Archive for the ‘Restaurant Reviews’ Category

Hislops Cafe Kaikoura

December 21, 2008

My daughter and I broke our 9 hour and 10 minute drive down to the vineyard yesterday for an hour by having lunch at one of our favorite restaurants – Hislops Cafe in Kaikoura (Wendy flew down to Dunedin on Thursday to catch with some old school and university friends, our son Guy has stayed behind in Wellington to continue his holiday job, trying to maximinse earnings before heading off to Geneva).  Everything Hislops Cafe sells is organic (including an excellent organically certified wine from Central Otago!!!!) but what has attracted us there (apart from the fact that they have been good customers of ours for years) is the quality of the food, and the consistency of the offering.  They have lovely homebaked breads and a great menu.  Yesterday was no exception.  I had a kumara, bacon and avocado salad washed down with an organic coffee.  My daughter had an enormous bacon, lettuce and avocado sandwhich washed down with a Phoenix cola.

Located exactly 2 hours drive from the Picton Ferry I recommend Hislops to all travelling north or south through Kaikoura or for those overnighting there.  They are open most evenings.  We have had several meals there over the years and have never been disappointed.  It might pay to book if you are planning to eat dinner there.

Hippopotamus Restaurant – Museum Hotel, Wellington

December 17, 2008

For those planning corporate entertainment and who want a change from the upstairs room at the Boulcott Street Bistro, Shed 5, Logan Brown or Martin Bosley (all of which I visit regularly) can I recommend the Hippopotamus Restaurant on level 3 of the Museum Hotel.  Hotel owner Chris Parkin kindly encouraged my visit and I am very grateful for the invitation. I must confess to not knowing that a restaurant of this quality existed at the Museum Hotel before the invitation.

The view from our table out over the moored yachts and inner harbour was excellent.

Service was superb.  Both waiters appeared to be French (well both were native French speakers).

The menu was was interesting – plenty of choice

Wendy and both had seared scallops on cauliflower puree, crustacean sauce and lemon dressed micro green rocket to begin.  They were superb.

Wendy enjoyed her main of pan seared snapper on a pea and vanilla risotto with coconut and almond froth while I had the fillet steak.  This was 250g and wonderfully tender (maybe is was partially grain fed – I should have asked).  This was accompanied by steamed vegetables and fries (my choice – there were several potato options).

We shared a crème brûlée for desert – not on the menu.  Thank goodness we shared as it was very generously sized.

The wine list was good (no organically grown wines from Central Otago…) with wines from France, Australia and New Zealand.  We settled for a Hawkes Bay Chardonnay (Matariki) which went very well with both the scallops and snapper.

Thanks Chris Parkin and his team for a great evening.  We had a great meal, and recommend Hippopotamus very strongly.