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Metro Eats! — Friday 21 April

Are we due the salad renaissance?

Metro Eats! — Friday 21 April

Apr 21, 2023 Metro Eats


At Metro, we often talk about the lack of places in which you can go out for a nice dinner where they serve “health” food (or what we may perceive healthy food to be), due to current food culture’s tendency towards comfort and indulgence. From what I understand, this wasn’t the case maybe 20 or 30 years ago, when various health food movements meant that some restaurants who leaned into this genre could thrive (there was, for example, apparently a vegetarian restaurant called Musical Knives in Ponsonby which embodied this very thing).

However, I can feel that the Big Salad might be making a comeback. I feel it in the air. I remember looking at the menu for the new Remuera bistro, Spring, seeing they had a $34 tuna salad offering for lunch, and thinking… What?

As an enthusiastic user of the app Tik Tok, I’ve seen an increase in recipe content that are all various rifts on “salads that are actually good”; as a consumer of the internet, I’ve seen articles like this that analyses the beauty of a well-composed salad – the defence of which that, with enough yum crispy bits, even something as boring as a salad can be elevated to greatness. I feel that, soon enough, people might start being like, Maybe salad is actually good, and is something I want to eat with my oat flat white?

If this is all true, which it very much might not be, I do not think I will be participating. The Elaines of the world can have the Big Salad, and I guess I will just have a sandwich.

– Jean


What’s Happening


Cazador is turning 35 years old (or, as they said, they did last year – but can now finally celebrate it). On Monday 24 April, it’s honouring three decades of menus by serving dishes spanning Barbara and Tony’s classics (now co-owner Dariush Lolaiy’s parents) in the late ‘80s to Dariush’s first from a decade ago. Bookings here.

Kier Ibañez is popping up at Roses for one night, over two sessions, on Friday 28 April. As Ophelia writes, “Kier is an enthusiastic person – and so is his food. He doesn’t do anything in half measures, everything is abundant, joyful and bold. Kier’s dishes are an amalgamation of his life, elevated iterations of his Filipino roots, friendly and celebratory just like him.” I have eaten Kier’s food before at one of his previous Long Tables and think you’ll have a good time if you go. The day after, Petra Galler (of Butter Butter Butter – she recently also released a cookbook called Butter Butter) is serving up pissaladière, crepe cakes and babkas from 10am – sold out.

Harvest Deli has been in Auckland for a week, serving up sammies out of Wynyard Pavillion till this afternoon. There’s still time! 17 Jellicoe St.

Also – It’s your last chance to eat at the Balmoral Street Food Market tonight!If you find yourself with some spare time in the middle of the day for a long lunch, Vavasour and Andiamo have teamed up to present a $50pp autumnal set menu, which you can pair with Vavasour wine. On for the rest of April.


What’s Good


I had dinner at KL Cafe in Glen Eden recently. If you like your Hainanese chicken with dark meat only, you’re in luck here – they seem to only use the thigh and the leg, even for the full size portion, which means every piece is silky and tender. And a slice of durian crepe cake to take home is, of course, a  non-negotiable in my family.

I went to OOH-FA last night and had half of two very good pizzas – the pepperoni special (which I recommend getting and then drizzling some of the provided chilli oil over) and the butternut, with a white base. I enjoyed both, but I particularly liked the sweetness of the butternut squash with the tomato-less garlicky savouriness.

My favourite tacos at Mr Taco in the city are the chicharron, spicy  – pork skin that is fatty and gelatinous. It’s a special but is on the blackboard often enough that I would chance it if you were wanting to try it.


What’s New


Ark Coffee has reopened in Takapuna with a bit of a new look and a renewed focus on the coffee (which is, as always, roasted in-house). This was one of my personal favourites on the North Shore, so it’s nice to see it back! You can also find homewares store Long Vacation in there too.

Another oat milk brand!

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