It's the last edition of Metro's food news for the entire year. There are some Christmas shindigs and a couple more markets for you guys, plus a few new places to try out before they shutter their windows for the holidays.
Food news: 17-24 December
This Thursday, the last market of the year finishes up with more Christmas cheer, including festive lighting, food trucks, Santa’s grotto and, apparently, the tallest chimney in Auckland. You can also grab a bite at the restaurants in the area if you feel like a sit-down affair.
Thursday 19 December | Victoria Park Market
A little end-of-year Christmas party which coincides with Epic’s 14th birthday. Expect 10 beers on tap, food specials and maybe a slice of birthday cake.
Friday 20 December | Vultures’ Lane Craft Bar
Tunes from Adornolife, special sharing items like fried chicken and caviar with crème fraiche and chive dip (high and low – into it), natural wine and champagne. From 9pm-late for one last hurrah before Christmas.
Saturday 21 December | Bar Céleste
If you like to leave your Christmas shopping right down to the wire, this Found/Made market was made for you. Beer (possibly even Metro’s very own Matchy Matchy?), pre-loved clothes, posters, comics, ceramics, flowers, jewellery and tasty ramen from Miso-Ra.
Sunday 22 December | Urbanaut Brewing Co
Hallertau have opened a new brewpub & biergarten in Clevedon, housed in an impressively-sized building, with plenty of room for the kids and summer holiday gatherings.
26 Clevedon-Kawakawa Rd, Clevedon
Ramen chain Daruma now have a stall in the Atrium on Elliot food court – a good lunchtime option for inner-city workers.
21-25 Elliot Street, central city
Puglia Ristorante Italiano
Kingsland fried chicken slingers ARCADE have sadly closed, but there’s a new eatery in its place, this time serving up traditional Italian fare.
509 New North Rd, Kingsland
What we ate this week
Jean Teng and Alex Blackwood
Lilius is a fine diner, but it doesn’t always feel like one – in a good way. The service is friendly and casual, conversational in a way which doesn’t make you feel obligated. Food here is plated in that slightly overwrought way you associate with fine dining, several elements spaced apart by jus’ and plops of sauces bridging them together. Sometimes-unconventional flavour pairings worked – a few inches of octopus braised then grilled on the same plate as a salty chicken wing with the bones removed. Good, unexpected cooking. – JT
19 Khyber Pass Rd, Grafton
Sad hotdog from Urban Gourmet:
Dry bread, solid cheese
An ok sausage at least
Drowned in sauce please - AB
They’re yuck and somehow too sweet and too bitter all at once and I have never met a good one and you are all lying to yourselves because they look good on an Instagram story. They taste like orange-scented kitchen spray. Stop. [Counterpoint: An Aperol Spritz is the PERFECT summer drink. Is it time to restart the spritz wars for the southern hemisphere's summer? Much to think about. - Ed]- AB
Whau strawberry real fruit ice cream
There were proper chunks of tart, juicy frozen strawberry amongst the ice cream and that’s my measure of a good real fruit ice cream. - AB
Every time a new Malaysian restaurant sprouts up in Auckland, you can be damn sure you’ll find me there within the week. Enak Malaysian comes from the owners of Panmure’s Blossom Court, with a similar menu. I had the pan mee, with their house-made noodles, and it was a very deep-bowl of salty, meaty broth, one which would only have been made better by more anchovies. More anchovies, please! But a good Dom Road addition. – JT
248A Dominion Rd, Mt Eden