Restaurant recommendations for New Zealand, Melbourne and Langkawi

Lamb in Roaring Megs, Queenstown
New Zealand has more sheep than people. No sheep jokes please. So lamb is obviously a speciality here. It’s not cheap considering the volume of sheep but it’s worth spending the money if you like your lamb. We had the award winning Confit of Lamb Shoulder with Lamb Jus & Herb Crusted Canterbury Lamb Cutlets, roasted & served with Gratin Potato & Seasonal Vegetables. Not only was it delicious but the restaurant was small and welcoming. The owner was very friendly and came over when we paid the bill to say hi and we ended up having a long chat with her. Would highly recommend it if you’re ever in Queenstown (where there are a number of other great options).

Fat Badgers pizza in Queenstown
Amazing pizza, epic proportions. The menu is extensive so I can’t remember exactly what this is but essentially one half is a meat feast and the other half a bbq chicken and we took about a third home in a doggy bag for leftover lunch the next day.

Brunch at Hello Sunday, Christchurch
The best brunches I’ve had have been in New Zealand and this was so exception. I had the classic Eggs Benny – herb potato hash, poached eggs with spinach and hollandaise sauce on sour dough bread with bacon. Other times I swapped the potato for avocado. Serve with a cappuccino for the perfect start to my day.

East Street Vegetarian bar and cafe, Nelson.
This was a real surprise for me as
I’m a big carnivore and I don’t eat lots of cheese so I tend to avoid vegetarian options. But we went back twice partly for the food but also for the ambience. The third picture is of the restaurant’s backdrop which was of swallows and flamingos which was unusual and the menus were old menus such as Barry Manilow, Olivia Newton John. A bit weird but cool.
The top dish was my dinner and it doesn’t look like anything special but it’s delicious. Annoyingly they don’t have a menu online so I’m reliant on my crappy memory but I think it was a cauliflower, tofu and sweet potato stew in coconut milk with a salad and garlic bread. Phil had a veggie burger which had sweet potato, beans, rice and veggies in the filling.
You’ll have to take my word for it, it was really tasty and not something I would have any idea how to cook at home but I will definitely give it a try.

Byblos bar and restaurant on the Southbank, Melbourne
This was a Lebanese restaurant and we had a Mezze sharing plate made up of pitta, hummus, tabouleh, chicken kebabs, grilled and minced lamb, and an assortment of filo pastries of lamb, veg and cheese. Delicious and affordable considering it’s on Melbourne’s expensive Southbank.
Also, special mention goes to Polepole which is an African restaurant in Melbourne, Little Collins Street. (   I have no pictures but we had the All you can Meat menu for $39 which gave us unlimited dishes including fried bread in Mauritian Creole batter (super naughty but wow), pickled watermelon (so much nicer than it sounds), sticky cardamom honey chicken ribs and pork belly in a leek, pineapple and yogurt rub. I wish I’d taken pictures as I’ve not had African food in a long time and it was a really great find. Polepole is also attached to a cool cocktail bar called Glamp which was unfortunately closed on Tuesdays but it looked like it would be worth a trip.

Fat Cupid, Langkawi
Nasi Ayam Pontay. This is a slow cooked chicken stew infused with herbs, spices, mushrooms and potatoes with a cucumber and pineapple salad, stir fried veg and rice. When I was in Borneo I was disappointed with the quality of the food, especially the meat and poultry which was generally on the bone and grisly. Fat Cupid was our first meal in Langkawi (and the best quality food we’ve tried) and is a great example of Malaysian food. I’ve also had a sweet potato and pumpkin curry which was good and Phil had a curry with prawns in (which they kindly de-shelled and he thought was delicious). More Fat Cupids in Langkawi please.

Suncafe, Langkawi
Nasi Campur- had a plate which consisted of a bit of everything Malaysian. I had chicken curry, beef rendang, chicken satay, prawn crackers, spinach with sweet chilli sauce and spicy sambal (cucumber with a hot chilli filling) and rice. It was a bit of everything which I enjoyed but I was overly full afterwards, a bit too much going on in the plate! The Suncafe is rated highly in Langkawi and I think it deserves the rating although I don’t think it’s as good as Fat Cupid.

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