Apr 22, 2022 Metro Eats
Last night I watched the first episode of that new TVNZ show Snack Masters, which is one of those foodie feel-good reality shows in the same genre as Netflix’s Is It Cake?, in that everything is too sweet to bear and you’re feeling vaguely guilty about its consumption. Snack Masters is local, though, so it’s sorta fun that I know/know of most of the chefs competing – and, of course, the “snacks” they’re trying to recreate. Each episode seems to champion one big food company or another; the first was Tip Top, which saw the chefs try to recreate the Tip Top Boysenberry Trumpet (which I confess I’ve never tried, oops). The next episode is the McDonald’s Show.
The challenges are, like, of a very specific level of product sponsorship (we even get taken to the Tip Top factory to watch the trumpets being made), so the goal of the chefs is to try and recreate the trumpet exactly, with the winner the one having most emulated the product in question. Dariush Lolaiy of Cazador and Ganesh Raj of The Tasting Shed were the first chefs up, and for 20 minutes we mostly just watched them make waffle after waffle, sandwiched between cast iron pans and Breville waffle irons. My flatmate, who makes ice cream, was particularly concerned about their lack of investment in the ice cream side of things (we don’t even see Ganesh make his!).
But, you know, it’s meant to be light and breezy and that’s mostly what it is – if anything it’s a treat to see the restaurants and personalities being featured on screen. I just think it’s a supremely stupid missed opportunity to cast these talented chefs and then not give them a better brief (like putting their own spin on the snack, which would probably have resulted in Dariush making some sort of parfait thing with a boysenberry ripple and crackly tuile). I guess it would have been too much for Tip Top to admit on screen that another dish is better than theirs (all 3 judges were from the Tip Top factory), but would have made for a more interesting show.
Hope you get to eat lots of yum things this long weekend,
Everyday Wine is at Slabs Pizza today, offering tap wines by Alpine Wine, BK Wines and Still Life at $10 a glass. From 12-9pm.
Forest is hosting a taco pop-up this Saturday 23 April between 5-8pm. No bookings, but you can sit in (or takeaway). All plant-based!
Another taco pop-up – Ragtag is going to Ozone, slinging duck fat tortillas from 5pm-late on the 22-23 April and 29-30 April. Lobster tacos! Raw fish! Fried chicken! With wine from Three Fates (who are great!).
There’s another Passa Passa pop-up, this time at Garage Project, on Saturday 23 April from 12pm to sold out. NGL the menu sounds good – think pizza fritta with hot honey and confit garlic mushrooms, and cacio e pepe arancini.
Sandos, coffee, vinyl, natural wine! There’s a Hero Sandwich House x Atomic x Barcita collab this Sunday 24 at Candela’s new bar out back. From 2pm-6pm, no bookings, walk-ins only.
The Great Toastie Takeover has swung around again, with participating restaurants from all over New Zealand. You can find the Auckland one’s here. Goldie has this vegetarian one that is crusted in panko and then deep fried (??) and the Burgernaut one looks super extra (it’s topped with beef tallow popcorn).
Metro fave Coffee Pen are reprinting its sold-out cookbook Pen to fundraise for Ukraine, with all proceeds going to ADRA. The pre-orders open today, until noon 22 May. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org directly for orders.
Plus: Metro x Cloudy Bay Wonderscape
Remember how I wrote about that Wonderscape event last week? Well, that’s sold out – but, if you missed out, there’s still a way to get a slice of that magic. Three limited edition Wonderscape at Home packages will cater for you to recreate a Wonderscape long lunch at home, from the Entertainers Edition (Two bottles of Cloudy Bay wine, menu and placecard templates for four, plus an Art of Entertaining Guide by Friends of Cloudy Bay) for $125, to the Tablescape Edition, which includes all that, plus a set of four bespoke Cloudy Bay tableware by In the Roundhouse. Find out more here.
I ordered an Uber Eats from Paradise cos I was feeling ravenous after the Top 50 wine tasting last week and forgot just how good their curries are – the chicken saagwala was delicious. They really should warn a girl though that their mains do not come with rice; I had to make some and delay my feast by 20 minutes.
Vaniyé Patisserie in Parnell sometimes sells khao tom mud (sticky rice banana), made by Sonia’s mum, and I got to try one recently. I am not a fan of banana (or apples, please fight me) but this was so moreish – all that wonderful fragrance from the banana leaves it was wrapped in, plus perfect sticky-rice chewy gelatinous texture. Keep an eye on the Instagram to see when it’ll come up again.
Henry had the spicy miso pork udon at Udon Works and said that he, quote, “loved it.”
I went to Chow Foo in Albany, a fairly new restaurant which also has a branch in Pakuranga. My parents went for yum cha the week prior and said it was great. I went for dinner and enjoyed myself – it felt like old-school Cantonese, down to the aunty who basically ordered for you, and the kids from two tables down running around the restaurant playing hide and seek and annoying everyone.
I got sent some Duck Island ice cream (#gifted) to mark the release of five new flavours available in supermarket tubs. My favourite has been the pecan butterscotch – not too sweet (the highest of praises).
Yet another strike against my most hated dish of all time, schnitzel – Simon went to Der Metz and said that 50% of his dining party threw up in the restaurant bathrooms due to an excess of schnitzel consumption.
Japanese restaurant Waku Waku opened a couple nights ago, from executive chef Makoto Tokuyama (Cocoro) and head chef Lucas Lee. It’s hidden down an alleyway in Remuera, next to Italian restaurant Spiga and is a lovely little discovery.
Italian restaurant/bar/cafe Bossi has opened today in downtown Auckland on 10 Commerce St. There looks like there will be plenty of bread, pasta and deli meat.
I just drove past a new cafe, Once More, at 182 Symonds St in Eden Terrace.
It looks like Ockhee is set to open its new outpost in the central city soon – we’ve heard that it’ll be a different concept from Ockhee altogether, probably more catering towards the fast city lunch crowd. Probably easiest to keep an eye on Instagram for updates.
There’s a new Asian retail shop on Dominion Rd selling mainly snacks called Snack Lab (there’s a couple more around Auckland). I grabbed a couple of Lay’s flavours – Cucumber and Roasted Fish, both of which I recommend. They also sell dog snacks (treats), which Simon got some of for his dog Baxter.