Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Auckland Diner's Diary: September 2014

The changing face of Auckland eating opportunities... As usual, please let me know if I have missed something!

Suburban Cafes

Craft Beer Fix

Breaking Bread

Viva Mexico
  • La Taqueria - tiny container stall next to Atrium on Elliott, selling burritos and of course tacos
  • Flying Burrito Brothers - this franchise that you might have known from Wellington has now opened its second branch in Newmarket

Coming Soon

Upcoming Events

Sunday, September 28, 2014

A Meal in Brief: Boy and Bird

We came here because our friends suggested it, and we had been meaning to check out Mike van der Elzen's latest venture (with co-owner Marie Colosimo) anyway.

The menu was chicken-oriented (all free range), but still catered to those who want to eat other meats or vegetarian dishes. Also, while the Food Truck Garage's focus on healthy eating meant that you could only have baked chips, Mike has brought back the deep-fried options here, clearly marked with a little red devil on the menu.

The setting was delightful. The bright colours and cartoonified food art reminded me of a theme park.

Seating area.
The service was as you would expect in a fun, casual environment.

What we ate included:
  • chicken flavoured popcorn ($4) - the waitress made sure we understood that this was something completely different from popcorn chicken.
Chicken flavoured popcorn.
  • son in law eggs with sticky pork, crunchy sprouts & seaweed ($16) - this unusual dish included a deep-fried whole egg which still had a viscous yolk.

Son in law eggs with sticky pork, crunchy sprouts & seaweed; chicken roll with pickled slaw.
  • half bird, citrus brined, spice rubbed, rotisseried and chopped, served on chunkies with gravy ($19) - a fancier hot chicken dinner, with crunchy potato and plenty of sauce, so you can forgive the somewhat reheated feel.
Half chicken with served with chunkies and gravy.
  • hot roll with chickpea cauliflower fritters, bombay mayo, crunchy sprouts, feta ($12) - you wonder why the bun is so buttery and delicious, until you re-read the menu and realise it's a steamed purple wholemeal brioche roll. The filling was also great, though you might want to remove most of the large feta cubes to prevent it from being too salty.
Vegetarian hot roll; hot carrots with seeds and truffle.
  • hot carrots with seeds & truffle ($5.50) - this side dish tasted mostly like boiled carrots (albeit sprinkled with black and white sesame) to me, though our friends assured us that when they ordered it last time, it had a much more liberal dose of truffle oil.
  • juices and sodas ($5) - these refreshing drinks felt healthier than you would get elsewhere, not very sugary. I am keen to come back to try their chocolate milk too, which is apparently made from almond milk, dates and cocoa.
Fresh carrot & coconut; cola.

Overall, Boy and Bird is a place that you can bring your entire family to, and it just makes you feel good. The decor is cheerful, the menu inviting, and you can rest assured that their chickens grew up free range at a Waikato poultry farm. Despite some touches of decadence, and a lack of variety in the vegetable department, the food is generally wholesome and satisfying. Unlike many other casual eateries, this chicken kitchen lets you book online for small groups too.

More good design: their business card folds out into the takeaway menu on the other side.

Restaurant Details

Boy and Bird
222 Ponsonby Road, Ponsonby
(09) 361 3222
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