I’m still full from my experience with Feast Wanaka. Being invited to experience Nick Honeyman’s pop-up restaurant “Le Petit Leon’ was like a whole new experience for me. 1) The restaurant usually only opens for nine weeks in Summer in a small town in France called St Leon Sur Vezere in the Dordogne. So having it here is a dream come true 2) I felt like I was in France for a moment as a french soundtrack enveloped my four courses 3) A pop-up like this doesn’t come around very often, so you have to get in quick and by quick I mean right now. Lucky is my middle name. (It’s not, my parents aren’t that mad)[/responsivevoice]
A chef working around the world and involved in a number of restaurants (including the Sofitel in Auckland) Nick’s beautiful fresh cuisine was brought to Wanaka by the clever people at Feast Wanaka. Bringing his ideas to diners for just four nights I got to sample some of the best fresh produce that is in the area. All on a beautiful Summer’s evening. Eating out in Wanaka looks so so good.
Four courses matched with Central Otago wines saw us lucky lucky people scoff some of the best food that this season offers us in the area. I’m still dreaming of the entree of Central Otago venison carpaccio (and will be for a long time). I wanted to smear it all over hot toast and would pay handsomely for someone to come round to my house every night and do just that. Offers anyone?
A main course of Wakanui scotch fillet with smoked potato smeared in Paris butter clearly demonstrated that if you eat it (and I did) you have to understand you shall be riding your bicycle up some large hills for the rest of the week. All totally worth it though. Paris butter come and get me.
Next up the beautiful world of fromage. See, I’m talking french already, and you thought it was difficult learning a new language. Three warm oozy new cheeses to try with the most delicious oatcakes and an Alpino Vin Gris to boot. Tangy sweet wine to you and me. I’m all class. But you knew that.
This is where it got a bit tricky. I thought I was going to stop. I should have stopped but it’s for you dear readers I go on. It’s tough but someone has to eat the dessert. A chocolate delice with new Summer berries from Wanaka. Honeycomb sealed the deal and a Valli Riesling brought it all together in one beautiful hug to end the night. I love a good hug as much as the next man, but add a riesling and I might stay for another course.
Feast Wanaka have been around only a short time bringing a gorgeous array of ‘pop-up’ events all over Wanaka. Delicious food and wine menus all created around the resplendent atmosphere of Wanaka in the Summertime, you’d be an absolute idiot to miss these. There’s such a beauty in coming up with an idea and running with it. Pop-ups are such a great way of doing this as you can appear as if by magic and abra-ca-dabra disappear again. All the while creating a whirlwind of ‘oohs’ and ‘aaahhhs’ to make you want to do it all over again. But because it’s a pop-up you can create the same idea but with just a different bit of magic. So one idea creates many different experiences. Well done Feast Wanaka. More please. As soon as possible.
Want to know more about what Feast Wanaka are doing? Now you can, and you’ll find me there talking french and trying to persuade Nick to come and live in my house. I told you I loved the carpaccio.