating love while nodding to its modern Japanese roots, Azabu is hosting its own interpretation of a Tanabata ‘Star’ Festival. This traditional Japanese occurrence celebrates love with lively decorations and wishes written on long, narrow strips of paper, which are then tied to a ‘wishing tree’. Purchase a Roku Cocktail and place a wish on Azabu Mission Bay’s tree, and you could be into win some excellent prizes — including vouchers for Azabu Mission Bay, a Yu Mei handbag, Roku Gin prize packs and other instant giveaways. Roku Wishing Tree at Azabu Mission Bay is on until 11th of April. www.azabu.co.nz/mission-bay
A bread spectacular at Lillius
Eden Terrace-based fine dining restaurant Lillius is well known for its excellent sourdough, and the eatery is capitalising on this reputation with a special bread-centric brunch event on Sunday 11th of April. Crafting a five-course menu using their sourdough, the team will take diners through a breakfast degustation to remember — far more elevated than your typical eggs and toast, mind. Breadustation Brunch, $75 per person, Sunday 11th of April. Open from 11AM, last booking at 2PM. To book, visit www.lillius.co.nz
Get cracking at Crab Shack Auckland’s annual boil-up
Roll up your sleeves, don your bib, and tuck in to seafood as far as the eye can see at this sell-out event, back for another year. Complemented with live music and a dedicated oyster section, The Crab Shack Boil-Up is a fun and family-friendly dining atmosphere, with eight sessions throughout the day. As it does sell-out, bookings are strongly recommended — head to Eventfinda for tickets. The Crab Shack Boil Up, Saturday 24th of April. Tickets are $110 and feed up to four people, or two-to-three with bigger appetites. www.crabshack.co.nz
The places to be for a fast yet fantastic lunch
Conceptualised especially for the busy worker, Botswana Butchery’s ‘Devour in the Hour‘ lunch might be speedy but it does not scrimp on flavour. Choose between two or three courses, for $45 or $55 per person, with both options including a flute of Prosecco, or a glass of Chardonnay or Pinot Noir. Harbourside Ocean Bar Grill will also have you sorted for that midday meal, with its Lavish Lunch at $49 for two-courses, or three-courses for $59 — plus, the same aforementioned drinks offering to pair them with.
To book, visit www. botswanabutchery.co.nz and www.harbourside.co
Top tipples and wonderful new waffles at Little Culprit
One of our favourite inner-city bars has refreshed its offering and we can’t wait to head there for an after-work drink and a snack. New to its menu of signature savoury waffles are a black fig and goat’s curd; a cured pork, peach and mozzarella, and a duck confit, dark cherry version. Washed down with one of Little Culprit’s inventive house cocktails, we’d happily while away an evening in this cosy, classy spot. www.littleculprit.co.nz
New openings to check out
Remuera finally has a neighbourhood eatery to shout about, thanks to the opening of contemporary Mediterranean restaurant Siso. A beautiful, cosy interior with plenty of space, not to mention an utterly delicious menu makes this a must-visit. Take your next tipple at new bar Our Land Is Alive, Cordis Hotels new resident watering hole. Celebrating all that makes New Zealand beautiful, find a curated food and drinks offering that shines a light on local. Those after a caffeine hit need look no further than new coffee cutie Prime, which has set up residence in Grey Lynn. With a simple yet well-executed concept, it’s the perfect spot for a weekday pick-me-up.
Dishes we love
Samak nayeh market fish, radicchio, coriander, pomegranate from Gemmayze Street: These fresh, vinegary rolls are both beautiful and delicious.
Burnt onion cream, marinated chard and parmesan pizza from Clay: The bustling K’ Rd wine bar now offers at least five sourdough pizzas on its succinct menu, and this vegetarian rendition is fantastic.
Ice cream sandwich with banana parfait, hazelnut streusel, whipped dulcey, and feuilletine biscuit from Euro: The ideal end to a meal of mouthwatering sharing plates, Euro’s new dessert is one for fans of bannoffee flavours.