Archive for ‘New Zealand’

August 3, 2010

Red Star Luxury Burgers, New Zealand

by minibites

After beating the fatigue after our Treble Cone battle, we explore the town of Wanaka for Red Star, Fergburger’s arch rival. Rocking up with the expectation that it is another mass production line with burgers pumping out every single minute, I was surprised that it was a little corner burger joint run by a few local Gen Y’s.

It was refreshing to see the fact that the menu had a variety of burger options which was a good break from the usual Fergburger and potato fries. My choice was the Five-O, a grilled chicken burger with bacon, pineapples, edam and bbq sauce with a side serving of kumara (a type of sweet potato) fries and aioli. Despite the wait, my burger was delicious with generous fillings with a big dollop of sauce tucked inside two cosy warm buns. My foodie companions have also raved about the Beef Mofo and Chicken Satay… definitely next on the agenda.

Final verdict? All things naughty too many times in one week is never good. Although there is a divide in the group with this burger battle; Fergburger has this undupliacatable sauce and when caught at the right time of day (try at 10 in the morning) then the bread is wonderfully toasted, the wait is minimal and there’s a cosy bench for you to enjoy your burger. But this round, Red Star just stole my heart with softer bread, happier lettuce leaves and more creative burger combinations.

Red Star Luxury Burgers
26 Ardmore St
Queenstown, New Zealand

August 3, 2010

Kia Ora!

by minibites

Another short hiatus while I was snowboarding away in New Zealand but I’m back! Unfortunately I didn’t have too many food adventures since the trip was shorter and only in Queenstown, so our diets were primarily occupied with quick junk food fix after a big day on the slopes. Back to reality and ready to indulge in fresh fruits, salad and more salad…

September 25, 2009

WLG Pop Up Restaurant – Jacob Brown

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It’s been the recent buzz and finally it has come! Wellington’s best have come across the border to share some of their culinary delights. Reigniting the Bayswater Brasserie which was once a upon a time a cocktail bar, WLG’s second night was led by Jacob Brown, executive chef of The Larder. Enter into a room filled with fresh produce, framed landscape photographs of Wellington, NZ accents and a lovely buzz and vibe of people wining and dining. We take a seat at the long wooden communal table with everyone’s elbows touching. Our waitress hustles over and takes our order as we decide on our mains; a choice between venison, snapper and a vegetarian option.

Shared entree platter

We start with a shared entree platter with a mixture of delights from fried goat cheese balls sitting on top of a chutney, battered white bait “fries”, Regal King salmon served with wasabi pannacotta and Lot 8 spiced olives. Feeling a bit under the weather all week, my favourite was the salmon and wasabi pannacotta which managed to sneak through my blocked nose and temperamental taste buds. The goat cheese balls also deserve a mention, with a wonderful crispy outer and gooey melted inside.

Venison Wellington

Grilled Snapper

My companions are tempted into the Vension Wellington which is a short venison loin, wrapped cosily in puff pastry served with portobello mushrooms, smoked bacon, sage and peppercorn sauce. Tender and juicy meatiness. I opt for a lighter option, the grilled snapper that is served with some Cloudy Bay Diamond clams, mountains of baby peas, fennel and crayfish butter. It’s deliciously light and fresh.

Bomb Alsaka

The creme da la creme has to be dessert, and I love how dessert becomes the main star attraction of a three course meal. To keep the surprise alive, I keep my eyes glued to what is in front of me all night, so when the waitress brings around a spiky snow dome floating in a raspberry consomme, I am in awe. Digging inside the dome, it encases a large scoop of chocolate ganache ice cream on top of a chocolate cookie like disc. Superbly sweet but so, so good.

Jacob has finished his leg of the race, so I’m very tempted to revisit and see what the other chefs will dish up! Bookings are recommended but there are a few tables left for walk-ins.

WLG is a pop-up restaurant here in Sydney from the 14th-26th September 2010.

32 Bayswater Road
Kings Cross, Sydney

July 28, 2009

World Bar, New Zealand

by minibites

I have never been a fan of “pub” or “bar” food and this bar reaffirmed that idea. Starving after a 8 hour snowboarding day, we stumbled past this venue in the central shopping hotspot and thought, “why not!”. The food was bland and quite honestly, something I could have dished up if I had the effort, energy and ingredients (We found it incredibly difficult to find good quality food resources around Queenstown! Grocery shopping was a nightmare). The others who had chose a steak or ribs as their main were thinking quite the same.

Drinks on the other hand were brilliantly cheap. Happy hour was from 9-10pm and included most of the teapot cocktails, meaning half price teapots! It was good nightcap for many of us…

World Bar
27 Shotover Rd
Queenstown, New Zealand

July 28, 2009

Fergburger, New Zealand

by minibites

As Mos Burger was Japan’s burger, Fergburger was described as New Zealand’s Burger. Our house was conveniently located 5 minutes away from the main shopping village so we were all grinning ear to ear when we found this place without a dilemma.

The lines for this restaurant is amazing – most probably due to fact that there is only one in store in New Zealand and it’s snow bunny galore. People still in their snow pants are cuddled outside the heaters in the courtyard, either eagerly waiting for a table or their take away order. For a big group like ours (10), I definitely recommend doing a phone order and eating in the comfort and warmth of your own home.

The burger itself is enormous, which kept all the boys throughly happy.. up until they were thumping their chest as they felt like a heart attack coming along. The burger didn’t live up to the stories of what I’ve heard – the patty was rather dry and the buns were mediocre; the two main things I personally look for in a good burger. Although, there is something about the sauce, Fergburger has defined “their” sauce as much as how McDonald’s has their mac sauce,  and it’s probably the aioli that has saved them.

42 Shotover St
Queenstown, New Zealand