Exciting new menu at Copthorne’s celebrated restaurant
Two important events are about to occur in the life of the Copthorne Hotel in Palmerston North.
Firstly Jimmy Cook’s, Copthorne’s celebrated restaurant, will shortly launch its new and exciting menu for 2016 and secondly the restaurant is one of 10 in the Manawatu region chosen to contest the inaugural Plate of Origin, held in conjunction with New Zealand’s Agri Investment Week in March.
Both will have an impact on the discerning diner and people who enjoy the best of food.
Executive Chef Jono Mawley is delighted with the direction and success that Jimmy Cook’s has had over the past 12 months. Contributing to this has been the expansive menu comprising of 52 dishes, all up, which has been well received by both locals and hotel guests. But now Jono wants to refine it further. ‘‘From next month I want to take those distinctive meals and further refine them with new flavours and new components within the dish, using new and different techniques we’ve developed over the last few years,’’ Jono says.
‘‘We want to continue creating a dining experience that is above par through flavour, flair and presentation. We’ll retain our very popular iconic staples, such as pork belly, lamb shank and pan seared scallops but give them a make-over."
Jono’s commitment this year is to enhance his selection of local ingredients even further, sourcing the restaurant’s meat and produce from regional suppliers wherever possible.
‘‘At a guess, I would say over 95 per cent of our a la carte menu is made on site – clearly a proud fact.’’
Creating a new menu is something that Jono and his team eagerly anticipate. It keeps them focused and on their toes, he says.
‘‘We factor in customer feedback, popularity of current dishes and research modern trends and innovative ideas. Watching a new menu come together gives the team a new level of motivation and satisfaction.’’
Jono and general manager Carey Lister are gratified with the way that local diners have embraced Jimmy Cook’s.
‘‘Our challenge is to change people’s thinking that a hotel restaurant is for guests only. It’s for everyone who wants to experience the best of food and service,’’ they say.
To attract local diners they have reduced beverage prices across the board. Now people can buy a beer or a glass of wine at an affordable price or a bottle of house wine from as little as $20.
‘‘We want to compete within the local market, offering fantastic food, beverage and service. Value for money is important, so reducing our beverage price is the way to go.’’
As part of the Plate of Origin, a new competition where top Manawatu restaurants are teamed up with some of the best chefs from around the country, Jimmy Cook’s has been partnered with highly commended Marlborough restaurant Arbour.
For Agri Investment Week, running from March 15-19, Jono and Arbour’s executive chef Bradley Hornby will use their talent to create a signature dish utilising two key components sourced from Marlborough.
The selected duo will be Ora king salmon and Cloudy Bay clams. A creative twist will be utilising Cloudy Bay clams from both Marlborough and locally – Foxton Beach.
That dish will be tasted and evaluated by the head judge from Cuisine magazine and available for diners at Jimmy Cook’s from March 15-19.
‘‘Plate of Origin is a fantastic idea and reflects well on our region as well as our restaurant, our team and the quality of our food,’’ Jono says. ‘‘It allows us to rub shoulders with the best chefs in the business which creates those opportunities where we can learn from each other.’’
The winning entry will be included in Cuisine’s food guide and, in doing so, recognises nationally the quality of food in the Manawatu.