Pasture was recently named Restaurant of the Year by Auckland’s Metro Magazine.
And I agree with them.
We took over the entire restaurant on Wednesday night. A family get-together – but not as grandiose as it sounds. There were only six of us (wife, sister and daughter – how spoilt am I?), but the restaurant only has six seats!
Like my favourite Binkleys in Phoenix, Pasture chef Ed Verner is re-imagining the entire restaurant experience – making it an intimate, focused, intense yet relaxed night full of quiet delight.
The six seats are all at the Chef’s counter. Three chefs serve a tasting menu – no choices, no dietary stuff, just imaginative, wholesome, delicious tasty treats – partnered with unusual, interesting, beverages (sake, beer, wine, cocktail, mead) pairings.
Two seatings per night – 5.45pm and 8.15pm, Wednesday to Saturday. No frills. Just excellence. Doors open at 8.15pm and then you’re off. Three hours of fun.
The restaurant has its own lounge integrated into the counter/kitchen – decorated like a cross between a Japanese inn, a Scandinavian bolthole and a 50’s New York loft.
Ed works with whole animals, seafood and line-caught fish. Japanese, Kiwi, Danish, Peruvian – you name it.
Here’s what we ate and drank.
Mushroom & hazelnut
Under the Milky Way / Grandmaster Flash
Build me up buttercup
Kohlrabi, pear, pumpkin seed
Zenkuro ‘Junmai’ Queenstown ‘18
Memento Mori ‘Rosso’ Victoria ’17 – Cucumber & white asparagus
Diamond Shell Clams
Wheat & rye sourdough, our aged butter
Three Boys Wheat, Christchurch – Our sourdough ‘beer’
Radishes, beeswax & almond
Supernatural ‘Minus 220’ Hawkes Bay ’18 – Celeriac & pear
Snapper, egg yolk & saffron
Patrick Sulivan ‘Baw Baw Shire’ Chardonnay ’18 – Savagnin & Artichoke
The Pig Crumpet
Peckham’s ‘Western Pathfinder’ Moutere ’18 – Toasted hay
Tomato over embers
Distilled Chilli & Greens – Red capsicum
Aged New Zealand Wagyu
Basket Range ‘Vineyard Blend’ Adelaide Hills ’19 – Blackcurrant
Lobster Head & Mead
Mandarin & fennel pollen
Fermented fig leaf – Mandarin
Meyer Lemon & egg yolk
Hot pokered Bellbird Spring ‘Aeris’ Waipara – Rhubarb & Thyme
We’ll be back when we’re next in Auckland.
Try it out.