City’s top pre-the­atre bites

Key to a night at the the­atre is the per­fect pre-show meal.

Central Leader - - HEALTH -

The pre-the­atre meal is a tricky minx, slightly ear­lier and a smidgen lighter than one’s usual din­ner. It also hinges on speedy ser­vice and the­atre prox­im­ity. But don’t stress, we’ve got five of the best.

1. El­liot sta­bles, 39 El­liot St, for Q, the Civic, Sky City, the Her­ald and Aotea Cen­tre

El­liot Sta­bles right­fully boasts of it­self as an ‘‘epi­curean vil­lage’’ of ar­ti­san eats. It has a ca­sual but cherry at­mos­phere.

Gusto’s pre-the­atre menu served be­tween 5pm and 6.15pm prom­ises your and your date’s com­ple­tion of a shared two-course meal within an hour. We rec­om­mend their grilled snap­per with pis­ta­chio, ca­pers, lemon and chilli.

3. Le Garde Manger, 466 Queen St, best placed for Q, Aotea Cen­tre, the Her­ald and the Civic

Le Garde Manger serves crepes both savoury and sweet. We rec­om­mend crepe Suzette flambe´ed at your ta­ble with Grand Marnier.

Tapas are the per­fect prethe­atre bite be­cause they are fast. We rec­om­mend the Pescado Plato Iberico: a plat­ter for two of smoked salmon, dips, squid rings and chorizo.

5. Baduzzi, 10-26 Jel­li­coe St, North Wharf, Wyn­yard Quar­ter for the newATC venue

Thank you, Italy, for the hum­ble meat­ball. And good on you, Baduzzi, for re­vamp­ing it via Fiord­land cray­fish, wild red deer, smoked egg­plant, and lamb with pre­served lemon. This is Auck­land’s finest New York-Ital­ian vibe.

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