IMG_7059 With the forecast being thundery for most of the long weekend and our unorganised selves, mainly the latter, we didn’t manage to plan any road trips or over-the-sea trips. Our four days involved analysing the weather for a good hour after a sleep-in and then spontaneously coming up with things to do – where we would eventually end up travelling to Hamilton to visit the Gardens in the rain and be inside playing mini golf and bowling when the sun was shining. Oh, New Zealand weather.IMG_7063

Our lunch at Iguana Restaurant definitely lifted our spirits a little bit more as it poured buckets-load outside. The restaurant is super spacious with roadside seats, lots of indoor seating and more out the back in the natural light. There are hanging bare lightbulbs above the bar, deer head statues on the wall, a pool table and a back wall lined with wooden cupboards filled with wine.IMG_7051 IMG_7058 IMG_7109 IMG_7100

Pulled pork baguette w/ Mediterranean salad and duckfat fries ($12) – fries were much too salty, or the curly fries were too good. We enjoyed both the salad and the baguette.IMG_7069

Out of the Blue pizza (Med $22.50) – delicious. The toppings were generous with large scallops and squid rings. We loved the crispy base too.IMG_7079

Lemon and chilli chicken pasta w/ added chorizo ($17) – too salty for us. It didn’t seem as exciting as we envisioned it from the menu and the chicken was on the drier side.IMG_7072

Curly fries w/ Aioli ($9.30) – get it, get it, get it!
IMG_7067IMG_7077

We were much too full to be able to devour some dessert. So wanting to make life harder for myself after hearing someone mention on Instagram that their desserts are amazing, I just checked in on their website for the dessert menu and they offer Vanilla Brulee! – how could I have missed that! I will be back.IMG_7105 IMG_7046

Another long weekend is just around the corner – what do you have planned?

Iguana Restaurant.
203 Victoria Street South, Hamilton Central.

BURGERBURGER_THT_01BURGERBURGER_THT_02You’d probably find it difficult to not have heard about this new burger joint. Burger Burger opened with a bang and based on night three store traffic situation it seems everybody wants needs to be there.

There was a wait for tables (a good sign no less) of around 15 or so minutes. Which was all cool but we wondered how they remembered who came first and who didn’t when there wasn’t a names list taken down. We may or may not have accidentally scored a table before some others, shhh.BURGERBURGER_THT_04

We ordered the moment we sat down. It didn’t take long considering how packed the restaurant was which was great for our starving after-work stomaches.BURGERBURGER_THT_06

Vanilla milkshake – made with Lewis Road Creamery products which we’ve heard great stuff about. The shake was super, dare I say, creamy. It was smooth and silky. A burger’s best friend.

Chocolate milkshake – texture wise it’s just like it’s Vanilla partner in crime. We only wish it was a tinge more chocolatey.

Homemade honey cola soda – we’d say stick to the shakes and the Lion Red. If you want soda hop next door.

BURGERBURGER_THT_18BURGERBURGER_THT_17BURGERBURGER_THT_14BURGERBURGER_THT_15Chicken Burger ($10) – the definite winner of the night. The chicken was juicy and succulent. It had that delicious grilled flavour with a yummy combination of red pepper salsa and aioli. Did we say we liked this the best? Yes, it was the best.

BURGERBURGER_THT_11 BURGERBURGER_THT_13 BURGERBURGER_THT_10Beef Burger ($10) – runner up of the night. On the first bite all I could notice was how juicy the beef was. It was cooked medium rare as they promised. With it was pickle, mayo, tomato jam, and mustard your standard beef burger friends.

BURGERBURGER_THT_09Special Burger (Venison with kale, blue cheese, and mushroom) ($12) – indeed a special burger, but special in a way that the pattie was actually dry, a little surprising considering the great experience we had with the other two. We wouldn’t recommend this one.

BURGERBURGER_THT_12 BURGERBURGER_THT_16Potato skins ($6) – crispy, salty, filling. More for us please.BURGERBURGER_THT_08 BURGERBURGER_THT_20

Kumara chips ($6)

BURGERBURGER_THT_07 BURGERBURGER_THT_05 BURGERBURGER_THT_19So our verdict, it’s good value at just $10 a burger. They also don’t skimp on their patties and meat, and their buns are divine – yes there is a choice of having Bunnuce i.e. Lettuce instead of the bun, but why would you want to do that? Don’t do that.

