7.51am, Thursday 19th July, 86 Federal Street, Auckland, North Island, New Zealand
Morning folks, and the Auckland harbour is still shrouded in fog at the minute, and I’m toasty warm on the back kitchen deck at 86 Federal Street in the city, where you’ll find the fabulous old Kiwi scool hole in the wall ‘Depot Eatery and Oyster Bar’. This is local chef Al Brown’s own place, all salvaged pine floorboards, old industrial style steel shade shed lights, butchershop ceramic tyles, and recycled refrigeration panels. Its more the old ‘cornershop in a country town’ feel rather than designer retro…..it would be easy to think that the place had been locked up 40 years ago, and opened up yesterday, dusted off, and the fresh local produce just put in the fridge to start the new week. The produce is definitely local with names on the menu like Mahurangi (north of Auckland) “small plump and creamy” Oysters, Rangitikei chicken, Waikane pork salami, and Gruff Junction (that’s on the South Island) Gouda. Oh yes…….and the coffee is way better than what they probably would have had 40 years ago. It’s ‘Havana’ coffee – locally roasted down in Wellington, which is the city that clings to the bottom of the North Island, and just happens to be the nation’s capital.
So I’m having breakfast, and of the three options – I’ve gone with Depot’s own muesli, topped with stewed rhubarb and yoghurt. And, to finish off the cereal, I’ve got some local milk in the little glass bottles that I haven’t seen since we were kids – we used to get one every morning recess time, back in primary school! The doors open at 7am, and the other two options are what I’ll work my way through over my next two mornings here in Auckland before heading back to the Barossa early Sunday morning. That would be the ‘Egg and Bacon Doonas ‘ (that’s a quilt for those folks from outside the Australasian area – means that the bread roll wrapped around the egg and bacon filling will be really soft and fluffy) and the freshly cooked warm Beignets with a fresh passionfruit curd! But for now – it’s the ‘I’m doing the healthy right thing ‘ choice for me.
Friday 20/12/2012 – the Bacon and Egg Doona. And yes…..very fluffy roll, magic tomato relish.
And free ginger nut biscuits to go with your coffee!