The death of chef and owner Martin Weiss late last year sadly saw Rotherhams of Riccarton close. It has now been sold and is being refitted and rebranded as Riccarton Bar and Kitchen. Masterchef 2012 contestant Matt Gilray has stepped up to the plate at the restaurant’s general manager. Gilray has been working in Margaret River in Western Australia as a winery manager, but the opportunity to sink his teeth into a new project was too good to refuse. Gilray, a Christchurch butcher at the time of his appearance in Masterchef was one of six finalists before he was eliminated. The opening date of Riccarton Bar and Kitchen will be revealed any day soon.
Put your summer garden efforts in the public eye and enter your prize tomatoes in the Opawa Farmers Market Tomato Festival. The festival is on this Sunday, March 9, when as well as judging, the whole market turns tomato for a day and offers up unique tomato-related produce. Prizes are awarded for heaviest and tastiest tomatoes, with judging by Richard Till and The Press gardening editor Mary LovellSmith. Every entry costs $2 with proceeds going to The Southern Seed Exchange. For the tastiest competition, judges will need to taste, so make sure you bring enough for everyone. Registration 9.30am-10.15am, followed by judging, 275 Fifield Tce.
SMALL AT CHILLINGWORTH
Chillingworth Road restaurant on Cranford St is offering another dining option for its customers. Chillingworth Bistro – in the bar/ coffee and cook school area at the entrance to the establishment - will operate separately from the main restaurant and will open Tuesday to Saturday, 5.30-9pm, from March 11. The menu will feature $25 mains, a range of desserts and entrees and will change frequently. The bistro will be completely separate from the main dining room where fine dining is the rule.
PICK ME UP
Garden City 2.0 has confirmed more locations for picking up its FoodBags. The bags of local produce will be available for pickup from Merivale and from Lower Cashmere/Hoon Hay from March 11. The new locations add to the project’s accessibility and allows more of us to buy local. Find Garden City 2.0 on Facebook.
Sometimes we get a little wrapped up in ourselves. Sometimes, it’s great to do something small for someone else. Pure Cafe Co is the latest Christchurch cafe to sign up for Suspended Coffee. The idea is, when you pay for your coffee, you also pay for another. The extra coffee is added to a list. If someone then comes along and is in need of a free coffee, they can ask for one of the coffees already paid for by someone else – no questions asked. Neediness is not really defined. You don’t have to be homeless to qualify, it is for anyone – pay day might be a bit far away or maybe coffee just isn’t in your budget. No judgment, it’s just a nice little way to pay it forward.Pure is at 100 Bealey Ave and 31 Birmingham Dr.
Otahuna Lodge is offering a unique opportunity during the colder months with its Lord of the Manor packages. Groups of 10 – including the one who wishes to be lord – will have Otahuna Lodge and grounds to themselves and enjoy luxury accommodation, pre-dinner drinks, canapes, a fivecourse dinner with matching wines, and breakfast next morning. Lord of the Manor packages ($5995 a night) are available May to September. Ideal for birthday celebrations, corporate events or any individual wondering what it would be like to be a knight of old in charge of all he surveys. More on Lord of the Manor at otahuna.co.nz.
Newrole: Matt Gilray takes on Riccarton Bar and Kitchen.
Of all you survey: Be Lord of the Manor at Otahuna Lodge. Ideal for celebrations and corporate events.
The best: Tomatoes will be tested to find the tastiest and heaviest.