Will we be back? Sure thing.

 


Easter hours: No surcharge
Good Friday – open at 5pm
Easter Monday – CLOSED

Burger Burger.
Ponsonby Central.
4 Brown Street, Ponsonby, Auckland.

_MG_2915 copy _MG_2877 copyIt’s been a while since we last visited a market and with winter drawing near it’ll be even harder to get up and out of bed early in the morning to make it to them. Matakana is a good hour drive north from Auckland Central – potential Easter revisit?_MG_2883 copy _MG_2905 copy

The crepes are a little on the salty side but still delicious regardless. The smoothies are a necessity for accompanying you whilst you flit between stalls. The handmade chocolate is the definite ‘souvenir’ back to Auckland. And the oysters are fresh and delightful._MG_2864 copy _MG_2866 copy _MG_2865 copy_MG_2869 copy_MG_2876 copy_MG_2875_MG_2908 copy_MG_2920 copy

Our best advice to you would be to go early – parking is mad during market opening hours, and bring enough cash – there’s one ATM (BNZ) that comes with a crazy long line._MG_2856 copy _MG_2924 copy _MG_2926 copy _MG_2910 copy _MG_2881 copy _MG_2882 copyMatakana Farmers Market.
2 Matakana Valley Road, Matakana.
8am – 1pm

These pies, at The Fridge are so famous we had to go check it out. Our luck had clearly run out and there were only a few pies left on the rack at 12:30. We opted for the mince, mozzarella, potato top pie. It was delicious, perfectly flaky, and had a rich buttery taste – it was definitely enjoyable. Though at a $8.50 price tag it didn’t seem worth it. Pies are things we classed as a cheap indulgence, that raked in at about $3/$4, and that was bad for your body but not your wallet.
P1016077-EditP1016078-EditThe orange and lemon freshly squeezed juice deserves several thumbs up. The berry smoothie though came as mouthfuls of seeds.
P1016090-Edit P1016110-EditWe also tried the Eggs Benedict with Salmon which came on homemade hashcakes ($17.50) and corn fritters with bacon ($17). The bacon was crispy but the corn fritters dry. After having successfully made eggs benedict at home, it’s difficult to convince us it costs almost $20. We now expect extravagant things from this dish when eating out – goodness we’re hard to impress.P1016105-Edit

Boni had a spontaneous pancake craving on Sunday morning and we went on a desperate Google, Yelp, Zomato search for somewhere that served it that was also not in the CBD or Ponsonby or anywhere further North than that. It was surprisingly a really tough task. We trawled through the many menus and decided to settle on this bad boy from Domain & Ayr.

P1016148-Edit

Rightly named the Fluffy Pancake ($17) it was a feast for the eyes. Though sadly not so much the tastebuds. While it was fun to eat, photograph, and look at. It was more like swallowing mouthfuls of egg whites than an actual pancake. There’s a wait time of around 20 minutes for this little sweet cloud and if you do decide you want to try it make sure you bring a friend.P1016152-EditP1016142-Edit P1016127-EditP1016157-EditWe’ve had some beautiful clear, summer-like skies lately but with daylight saving ending it seems rain is imminent and will hit us on Friday, if not Thursday. Hope you all have an amazing week ahead nonetheless!
_DSC0024-EditThe Fridge Cafe.
507 New North Road, Kingsland, Auckland.

Domain & Ayr.
492 Parnell Road, Parnell, Auckland

Vietnamese is one of our favourite cuisines. We’ve been on a constant lookout to find the best of it in town.

After hearing people rave about Cafe Viet, we had to go try. The atmosphere is unlike your typical Vietnamese restaurants. With exposed brick walls, bright blue shutters and trailing plants painted on the walls it’s a little like a Saigon movie set. There were also fairy lights and brightly coloured cushions scattered around.  CafeViet_THT_01

CafeViet_THT_02 CafeViet_THT_03

Bang Bang Prawns ($10) -my favourite of the night. These were crispy yet juicy inside. I loved how bits of lemongrass were infused into the batter giving the prawns that extra flavour boost.

