Warm, friendly Cider House

Central Otago Mirror - - FEATURES -

At­mos­phere:

First im­pres­sions of the Cider House are cool wood and lime green. It’s got a fresh­ness about it which is sum­mery and spa­cious, even on a chilly win­ter day when the fog is yet to lift. There were no other din­ers when we first ar­rived but the fire was go­ing and we were in­vited to take a seat in front of it. Room was made for the sleep­ing baby in a pram as we set­tled in to read the menu. A bit an­noy­ingly, the spe­cials were on a board out­side and al­though they were re­peated to us as we walked in, no-one was will­ing to make the ex­cur­sion into the cold just to run through them again.

Food:

The Cider House has a cabi­net packed full of scrummy look­ing good­ies in­clud­ing chunky cheese rolls and a veg­etable stack that looked to die for. How­ever, two of us had al­ready been smit­ten by one of the spe­cials, a warm chicken salad $15, its name cap­tur­ing that feel­ing of warmth and fresh­ness the cafe seemed to cap­ture. It ar­rived with plenty of greens, a touch of av­o­cado, some brie, car­rots and cap­sicum but, cold chicken. It was cooked. Dis­ap­point­ingly, it was not warm. The dish was also quite bland and would eas­ily have been brought to

The Cider House, Cromwell. life with a flavour­some dress­ing. Emma loved her pasta – a ba­con, mushroom and creamy basil pesto con­coc­tion ($16.50), which was just the right amount and not too rich, while Jess also en­joyed her steak sand­wich ($15.50) which came with ba­con, egg, lots of salad and a de­cent chunk of steak (which was a tad tough). The are plenty of other op­tions on the menu in­clud­ing eggs bene­dict ($16.50 with ba­con or $19.50 with salmon), pan­cakes ($14), BLTs ($13.50), na­chos ($14.50) as well as a page of wood-fired, 12-inch piz­zas to choose from (from $20 to $24). I would be tempted to give them a go next time.

Ser­vice:

Staff on the day were the hus­band and wife own­ers and they were kept pretty busy do­ing ev­ery­thing, from tak­ing or­ders to cook­ing and look­ing af­ter their guests. They were al­ways ready with a smile and ea­ger to please. Our cof­fees ar­rived quickly on our ar­rival. How­ever, it was a long wait for lunch – un­der­stand­able as more guests moved in prob­a­bly stretch­ing re­sources.

Ver­dict:

Friendly, fresh, invit­ing, warm, The Cider House Cafe and Bar is a com­fort­able place to be with friends, fam­ily, kids and even for a work meet­ing.

Dress­ing re­quired: Warm chicken salad.

Fresh ap­pear­ance:

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