Unphogettable (Havelock North, New Zealand)
This was the last few days of our trip and heading back to Auckland we spent a couple of days in the Hawkes Bay region. After visiting the Arataki Honey Centre and Te Mata Peak, we were looking for a place to have our late lunch, the nearest town was Havelock North. A small vibrant town but it was quite late lunch so finding a place to dine in was quite challenging, we tried several places and they were already close as it was near 2:00 PM and Unphogettable was one of the places that was still open but will be closing service soon, luckily the guy who was there gladly accepted us to dine in.
As we sat, we checked the menu and there were few things on offer, it was not a multi-page menu which was good as I find complicated menu’s stressful, a one pager I found was the best especially when you are hungry and rushing to your next destination. There were several of us who dine in and probably in a small town it is quite a rare occasion so it is understandable that the service was quite slow, and it was. We asked the waiter how long it would take for our orders to come out and he asked us whether we were in a hurry, to which we told him we were as we needed to be in a hot spring at a certain time and that it was two hours away from this place . They did a great job in pushing the orders through which we were happy with as it came out literally minutes after we told them our situation.
There were a few orders and the starters came out first
Wontons (NZ$10.00) lightly fried egg pastry wontons filled with pork
Traditional Platter (NZ$25.50) a mixture of sensational Vietnamese flavours x2 spring rolls, x2 summer rolls, x2 wontons and x2 pork skewers
Fresh summer rolls (NZ$10.50) paper rolls filled with vermicelli noodle, pork and salad
then came the mains
Fried Rice (NZ$18.00) Rice dish stir fried in a wok with beef, chicken, pork and shrimp
Stir fry noodles (NZ$18.90) combination of beef, egg noodles and intense flavours stir fried together in traditional wok
Grilled pork on rice (NZ$19.90) A combination of steamy jasmine rice with tender pork cutlet, crispy pickled salad and shrimp
Now for the verdict. Well, all the food were tasty, most pork dishes tasted the same, sweet and savoury almost similar to the Filipino tocino. The fresh summer roll was also good as well as all of the starters. The service was amazing, the waiter even arranged our plates in a certain way like it was measured with all of us having the same distance from the edge of the table, the attention to detail was phenomenal. The place was so clean as well, it felt like a new restaurant, it was spotless and the tables were smear free. Where it falls though is the rice, I think because our orders were rushed the rice was undercooked and it was al dente, with a nutty raw centre, it was the same rice used for the fried rice which made it worse, I think they did not have left over rice to use as they were already closing. Other than that, we give these 5 stars for service and cleanliness, and if the rice was not undercooked perhaps, it would also get good ratings as well.
Address: 3/4 Napier Road, Havelock North 4130, New Zealand
Phone: +646 650 0222
Food looks GOOD! I love the name Unphogettable too…
Nice play with the name pho…but by the way, where’s the pho? I love Vietnamese!