CafeViet_THT_06 CafeViet_THT_07

Cafe Viet Spring Rolls ($10) – these are different to your typical vietnamese spring rolls. They’re filled with juicy diced pork and prawn, fried, then wrapped in fresh rice paper with lettuce, carrot, bean sprouts and mint. Dip them in the nước mắm sauce and you’ll be munching away happily. CafeViet_THT_04 CafeViet_THT_05

Coconut Juice ($4)  - surprisingly this was served with pieces of real coconut. The drink was very refreshing, perfect for a hot summer night. Although If you’re die-hard coconut juice fan this may disappoint you as the coconut flavour isn’t strong.

Peanut Butter Delight Frappe ($8) – a very rich but lightweight drink. My friend and I both agreed a scoop of chocolate blended into the drink would’ve been perfect.CafeViet_THT_08

Saigon Flamed Grilled Lemongrass Chicken ($19) – served with curry puffs and a side of crunchy salad with prawn crackers. I was rather disappointed in this dish. Even though the chicken was very tender and the servings generous, it lacked the authentic lemongrass flavour that I coveted. CafeViet_THT_09

Banana Coconut Doughnuts with Chocolate dipping sauce ($10) – sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, these were very crispy. We couldn’t taste much of the coconut in the doughnut and the banana pieces were a lot smaller than I imagined. Admittedly this was my least favourite dish of the night. CafeViet_THT_12

If you’re looking for a quiet night out I would suggest you come early. Once it hits 7, the restaurant fills up quickly and you’ll find it hard to hear yourself.  The service was attentive and the staff were very helpful. I would definitely come back for the small plates and drinks.CafeViet_THT_13

Cafe Viet.
2 Surrey Crescent, Grey Lynn, Auckland

cafeviet-ratings

P1015906-EditP1015918-EditOver the weekend we went on Whittakers’ Big Egg Hunt (read our post here) and watched the movie Non-stop. Food-wise we had breakfast at Federal & Wolfe and afternoon tea at Ponsonby Central.P1015947-Edit P1015941-Edit P1015957-Edit P1015956-Edit P1015950-Edit

Bedford Soda (read full post here) – whilst we found the sodas refreshing they weren’t as flavourful as we remembered. The Oreo Shake on the other hand we saw our friend finish in a matter of seconds!P1015964-Edit

The Dairy (read full post here) – sadly they’d run out of root vege crisps by the time we got there but we managed to get an ice cream sandwich topped with candy floss! The cookies were too hard and possibly slightly overcooked/burnt – hopefully they get back the soft chewy ones soon! We’d recommend the Vintage strawberry ice cream flavour, super delicious.P1015976-Edit P1015969-Edit P1015971-Edit

Hope you all enjoyed a lovely weekend!P1015900-Edit P1015919-Edit P1015926-Edit P1015910-Edit P1015931-Edit

bigegghunt23_THTEaster is just round the corner and this year to celebrate, Whittakers have scattered Auckland CBD, Wellington and Christchurch with large decorated eggs for New Zealanders to take part in a big egg hunt. Many artists have been involved in producing the 101 unique eggs, and the initiative supports the Starship Foundation (read more here).

bigegghunt27_THTbigegghunt02_THTbigegghunt01_THTbigegghunt11_THTbigegghunt10_THTbigegghunt26_THT bigegghunt08_THT bigegghunt09_THT bigegghunt30_THTbigegghunt14_THTbigegghunt07_THT

This is an excellent activity for the kids and family during the Easter Break and is a good opportunity to visit areas of town that you don’t go often. We certainly had a fun time tracking down the eggs and admiring how they were presented.

bigegghunt03_THT bigegghunt04_THT bigegghunt13_THTbigegghunt18_THTbigegghunt17_THTbigegghunt24_THTbigegghunt20_THTbigegghunt21_THTbigegghunt29_THT

The hunt is on now till 22 April. There is also an app (Apple only) which you can download to scan and collect the eggs as you find them and compare how you’re doing in relation to fellow hunters (click here). By joining the egg hunt you can go into the draw to win a golden slab by Partridge Jewellers and Whittakers’ peanut slabs on the way (read more here). Bonus points for finding the (Where’s) Wally egg who moves location every two days!

bigegghunt28_THT bigegghunt05_THTP1015822bigegghunt16_THT bigegghunt15_THT bigegghunt12_THT

What are your plans for the Easter holiday?

bigegghunt06_THT

 

The Big Egg Hunt NZ.
Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 241 other followers

%d bloggers like this: