Reviews

The Larder

The Larder

In the day­time, The Larder’s plain decor and food cab­in­ets suit its descrip­tion as a diner or cof­fee shop, but after dark it has lofti­er ambi­tions. After all, few cof­fee shops start the meal with an amuse-bouche, but we were served demi­tasses of sweet­corn soup with pars­­ley-infused olive oil. The emphas­is was on ‘sweet’, though […]

Let’s Active

Let’s Active

The first pas­sen­ger we put in the rear seats of the new BMW 2 Series Act­ive Tour­er promptly fell asleep before we cleared Ngaur­anga Gorge. “This is good,” I thought. “Peace and quiet all the way to Waik­an­ae.” On the return jour­ney, pas­sen­ger 1 swapped places with pas­sen­ger 2, mean­ing the 12-year-old could play with […]

Three-in-one

Three-in-one

To cel­eb­rate the inter­na­tion­al launch of the new M‑series, the BMW people gave me a choice between the new M3 — the four-door sedan ver­sion — or the M4, worth about $10k more but with two few­er doors. Know­ing that at least some of the test kilo­metres would be done with two excited pas­sen­gers demanding […]

Tom’s May Café

Rel­at­ive new­comers Maranui and Spruce Goose might get the views and the queues, but Ele­ments is still quietly serving brunch and lunch to Lyall Bay loc­als. The menu is hearty yet soph­ist­ic­ated, offer­ing goat’s‑cheese soufflé and a salad of bal­sam­ic roast pear, fig, baby spin­ach and smoked brinza cheese, as well as old-school break­fast standards […]

Tom’s Café pick for April

Many fea­tures of Poneke betray its Mojo her­it­age, but with some not­able dif­fer­ences. For a start, the Mar­tin Bos­ley influ­ence means that there’s more emphas­is on meals, not just cof­fee and snacks. Among the high­lights are grilled sour­dough bread with roas­ted feta and grapes, and a deli­ciously light and mari­time take on pizza (smoked kahawai […]

Food: Cheap Eats 2015

Food: Cheap Eats 2015

And by cas­u­al, I really mean cas­u­al. Some crit­ics con­sider a res­taur­ant with $40 mains ‘cas­u­al’ if the som­meli­er isn’t French, but for the major­ity of us it means we’re in danger of ketch­up stains, spilt BYO Shiraz and the occa­sion­al seagull attack. The biggest trend I noticed while select­ing a new batch of cheap […]

To end all wars

To end all wars

Vera Brittain’s mem­oir Test­a­ment of Youth is a heart-rend­ing les­son about the First World War and its effects. As you read, gobsmacked by the forces that swoop in and pluck off everything and every­one Brit­tain loved, her out­rage — at injustice and pre­vent­able death — informs every step of her story. Aged 21 in 1914, […]

Other countries, other stories

Other countries, other stories

The past, we’re often reminded, is anoth­er coun­try. It’s still inac­cess­ible to even the world­li­est of 21st-cen­tury trav­el­lers; good luck work­ing out the status of forces agree­ment neces­sary to tra­verse that hos­tile ter­rain. You’ll make bet­ter head­way from your sofa. Fran­cis Fukuyama pro­claimed the “End of His­tory” back when CDs were new and the Gulf […]

Movements

Movements

Pub­lic cri­ti­cisms of the estab­lished New Zea­l­and music industry aside, Ian ‘Blink’ Jor­gensen might be best known for organ­ising the well-loved Camp A Low Hum music fest­iv­al dur­ing the late 2000s/early 2010s, and run­ning Wellington’s excel­lent Pup­pies music ven­ue between late 2012 and early 2014. How­ever, when I first met Ian 15 years ago, he […]

Whitebait

Whitebait

We’re told that White­bait is not just a relo­cated White House; it’s part of the trend away from stil­ted ‘fine din­ing’ to a more cas­u­al exper­i­ence, though still with high-end food and pri­cing. There are no cer­tainly no white table­cloths, but there’s also no mis­tak­ing this for a ram­bunc­tious diner. The con­ver­sa­tion was a polite, […]

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