Judg­ing the Top 50

Metro Magazine NZ - - Food -

This year, we kicked the com­pe­ti­tion to be named one of Auck­land’s best cheap eats up to the next level, by re­duc­ing the num­ber of restau­rants on the list to just 50. It re­sulted in some fierce de­bates among the judges, with our panel con­sid­er­ing the mer­its of more than 200 restau­rants to find the very best.

As a re­sult, some old favourites have dropped off — most no­tably Bal­moral’s New Flavour and long­stand­ing South In­dian restau­rant Satya (17 Great

North Rd). While they were more than ad­e­quate for a Top 100 list, when we asked our­selves, “Would we cross town to eat there?”, they sim­ply didn’t make the cut for the Top 50.

Among the no­table trends this year is hy­per-re­gion­al­ity, es­pe­cially among Malaysian and Chi­nese cuisines, with both Chongqing Noo­dles’ Sichuan­derived spice and Taka­puna’s Ma­mak tak­ing out spots in the cov­eted Top 10. Note to citysiders: the lat­ter’s Kuch­ingstyle lak­sas are well worth cross­ing the bridge for.

Try It Out, in Otahuhu, is back on the list and fight­ing fit but again this year, we found good Viet­namese food hard to come by. Where are the fresh herbs?

To be con­sid­ered for this list, an out­let had to be open for din­ner and of­fer a rea­son­able range of op­tions so that, when the bill was split, it came in at $20 per per­son (or less), ex­clud­ing drinks.

The judg­ing process be­gan with a long list of all the places we knew might have a chance at mak­ing the cut, or were new and needed to be re­viewed. We then de­bated the mer­its of these places at length at a judges’ meet­ing, whit­tling down the list by al­most half. Next, we went out and ate. As al­ways, we vis­ited anony­mously and paid for our meals. A fi­nal meet­ing con­sol­i­dated the list, and the cru­cial Top 10. The judges (see op­po­site) all write reg­u­larly about food in Auck­land.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.