CAFE CHAT

The Press - Zest - - Eat - With Ab­bie Napier

WHOLE FOOD

PORT CAKES

After a long wait full of an­tic­i­pa­tion, Ale­sha Bill­broughCollins has opened BearLion Foods in New Brighton. You might recog­nise BearLion from its stead­fast pres­ence at the Christchurch Farm­ers’ Mar­ket. Don’t worry, it will stay at the mar­ket de­spite its swanky new beach out­let. BearLion is what Ale­sha calls ‘‘a real food company’’, the idea be­ing to steer away from re­fined sugar and flour, ‘‘num­bers’’ and heav­ily pro­cessed food. Ale­sha is a chef of 16 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence and she works real won­ders mak­ing healthy food taste de­li­cious! It’s all about the flavours, not how many preser­va­tives you can cram in. So, the nitty gritty? BearLion opens this week and will be open ev­ery week, Thurs­day-Satur­day, 8.30am-2.30pm. It pro­vides deli food to eat now or to take away for eat­ing later as well as mak­ing into stuff to eat later. Pop in to re­ally get what’s go­ing on – well worth it. Check out BearLion Foods on Face­book or find it in New Brighton, Carn­aby Lane.

Lyt­tel­to­ni­ans will al­ready know Rushani Bowman from the Lyt­tel­ton Farm­ers’ Mar­ket and her var­i­ous com­mu­nity ac­tiv­i­ties in the port town­ship. For those who haven’t yet had a treat from Rushani’s, Christ­mas is the per­fect time to start. Rushani, of Rushani’s, makes strong, pow­er­ful cakes for the dare-to-be­d­if­fer­ent cake con­sumer, and she does a fab­u­lous job. She is known for her cre­ative use of spices and beau­ti­ful pre­sen­ta­tion. For Christ­mas, her menu in­cludes a boozy spice cake with two dif­fer­ent types of al­co­hol and a choco­late cherry stout cake with fresh cher­ries. Not a cake per­son? Rushani’s also sells bakewell tarts, floren­tines and other Christ­mas treats. Check it all out at rusha­nis.co.nz.

CHRIST­MAS TRAV­ELS

Many of you will be head­ing out of town this hol­i­day sea­son and might be at a loss for a spot to stop. Should you be hap­pen­ing by Lake Tekapo, you might want to check out two out­fits open down that way. Run 77 is a cafe named after the run num­bers given to High Coun­try sta­tions way back when. Run 77 is a kind of ‘‘front of house’’ for Mt Ger­ald Sta­tion, a lo­cal sup­plier. Note, the cafe is in cen­tral Tekapo, not ac­tu­ally at the sta­tion it­self! Tin Plate is another new joint sell­ing pizza, pasta and pi­adas (flat­breads) with a loose Ital­ian theme. Find Run 77 and Tin Plate in the Lake Tekapo town­ship.

SCH­WASS RE­TURNS

Restau­rant Sch­wass was Jonny Sch­wass’ pre-quake gem and since then he has gone on to projects like Har­lequin Pub­lic House and Mrs Hucks. But, this sum­mer, Jonny is bring­ing back the Restau­rant Sch­wass of old – kind of. He is set­ting it up in Har­lequin’s Draw­ing Room. It has all the hall­marks of the old restau­rant, how­ever, with Jonny and Fred­eric Fleury han­dling the food and the front of house. Try the valet car park­ing ser­vice and en­joy know­ing the menu is all about the best pro­duce avail­able on the day. At this stage, tem­po­rary Restau­rant Sch­wass will be open un­til De­cem­ber 22, $85 per per­son, book­ings es­sen­tial. Only 18 peo­ple seated each night. Phone Fred­eric on 021 029 03465 to book.

ROCK ON

The Allen St Rock Club is fi­nally open in, you guessed it, Allen St (near CPIT). The live mu­sic venue is promis­ing a fan­tas­tic spot for a late-night gig after din­ner or drinks at one of the lo­cal wa­ter­ing holes. Owner Tar­quyn Read has spared no en­ergy or ex­pense mak­ing sure it’s a one of a kind venue so def­i­nitely worth a look – even if it’s just for the pink toi­let pa­per. Allen St Rock Club is open Wed­nes­day to Satur­day, 7pm-3am or by ap­point­ment. Comes with a bar.

TOP CUTS

Chilling­worth Road and Free­mans Din­ing Room have made the fi­nal 12 restau­rants for the Sil­ver Fern Farms Premier Se­lec­tion Awards. The supreme win­ner of the award will be an­nounced on Fe­bru­ary 3 and in the mean­time the lo­cal fi­nal­ists se­lected dishes - Chilling­worth Road’s duo of Sil­ver Fern Farms Re­serve beef with red cab­bage and swede and Free­mans grilled Sil­ver Fern Farms Re­serve sir­loin, sticky rib tortellini, smoked mush­room ku­mara cro­quette and cele­riac puree will be avail­able for din­ers un­til the end of March.

Get real: BearLion Foods makes healthy look and taste de­li­cious.

Lake side: Run 77 is one of two new eater­ies open at Lake Tekapo.

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