Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.
~ Michael Caine
“Duck” is one of my favourite words in the world. Is there anything so happy as a rubber duckie, or a duck pond in a garden, or ducking quickly behind a pillar to surprise someone as they unknowingly stroll past? Oh, and of course… needless to say… duck, you are sooooo delicious!
Mmmm. I am, tonight, close to quacking with happiness following a delightful catch up/dinner with my friend Cam who has recently made (the most excellent) choice of moving to Auckland!
Following a quick perusal of the Entertainment Book, we decided on St Tropez since it was close by, and, more importantly, the menu sounded too good to pass up.
What was even better than reading the menu was eating the food off that menu. The garlic bread was superb – warm and crisp and flavourful, with just the right amount of sweet tomato bits on top… and for mains, Cam ordered the lamb with caramelised onion, mushroom and bacon with a potato mash. I got to try a piece of the lamb – one which required both knife and fork and some skill to transport to my lips, so tender it was! I could not decide between the “Char Grilled Fish, Lemon Beurre Noisette Sauce w Capers & Tomato, Jasmine Almond Rice” and “Duck Leg Confit, Haricots White Bean Casserolette, Red Wine Plum Sauce” – thankfully, the charming maître d’ came to my rescue – I went with her recommendation.
I do not regret taking her advice – my dinner was beautifully cooked and plated. When it arrived, I saw a bouquet of green beans tied in a carrot ribbon; white beans bubbling merrily in a ramekin; and the prize duck confit, bless its soul, standing proudly on the right, lightly bathed in sauce. Wonderful. I stared at it for a while, trying to commit the sight of it to memory… I can still see it now. The flavours met and embraced on my tongue…
And, Cam treated me to dinner this evening – which was really so generous (thank you Cam!)… and sparked a mini idea…
If you have been reading my most recent blog posts, you may have read that for nearly no reason at all, various friends have lately decided to bless me with meals fit for a King. My cup runneth over! I have wined and dined at three top Auckland establishments in two weeks – and had my meals paid for, and my heart filled with their friendship and conversation.
So – I’d like to offer you the chance to win a $50 voucher for any New Zealand restaurant/café of your choice ($60 if they only sell vouchers in $20 instalments), as long as they offer vouchers for sale.
What’s the catch, you ask? Ah, yes, there is a catch.
You will do the work, and the voucher will go to someone else. No, don’t go away… read on, you’ll see why in a minute.
I thought of offering the voucher to readers directly, but I’m going to draw inspiration from Oxfam and UNICEF – and give you the gift of giving.
It’s easy –
1. Close your eyes and think of a beautiful meal you’ve eaten, and how much you smiled eating it.
2. Now think about giving a bit of that smile to someone… in the form of a voucher for a nice place they might not ordinarily visit?
3. Then leave a comment on this post, writing a sentence (or two) using the word “delicious”. Please type your email address in carefully, because I will need a valid way to reach you if you win!
The winner will be drawn at random – I will email you and get the name and postal address of your “giftee”, and the restaurant/café of your choice – and then I will purchase the voucher and send it on to your giftee anonymously. And, alright, I’ll sweeten the deal – you get a batch of homemade chocolate truffles (if in Auckland) or something equally nice/less fragile than truffles which will survive a courier ride (if elsewhere in NZ) from me. (By the way, I can’t guarantee you’ll love my baking, but I’ll try to make it loveable).
Questions, sing out… otherwise, thank you for reading – and good luck!
Please note that this is open to readers residing in New Zealand only – comments must be in by 11pm (NZ time), Wednesday 10 August.
PS. Visit St Tropez.
St Tropez Restaurant – 149 Parnell Road, Parnell, Auckland – Phone: 09 309 0996
That’s a very good idea Mel. St tropez is one of my favorite restaurants and the duck there is really delicious! :) oh as is the lamb.
Oh dear my head is exploding full of possibilities. I’ll pick a cafe where the $50 will go a long way (brunch is a social occasion after all!). I love the delicious hash browns at Beauvais in Christchurch, and have yet to experience a bad meal there. Even my parents, who normally complain about the prices of “Western places” (guess where they’re from?!) spoke really highly of the place.
This is such a lovely idea by the way!
This Is Just to Say
I have eaten
that were in
you were probably
they were delicious
and so cold
-William Carlos Williams
Another delicious weekend for me, too. Started off with lovely dinner at the even more lovely Merlot on O’Connell Street, oh and had a glass of the first wine I ever remembered the name of (Yulamba Shiraz – delicious!). Even better, today had the most delicious breakfast – french toast with bacon and bananas followed by a stroll over the french market. And right now we’re searching the www for the. most. delicious. unbaked. cheesecake.
Duck is a great word (and great meal). I like the word “quack” too, it’s silly and suitable. “Delicious” is also a cool word, but I like to pronounce it “deeeeelicious”, or “dullicious” (in ridiculously thick kiwi accent). It’s cool to have favourite words; it’s nice how the small things in life can make us smile.
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I am just back from a very delicious day in Wellington. What a sweet idea this is Mel, I would give a voucher to someone to enjoy the wonderful Nikau, one of my most favourite cafes!
This is such a cool idea. I almost forgot to enter! Thanks for the reminder :)
The duck you describe sounds so delicious. I’ll have to remember St Tropez for next time I’m in Auckland!
Thank you everyone – I really enjoyed reading each and every comment! Congratulations, Becs, on winning this one :-)
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thanks again Mel, am loving the marsala!!