Mar 18, 2022 Metro Eats
Our new issue is out in the world. I’m a fan, but I guess I would say that. I wrote a review for Karangahape restaurant Alta ; Henry covered Goldie, the new roast shop on Dominion Rd, and Sunita revisited old fave Grand Harbour. There’s a really beautiful cover image shot by Mataara Stokes of Teremoana Rapley, who was due to perform at the Auckland Arts Festival at her show Daughter of a House Girl before it was cancelled. It’s accompanied by a story from new arts editor Lana Lopesi, who has started penning her own weekly(ish) newsletter called Metro Arts – a great read and easy way to keep up with the arts scene in Auckland, even if you’re not specifically into art. If you’d like to be added to the list, you can always flick me an email and I’ll make sure you’re on there.
This week, there’s been some talk about schnitzel on the bird website, Twitter.com. I thought about minding my own business, letting everyone have a good time worshipping one of the worst dishes I’ve ever had the displeasure of eating, but who are we kidding? I’m me, and schnitzel is schnitzel, and I dislike it greatly. The first time I properly had schnitzel was quite recently, at a German restaurant in Avondale. I didn’t have much experience with schnitzel (except for a veal milanese at SkyCity restaurant Gusto at the Grand), except I like tonkatsu fine, a Japanese dish that evolved out of Europe’s breaded meats, presumably like schnitzel. But, sorry, readers – it sucks. Meat pounded so thin that you basically pound away all the textural joy of eating meat, and then cooked until every single atom of juice has evaporated away into the air until all you can taste is eggy breadcrumbs. The dryness of the chicken breast (a cut of chicken I avoid at all costs) saddened me. The lack of flavour, in the breadcrumbs and then in the creamy mushroom sauce that accompanied it, made me long for hot sauce. The sameness of the dish, in its all-encompassing, unrelenting glory, had me dreaming of rice – something to break up the experience of tasteless crunch. What is schnitzel without the nostalgic experience of growing up eating schnitzel? It’s this. Soz.
However, if anyone would like to prove me wrong, I am fully willing to take bribes from Big Schnitzel and free schnitzel packs from concerned parties. (Kidding. Kind of.)
There have been reports that Frasers , an absolute institution in Mount Eden Village, is planning to permanently close. If it’s true, it’s a real loss for the community. When I was a kid, my sisters (who are 10 and 12 years older than me) were always at Frasers, chilling there after university and telling me how good the cheesecake was – but never taking away a slice for me (boo). So… hope it’s not true!
Hees Garden is also closing. The primarily Cantonese restaurant has been around since I was young, serving roasts and yum cha, passing ownership through multiple families. It will permanently close on 27 March. Similarly, Four Seasons in Epsom (also a Cantonese restaurant) is closing on 3 April. Very sad!
The second Cook for Ukraine bake sale is on this weekend (Saturday) at 19 Williamson Ave, Ponsonby. If you’re a baker who would like to contribute, drop Felicity a DM and let her know what you’re bringing along – they’ll have to be dropped off on Saturday from 9-11am. They raised $9,425 the first time around!
Martinborough gin distillery Lighthouse Gin has just released its first new gin in 11 years – Lighthouse Barrel Aged Gin.
If you’re in isolation and/or avoiding crowded public places to lower your risk of catching the ‘rona, GoodFor is offering same-day delivery if you order before midday. Free if your purchase is over $60!
Our new restaurant reviewer Sunita (whose first review you can read in the new issue), had a great meal at Canteen Bali. “I just had an extremely tasty dinner from the food truck Canteen Bali, which is parked up outside The Beer Spot in Panmure for the week (the truck parked outside changes every week – next week it will be the White Lady). Looks like Canteen Bali is moving to The Beer Spot in Huapai next week. I had the Sambal Fried Chicken bowl, which was delish! Very substantial, nicely spiced, chunky well marinated pieces of juicy chicken, fresh coleslaw, tasty (if not particularly hot) chilli sauce. Perfect stomach lining for a drinking sesh.”
It’s hot cross bun season, obviously, and the city is awash with them. As we are very fickle people, the novelty items are starting to roll in (like the Pics Peanut Butter ones done in collaboration with New World). I got some from Bread and Butter (#gifted), and its chocolate ones are genuinely so good, because I’m a heathen that will 100% opt for the chocolate HxB any day of the week (or time of the year).
I’ve had quite a few cans of beer recently that do not taste like beer, including the new Liberty Brewery raspberry roller milkshake sour (#gifted) that reminded me of seltzer and the Garage Project All in a Muddle Strawberry, Miso and Black Pepper sour, which had very much the same vibe. So if you’re after something that leans into that, these are some good options.