Apero Food and Wine (Auckland CBD, New Zealand)
I discovered a hidden gem, it’s an amazing restaurant, small and located in a place you won’t expect, especially for someone that delivers amazing simple but impeccable quality food. In their site it says this is a place to enjoy good food, good wine and good company and we surely did the last time we went here.
Apero Food and Wine, located in K’Road, places like this is meant for Parnell or Ponsonby but this gem shines in this vibrant road. A small restaurant with a very cosy, personal and intimate feel, this place only sits around 20 to 25 people max. I love the ambiance here, it’s a well thought of place.
We came here for a small celebration after one of our projects went live, we just booked it without any knowledge of how this place works. As we came in, we enjoyed several Garage Project Beers and some of their amazing wines, then the chef came asking us what do we feel eating tonight? Without looking at the menu we just told them we love meat and some sides, he said let me handle it for you, he will deliver food based on our request.
I love that personal touch, keeping the menu out of the scene and the chef asking for what we feel eating that night, its partly a surprise but you have to put a lot of trust for the chef to deliver, which I can tell you now that it exceeded all our expectations.
We started with some Bag of bread and butter (NZ$8.00) which came really warm. Bread was nice texture, chewy and soft plus the butter was amazing!
Then came the Goats cheese croquettes with Kamahi honey (NZ$8.00) which was served together with Falafel with coriander yoghurt (NZ$8.00). Initially I though goats cheese would be too salty for a croquette, but they did it really well specially with that honey that intensifies the creamy flavours and mellows down its saltiness, truly a match made in heaven.
The chef also served their Apéro charcuterie platter (NZ$29.00) which consists of pate, boiled egg, pickles, mustard, jamon, salami, chutney and some sort of terrine. Another good platter, I specially loved the pate, it’s so well made it feels like you are eating some foie gras rather than a normal pate, it was buttery, milky, smooth and savoury.
Next came our starter which started with the New Season Whangamata Scallops Lemon & Capers 100g (NZ$22.00), a very good seafood entree, well cooked, very tender, very juicy, very tasty is all I can say. Very addictive.
Then we had this wonderful trio of mushrooms which is prepared with Oyster, shitake, portobello, garlic & herbs (NZ$15.00). I am a mushroom lover, so this is a no brainer.
Now did you remembered we mentioned we love meats, but there were no serious meats yet served, no one noticed it. The food was so good even at this stage even the meat lovers did not notice it, but don’t worry meat comes next, it was an unexpected move by the chef, but he hit us right in the spot.
At first when we told him we want meat I though he will be serving some nice steak but was surprised when he took out some Pork sausage (NZ$18.00 per 1/4m) served with pickles & mustard. You might say why sausage? It was one hell of a great sausage, well-seasoned and the texture was phenomenal, it’s not your normal minced meat or sausage paste, instead it made with chunky meat, we love it so much, best sausage I tried in my life.
For the next meat was this Cassoulet Duck Leg Confit with Pork Belly (NZ$34.00), duck and pork was so nice, skin was crispy on both specially the pork. Salty delicious which gives so much flavour to the beans, just the mere thought of it while I write this makes me drool.
Meat were accompanied with vegetables and the first one was the Roasted cauliflower, goats curd, almond & mint (NZ$16.00) which I forgot to take a photo off then this roasted cabbage which is out of this world. Honestly this is the best cabbage I ever tried in my life, even the tables neighbouring us who ordered this swear by it. It was so good, I am confused whether I would choose this over a nice cut of steak. I will definitely try to recreate this at home, amazing flavours smoky, burnt, tangy and mildly sweet concoction, its perfect as it is.
To top off this real good dinner we had the Apéro sweet treat (NZ$9.00) which basically is a crispy soft fried pastry filled with some sort of Nutella ice cream.
I had fun! this was a great dinner, one of the best dinners I had in my life. So, I suggest when you come in here, let the chef know what you need and let him handle your needs and be surprised.
Apero Food and Wine
Address: 280 Karangahape Rd, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
Phone: +649 373 4778