Good Food Guide - - Auckland -

This charm­ing restau­rant must be one of the coun­try’s quirki­est. It looks a bit like a mod­ern take on a game lodge; the whiteplas­tered walls adorned with taste­ful taxi­dermy, with wooden ta­bles, vel­vet ban­quettes and a bil­low­ing striped ceil­ing adding colour and warmth. There’s a real sense that this is a place with heart, and in­deed you might tuck into sev­eral while you’re here. Cazador means “hunter” in Span­ish, and here chef-owner Dar­iush Lo­laiy (above left) cel­e­brates the glory of meat, specif­i­cally game and of­fal. No fil­let steaks here – sup on a hearty pheas­ant broth laden with ten­der con­fit pheas­ant and hominy, savour an unc­tu­ous pig tail or feast on slow-roast thar. Ser­vice, led by co-owner Re­becca Smidt (above right), is warm and knowl­edge­able, and the thought­ful wine, craft beer and sherry selections will put the fin­ish­ing touch on an ex­cel­lent evening. 854 Do­min­ion Rd, Bal­moral, ph: 09- 620 8730, Din­ner Tues-sat; mains $34 IN BRIEF Hip­ster hunt­ing lodge serv­ing game and good times

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