Since I'm still rounding up our past New Zealand experience on the blog, I've been dreaming about some of our favorite food from the trip. Here are my top four:
The Fat Duck was hands down our favorite dining experience in NZ. Located in the tiny town of Te Anau, the home base for seeing Milford Sound, this casual restaurant serves beautify presented, tasty food with a smile. We discovered the restaurant because the daughter of our B&B owner worked there at the time. New Zealand is known for its lamb, and we sampled lots, but the grilled lamb dish we shared here was spectacular. The portions were a good size and the prices were reasonable. Sadly, I didn't take any pictures at The Fat Duck so here is one from their Facebook page:
2. Green Mussels at The Occidental Belgium Beer Cafe
As seafood lovers, we had to try New Zealand's famous giant green-lipped mussels. We sampled them at a pub in Auckland called The Occidental Belgium Beer Cafe. You can get them steamed with a variety of sauces or grilled with a variety of toppings. We ordered a mix but my favorite was the basic steamed mussels with celery, onion and garlic. They paired nicely with a fresh pint of beer or a local sauvignon blanc.
I know that many a traveler who has been to Queenstown will cry out "Fergburger? Really? That is so touristy!" Yup, it is and it deserves to be. These burgers rock! Ferg serves inventive hamburgers as well as a variety of non red meat sandwich options. After a day of canyon swinging, hiking, mounting luging, bungee jumping and heart-racing boat rides - a hearty burger really hits the spot.
Among all of our travels, we found that the best coffee is from either New Zealand or South Africa. None of this aromatic, fruity, flowery BS that they tout in San Francisco. This coffee is strong and dark - just the way we like it. Flat whites, which were invented in Australia or New Zealand are like lattes, except smaller with a higher ratio of coffee. They have only recently started to become popular int he US. We each probably had two flat whites a day and our favorite was located in this tiny town called Kawakawa. We think the cafe is called the Kawakawa Bakehouse. It's located next the self proclaimed "world's beast public bathroom". I'm not kidding. It's thing - check it out here.