Auckland is a sauna, compared to windy Wellington. It’s so hot that it’s nearly impossible to think sometimes.
The air smells different, the people look different, and I feel like a different person here. I am more aware than ever of the things that can mark you – age, race, gender… and I am more appreciative of a good long black (sorry Aucklanders, the odds of me getting this in Wellington at a random cafe are still higher!)
I made the most of Cam and Matt being up from Wellington this weekend…!
Spent my first morning in Auckland with Cam drinking coffee and eating cake while ducks waddled around our table in quiet Whitford…
And headed to Muriwai Beach with Matt on Saturday for a day of browning ourselves and soaking in salty sea water!
Pre-beach, we lunched at Mecca – lasagne for Matt…
creamy mushrooms & chorizo over potato for me… (and not-so-lovely coffees for both of us, in all honesty. Bottled drinks or water are probably the way to go at this cafe!).
Dinner when we got back to town was at Portofino and I didn’t take photos of that, but that spaghetti alle vongole was absolutely perfect (the embodiment of al dente), and the espresso shots we got after were similarly delightful. We ate with sand in our hair and in between our toes while the sun faded slowly in the background… oh, the luxury of Summer and weekends!
Sunday rolled along and brought Mandy back from her vacation, so Matt, Mandy and I went to Mezze for coffee and salads… this place must be one of my favourite places in Auckland so far, for their enticing Egyptian orange cake in the cabinet (I didn’t have it this time, but I sure remember it well) – and elegant, relaxing atmosphere. Love the light ‘Spanish-ness’ of Mezze too, and will have to try their sangria sometime!
The smoked chicken salad with the lovely notes of balsamic, almonds, haloumi and all is delicious and makes a great ‘in-between’ meal when you are not in the mood to eat an entire meal, but want something slightly heavier than tapas or fries.
I started my new job today, and had fun at work. I had forgotten how hungry you get when you work in an office though :-) 5pm came and I had to make an emergency stop at Burger King before I passed out on Queen Street.
When we got home, I was STILL hungry; Mandy and I assembled a simple salad for dinner tonight (peaches, leaves, freshly torn basil, ham, capsicum, squeeze of lemon) which was great – we got ravenously hungry again soon after though (Lord help me!) – so we are now enjoying warm mugs of hot chocolate!
Amy’s Kitchen – 730 Whitford Road, Howick, Manukau – Phone: 09 530 8308
Mecca – 85-87 Customs Street West, Viaduct Basin, Auckland – Phone: 09 358 1093
Mezze Bar – 9 Durham Street East, Auckland – Phone: 09 307 2029
Hey Mel! Glad to hear you’re enjoying Auckland. When I get there I’ll take you out to some really awesome places (if you haven’t discovered them already that is)!
Mel – hello! I hope all is going well in Auckland, and that you’re settling into your new job. It’s been a madhouse here, but I seem to be back on top of stuff, which is kinda essential – I’m off on a months holiday to the UK, with a weeks excursion to France! Auckland is a great place to eat, so you should be absolutely spoilt for choice. Take it easy now ;)
Mel, I love your blog. I love the fact that you are celebrating the simple pleasures in life! My friend calls this “the search for free happy”. Also – you have given me some inspiration for some new salad recipes! And for that I shall be eternally grateful :) I so miss being around you and feeding off your infectiousness for life. I hope that I will be able to come visit you sometime. xx
Jian – great, I’ll be pleased to have you as my tour guide!
Nigel – you are a busy man, by the sounds of things! I am glad you are going on holiday soon… to the UK and France, no less! Fantastic! I am definitely eating lots in Auckland… :-O
Mich – haha, search for free happy… well, some people say the best things in life are free and I am inclined to agree. It would be great to see you again – meanwhile, stay strong and smiling! x