One of the highlights of the trip was going down into the glow worm caves – they don’t let you take your own camera though so we had to wait until we got home to see what pics they took of us, so here’s a look at what we did while the Hawks were beating the Niners 🙂
When Tom & Bette visited Sydney their favorite dinner was at an Italian joint, Beppi’s, which has been a Sydney Institution since 1956. For Christmas they treated us to dinner at Beppi’s and luckily the restaurant was just re-opening from their holiday break as we arrived in the city.
They sat us in the wine cellar, and kicked things off with some bruschetta and a Barbera:
Then we shared a couple appetizers: Fiori di Zucchine Ripieni con Ricotta e Funghi Porcini – Home grown Zucchini flowers with a ricotta, basil and Porcini Mushroom filling and Ravioli di Zucca – Ravioli filled with roasted pumpkin & amaretti served with burnt butter & parmesan:
The squash blossoms were nice and piping hot. The ravioli pasta was perfectly made but the filling needed a little kick.
For mains, BK got the Filetto di Vitello alla griglia con Burro Tartufato e Funghi Porcini – Veal fillet grilled and served with truffled butter, porcini mushrooms and potatoes roasted in duck fat:
while I chose one of my favorite fishes from a previous, Barramundi: Filetto di Barramundi Selvatico alla griglia con Peperonata – Barramundi Fillet grilled and served with Peperonata, mint & garlic
We also shard some cauliflower:
and finally for dessert we shared the Crespelle con Fragole liquore D’Arancio alla Fiamma $20 Crepes with strawberries & Grand Marnier flambé – fire!
A delicious way to celebrate our big vacation AND the fifth anniversary our first date 🙂 Thanks Tom & Bette!
Yesterday we did a lunchtime cooking class at the Auckland Seafood Market which was super fun.
First they gave us a glass of wine and then we watched a demo of what we would be making from renowned chef John Campbell (he was the Exec chef of the America’s Cup when the Kiwis hosted).
On the menu today was Salt & Pepper Prawns with a citrus mayo and Seafood Risotto. After the demo we were sent into the kitchen to recreate it on our own!
We got partnered up with a couple funny ladies from Tauranga, a couple hours away. They tackled the risotto while we took on the prawns. Making mayo from scratch is hard! whew, our arms were tired from whisking.
For our last dinner in NZ, we scouted the Harbor area of Auckland and picked what seemed to be a popular spot, Soul Bar and it turned out to be a good choice. Their cocktails were great and the food delish. First some bread:
Then we shared the Kingﬁsh tostada, fresh herbs, ﬁsh sauce vinaigrette, toasted peanuts:
and the South Island whitebait fritter, lemon butter sauce (more like an omlette, the most disappointing dish of the night):
Next was Grilled snapper, green papaya, coriander and mint salad, mango dressing, toasted peanuts:
Cauliﬂ ower and cumin fritters:
and our fave dish of the night, Blackened hapuku with marinated tomatoes and almond skordalia:
conveniently there was a mini-golf course just a couple blocks from our motel in Taupo. BK was still looking for his first win in the southern hemisphere as we stepped on the classic garden type course. KMJ’s strong putting continued and she racked up another win despite the heavy wind coming off the lake.
Landing in Wellington, KMJ looked to extend her South Island domination across the straight and into the north. Carlucci Land is built in an old junkyard with lots of interesting obstacles. It was close throughout and when KMJ had a rough time on 15, BK looked headed to victory. But some errors on 17 for BK led to a draw in the end.
This may be the coolest course we’ve ever encountered. Each hole was uniquely designed with models and electric features that level the playing field based on chance of which tunnel or car your ball ends up in. Following up on her win in Te Anau, Kendra continued to dominate the South Island, this time beating BK by an impressive six strokes.
our last dinner in Queenstown, we walked down to the wharf and spotted a place right away, Public Kitchen, that looked good – luckily there was a table for two available near the water so we snapped it up. This place was similar to Local 360 in Seattle – a variety of locally-sourced dishes meant for sharing. We went protein heavy – calamari to start:
then, salt cod croquettes:
and coconut chicken:
Everything was delicious and a good value as the portions were all pretty generous as compared to most “shared plates” places.