Spice up your life!

A lovely ex Welly friend living in Auckland advised me to try this place. However of course you know me, my foodie hit list is as long as my arm so it wasn’t at the top of it. Yet we did end up here due to being rejected by five other restaurants on a Saturday night- ugh.  Not for bad behaviour but they were all full or couldn’t accommodate us until 830pm. Ahem. We are Nanas and healthy so we eat early. Initially we were also turned away here so Burger Burger was looking promising. But girlfriend suggested to the snooty maitre’d that how about us sitting at the bar. I’m not sure why he didn’t offer this to start with but geez it was just perfect. Continue reading

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Superbe! 

My dear Auckland friend Juliet, recommended Paris Butter as a great place to visit with my Welly girlfriends. I was so excited to read a great review in the Saturday Auckland Herald. So I knew we were hipsters and on to it!

Located in Herne Bay, this was the former Vinnie’s ; an Auckland institution that I unfortunately never got to visit. Au revoir Vinnie’s, Bonjour Paris Kitchen. I text hubby’s boss who’s a Herne Bay local to say Hi and he was overseas and thought I was in Paris. Well I kinda was, but Auckland Paris.

The decor is DDG ( drop-dead gorgeous) with the most beautiful Laurent Perrier champagne bucket sitting on the counter with stunning glasses, to the mirrors, flowers, stunning lamps and chandeliers, mirrors, greenery, cushions, and duck-egg booth seating There are various different areas to sit in which I love as it breaks up the restaurant. I love the area near the cellar down the back but was glad we sat in the main dining room. It was sunny but a little fresh so we chose to eat indoors, yet some punters braved it outside, with a nana blanket provided if need-be.

As it was Mother’s Day, they treated us to a glass of bubbles which was a lovely start to our experience. We loved the sound of the lovely juices on offer but instead opted for coffees. Yah they could satisfy my dairy-free request of an almond milk mocha. The other gals had a lovely flat white and long black. The coffees are small though, unlike Wellington and they asked us did we want single or double strength? Um all Wellingtonians are accustomed to double shots without question!

As for the brunch menu, I was so tempted to do the steak and pommies-frites but thought 9am was a little early so I settled on some boudin-noir ( black pudding) with fried eggs and onion salad. The onion salad didn’t spin my wheels so I asked to substitute it for some frisée green salad. Our lovely waitress explained it was actually an onion jam but was more than happy to add some greens. Each mouthful was so delicious as was the presentation. The other two ladies were happy with their salmon and scrambled eggs and the French Farmer’s assiette was chokka with tomato, boiled egg, salad, pork mousse and terrine. Other items that featured were the basic baguette with pastries and jam/Nutella or a granola chia pudding, or a more the more substantial goat’s cheese tartine, truffled fromage omelette, Croque Monsieur or duck cassoulet. Of course they place a wee basket of crunchy, fresh baguette on your table that is irrestible and needed to mop your sauce up on your plate.

Service was excellent until we put through a second order of coffees.  The wait started to impinge on our shopping time. They finally arrived just before we were about to ask if the order had got misplaced. Phew.

Apart from the brunch menu, they do offer lunch and dinner menus and they take reservations. Loved it here and would return in a heart beat. Merci Paris Buerre! A bientot avec mon Mari!

Niue; a hidden gem.

Secluded, safe, and serene, would be words to sum up this beautiful Pacific island. Only 3.5 hrs flight with Air New Zealand weekly from Auckland, Niue cannot be compared with any other island. It’s so unique. The scuba-diving, snorkeling and fishing is world-class due to the visibility. Crystal-clear or gin-like warm waters and stunning sunsets. Sssh this is our secret. Continue reading

A slice of ‘curry’ heaven!

I’ve suddenly gravitated back to Indian cuisine. I used to make Indian curries from scratch years ago, but one day hubby decided he didn’t like Indian, so strangely I stopped eating it too. However halleluyah, he’s seen the light, after trying a curry in Fiji, and now is ok with it again.   Roll on a trip to India to do a comparison. Anyway I digress. Curry Heaven has just opened up in Bond Street and it’s already a gold mine. Continue reading