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Published on June 7th, 2011 | by Ultimate OmNoms2
A nice dinner set for Christmas inside the Heritage Hotel’s very own Hectors Restaurant. This iconic building used to be one of the very first clothing factories for Hallensteins until it was turned into a hotel.
As soon as we walked in, I fell in love with the relaxed and contemporary atmosphere. The natural daylight bounced off the wooden decor in the atrium setting and gave the restaurant a warm welcoming touch. Spacious and bright with a high ceiling and native palms and paua shells all around, alohaa!
Straight after we ordered, we were served with complimentary bread rolls. 13 years of bringing sandwiches as school lunches had officially turned me off bread. But this was deliciously soft bread- fresh, warm and crunchy on the outside. Only wish bread at home can taste like this.
We both hadn’t tried it before so we were pretty excited to give it a go. I always thought I’d try this at an exotic country or place – had no idea it’s actually quite popular until talking to some friends later.
The meat tasted quite gamey, and quite lean compared to beef – almost looks a bit like beef, just with a lot less fat.
Accompanied with the ostrich was red lettuce with pumpkin puree. When I first saw this on the menu my first thought was “hmm, pumpkin? really?” It felt really foreign to me, mixing meat with pumpkin – I only know one other dish (traditional chinese) that mixes pumpkin with meat!
Nonetheless, it was a good balance – the pumpkin was quite sweet, but fitted really well with the texture and taste of the ostrich.
Cecilia’s entree: Seared scallops with sliced sausage.
Nothing like hearing the waiter at the next table say they ran out of scallops after taking our order. All MINE! I was a bit surprised though, it was only around 6pm and there weren’t that many diners at the time.
The sausages steal the limelight in this photo but the scallops were cooked perfectly and were a melt in the mouth sensation. I was a bit hesitant to try it with the beetroot on the side because I thought the strong taste would overwhelm the gentle flavour of the scallops but YUM what a way to start off a meal and tantalize the tastebuds!
I was a bit disappointed by this- the top wasn’t crispy enough which made it quite chewy and tough so cutting through it was a mission. I initially wanted to try this to compare it with the chinese crispy pot belly which is normally sliced into bite sized pieces.
Not what I expected from this restaurant – the entree felt like a good sized entree – but the main felt huge! The presentation was really disappointing though, especially after having a beautifully presented entree. I was expecting something a LOT more fancier.
Cooked well, but it was so boring! It felt like.. “lamb, beans, on mash, here you go, oh wait, here’s a tomato too” slapped on a plate, dinner is served. I’m probably exaggerating a bit here, but you get the point. Overall the dish felt like a typical everyday dish that your mum put’s in front of you, nothing fancy or exciting, but tastes good and filling! At least I didn’t walk away starving I guess.
If I could use one word to describe this dish, I’d use the word “Refreshing”. Looking back now, seeing this photo reminds me of how refreshing it was! Mandarin, pineapple, feijoa – how much more refreshing can you get? Especially with ice cream and panacotta too! It wasn’t a dish where everything balanced and complimented each other – it was a dish with purpose, simply to refresh. This dessert definitely cooled me down! It was like summer in the mouth.
Just FYI the gingerbread house is real! An edible Christmas decoration, what more can I ask? OMNOmnom.
35 Hobson St Auckland City
(09) 979 7434