Saturday, 26 May 2012

Spicy Joint, Dominion Road

After attempting to go to Clip ‘n Climb without a booking we decided to go and eat instead. With a name of “Spicy Joint” and an A-rating (yes we checked) it sounded like it would be a good adventure.

We were the only non-asians in the restaurant, and the waitress needed to get the people on the table next to us to translate what we wanted; that is a sign of an authentic restaurant. The style of food here apparently comes from central China, according to the table next to us.

I went with a ridiculous chilli and chicken dish that was reminiscent of a dish I ordered years ago at another restaurant. The chicken was deep fried, which I assume is authentic, and the chilli’s altered between mild and crazy. At one point I had to wait before I could eat again.2012-05-26 15.14.34_003

We also had some dumplings that were lovely and covered with chilli oil and garlic.

2012-05-26 15.09.50_002There were other good dishes too.2012-05-26 15.23.36_0062012-05-26 15.23.25_005

I was also amused by the bill, and the only English on it being “GST”.2012-05-26 17.26.23_001a

A great afternoon adventure that came to $58 for 4 people.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Mikano, Mechanics Bay, Auckland

We had a good (but lacklustre) meal out tonight at Mikano in Mechanics Bay with service that didn’t feel natural and lacked finesse.

I last went to Mikano several years ago and it was Jane’s first time. The setting overlooking the harbour through the floor to ceiling glass windows is lovely but the restaurant itself almost feels like you’re in a barn with poor lighting (at least it was in the corner we were seated). It was disappointing to see that the glassware was of a rugged variety as opposed to good quality glasses.

For my entree I had the clams. These were done in a chardonnay sauce with herbs. There were different types of clams and I enjoyed the dish.

P1020801_005Jane had a smoked fish platter for her entree and thoroughly enjoyed it. The fish had a beautifully light smoked flavour and was very moist.

P1020800_004I had Yellowfin tuna for my main pan-fried with fennel puree, orange, pink grapefruit, capers, croutons & burnt orange vinaigrette. This was cooked nicely in a rare/blue style and I particularly enjoyed the puree. I did however find the tuna was a bit too salty and not helped by the capers. I did still enjoy the dish.

P1020802_006Jane had the grilled milk-fed veal scotch with lemon & basil, zucchini, pinenuts, raisins
& ricotta gnocchi for her main, which was nice but lacked any wow factor.

P1020804_008I finished with a lovely Blue Cheese (Bleu d’Auvergne) and crackers and Jane had the Chocolate & mandarin ‘Delice’ (hazelnut crust, chocolate mousse and mandarin jelly) which she enjoyed.

Our meals arrived in a timely manner and were well presented, but even though we were asked a few times whether we would like another drink our empty wine glasses were not taken away. Similarly, our water was topped up while we had our entree but the glasses remained empty thereafter.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Daikoku, Takapuna

We dined out at the Daikoku Teppan-yaki restaurant in Takapuna this evening. This was our first time to this particular restaurant but we are familiar with Teppan-yaki.

The restaurant was about a third full and had a nice vibe,

I had the Scotch Fillet set and Jane had the Aged Scotch Fillet set. Our chef prepared the meals in front of us, made a volcano out of onion rings, oil and some flame and did several other tricks to entertain.

We had a variety of entree dishes that arrived prior to the main that were all beautifully fresh and flavoursome, particularly when using the accompanying sauces.

Jane’s aged scotch fillet was slightly more tender than my steak, however I don’t think it really warranted the extra $10 (or thereabouts). The steak really needed the sauces to be anything more than a steak cooked on the grill.

An enjoyable evening out.