Liquid Molten Saturday, Nov 27 2010 

In the bustling little suburb of Mt Eden, Auckland (New Zealand) is a restaurant/bar that has captured both my fancy, and my wallet. This great little place is called Liquid Molten.

On one side, you will find Molten – a higher end dining experience where the food is matched only by the superb service and wine selection. On the other, is Liquid – my home away from home. A classy little bar that opens up at the back to a private courtyard that boasts not only ambiance and style, but funky music and blankets for those cooler nights.

Open until late, this hidden refuge is where my friends and I go for coffee, wine, dessert and a good old gossip. The staff are fantastic, the coffee strong and the food divine – need I say more? I spend at least two or three nights there every week, either leisurely sipping coffee with girlfriends or stopping in for a quick drink before heading elsewhere.

So, my recommendation if you are looking for a quiet, classy coffee spot in central Auckland? Go to Liquid, it will be worth your while.

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Quick Nando’s Update Tuesday, Mar 23 2010 

This is just for New Zealand Nando’s fanatics!

As of this week, all of the Nando’s restaurants will be selling their peri peri salt (the very same stuff they sprinkle on their hot chips!) in glass shakers for home consumption. The price (so sayeth a nice employee) will be approximately NZD$5.00. Not bad for such a delicious addition to my spice rack!

I have been waiting for this for a long time – even emailed Nando’s direct to ask when little old NZ would be able to purchase this addictive powder. America has it (you can buy it at Tesco’s) but as per usual, New Zealand often comes last with these things.

But, lets celebrate the fact we can now buy their world famous peri peri salt and add it to EVERYTHING we eat from now on! 😀 I just hope that, like other countries, we get the peri peri salt in different levels of spiciness! I want extra hot! *Fingers crossed*

Nando's Peri Peri Salt

Nando’s! Friday, Dec 18 2009 

If you are anything like me, you’re getting sick of cheap fast-food burgers and greasy chips. So when I need a quick, scrumptious meal because I’m too lazy to get off my ass and make myself something, I go to Nando’s!

Nando’s restaurants are situated all around the world – 26 countries so far including good ol’ New Zealand – and the chain originated out of South Africa. The menu is made up of Mozambiquan/Portugese-style dishes, and the main focus is their specially marinated chicken. The marinades (In New Zealand anyway) are either BBQ, lemon and herb, medium peri peri, hot peri peri or extra hot peri peri (my personal fave!). The sides are anything from chips (with a peri peri salt which is deliciously addictive!) to spicy rice or marinated corn on the cob. 

The food is absolutely wonderful, great for people who love spicy food or want Halal dishes. (Halal is meat specifically killed and prepared for Muslims due to their religious beliefs) It’s not particularly cheap, but it’s not fatty, its delicious and the servings are HUGE! They also sell the sauces and marinades so that you can make your own cooking taste wonderful at home. 

Mmmm, my mouth is watering as I write this… Okay, must – keep – writing… Get food later…

The food doesn’t look like much, but the taste – oh the taste! If you go, and I’m sure you will at some point, I advise you order the Peri Peri Chips. They aren’t spicy, just scrum-diddly-umptious! 

Nando's Logo

 

Nando's Peri Peri Chips

All Thai’d Up Monday, Nov 30 2009 

When it comes to food for me, the spicier the better. So it will come as no surprise to anyone that my food obsession is Thai! I go out for Thai at least once a week, and quite often try new restaurants. So many people say to me, “Oh, Thai is nice but I don’t know where the good restaurants are”. So I thought, why not blog about some of my faves! 🙂 (In Auckland of course!) 

1) Pattaya Thai Restaurant in Mairangi Bay – This restaurant is the food equivalent of the love of my life! It’s not super fancy but it has an A Rating for food hygiene, its clean and decorated nicely, with super friendly staff and an extensive menu. And the food – Oh, the food! Everything is fresh, they make it exactly the way you want it and it’s done in record time despite being made from scratch. Special tip: The satay chicken skewers are done in a sweet peanut sauce which is the chefs special recipe and it is DELICIOUS! The curries are also to die for – and when you ask for things to be “HOT, THAI HOT!” they grin at you and do it! It’s a wonderful little restaurant, you never regret going and it’s so inexpensive. Love it.

2) Ruan Thai Restaurant in Mission Bay – This restaurant is next to Reef Bar in Mission Bay, and has a beautiful view across the water. The staff are lovely, the hygiene rating is A and the restaurant is beautifully decorated in Thai art and decorations. This particular restaurant is a bit more pricey than most of the other Thai restaurants around, but it has great ambiance and yummy food. It can get quite busy and you mostly have to book, especially during the weekends, but it is worth the effort. The food is fresh and scrumptious, the meals quick to arrive. Special tip: The Gai Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa (I’m serious!) is a chicken dish much like a curry but thicker, a bit different. It is absolutely beautiful, spicy as all hell, and a dish I dream about often!

3) Thai Me Up in Ponsonby – This is such a fantastic little restaurant! The staff are so warm and friendly, the food is SUPER cheap (As in, mains for $12), the food hygiene rating is A, and the meals are WONDERFUL! Seriously. Fresh, tasty, with a massive selection of anything you could possibly be craving. You always have to book here because it’s always full, a good sign, and the food is quick to arrive and come with a friendly smile from your waiter/waitress. Special tip: The Tom Yum soup is really yummy here. A spicy-sour tangy type soup with either seafood or chicken, it’s not for everyone but I adore it. It’s an unusual flavour but definitely one to try! 

4) Thai Village Restaurant in Remuera – An extremely nice looking restaurant, spacious with great decor and flow. The food hygiene is an A rating, they have options for Gluten free diners and their service is great. Often you don’t have to book (It’s a large place to fill!) and though the food is a bit pricier than other restaurants, it certainly is worth it. Great ambiance, great flavours (also caters to those fussy european taste buds that don’t want anything too Thai) and has a large selection to choose from. Special tip: The Chicken and Cashew nuts is really well done here, fresh and tasty.

5) Thai Archer Restaurant in Royal Oak – This has been a family pick for years, and they more often than not impress. The restaurant is lovely, a converted house decorated and designed into a dining place. The staff are usually great, the menu is extensive and the prices are reasonable. It’s best to book as they are quite popular, and they even make great deserts. (Ollies is down the road though and I often end up migrating there after dinner!) Special tip: The entrees are wonderful here. Try the Curry Puffs and Spring Rolls – just delicious!

There are many more Thai restaurants I could list here, but these are my top picks. Hope it helps anyone looking for a nice dinner out…

Mmmm… Might go have Thai now……

Thai Food