Queenstown Holiday Part 2 | Food

Before we went on this trip, we had so many recommendations on where to eat. Our list was so long and we knew it was impossible to go to them all. There are so many good food places in Queenstown and we were pretty happy with all the ones we went to. I thought I’d dedicate a separate post about it because it would’ve been too long to fit in my first QT blog post.

We were in Queenstown for 8 days and we were staying at a hotel so we had to go out to eat. That was not a problem in QT though because there are so many good options.

Brunch

We didn’t wake up too early (our QT hotel bed is so comfy) so we mostly skipped breakfast and had brunch instead.

My favourite brunch place was Yonder. We went here twice because it was good. It’s quite popular though so in the weekend, it was packed. We also shared meals as the portion sizes are big and we wouldn’t have been able to finish one dish each. On the left is the Grilled Chicken Flatbread and on the right is the Pork Belly Burger. Both were really good. Highly recommend this place and they have a lot of tables too.

  • Vudu Cafe & Larder – Another cafe we visited but I didn’t take any photos for some reason. This is much smaller than Yonder and it was also busy when we went. We got the Vudu Benedict and also a sweet slice from the cabinet as it looked good and also tasted great.
  • Fergbaker – The Ferg in QT is quite an establishment. Fergbaker is great for quick and easy breakfast/brunch. They have pies and pastries. I got some pan au chocolat, lemon meringue tart from them. Also coffees to go.

Dinners

Dinners were our main meal in QT. We were quite flexible with brunch/lunch and we didn’t have all our brunches in town (we also went and ate at places in Arrowtown, Gibbston and Glenorchy) but for all our dinners, we all went out and dined in different places in Queenstown. They were all pretty good.

My Thai Lounge

We arrived in QT on a Saturday and a long weekend due to the Queen’s Birthday public holiday. It was busy and we struggled getting dinner reservations to other places as they were all fully booked. We ended up going to My Thai Lounge and we had a lovely meal here.

I didn’t take photos of each dish but we had great cocktails to start with. Our drinks were quite tropical and delicious but it was 4 degrees outside. We got money bags (my favourite) and then the pork belly & pineapple red curry. It was great. After this whole blog post, you’ll be able to tell that we love pork belly. It is probably our favourite meat and we tend to order it. For dessert we got the Thai Crispy Pancakes (right photo). I’ve never tried it before and it was a lovely way to end our meal as it was light and crispy.

Blue Kanu

For our second night in town, we went to Blue Kanu which was on our list of places to try.

I got the Lava Flow cocktail which was basically a pina colada with strawberry and it was so damn good. For food, we opted for 2 mains to share: Coconut & Caramel braised pork belly and the Confit Balinese Duck with steamed pancakes. We initially wanted the Crispy whole rakiura tarakihi but sadly they were out of it and it wasn’t even a late dinner! Anyway, we still had a great meal.

Instead of ordering dessert from Blue Kanu, we decided to stop by Patagonia on the way back to the hotel and got gelato instead.

This was only one scoop and it’s massive. I struggled to finish it but it was delicious. You also have to get their hot chocolates. I think I got the Patagonia hot choc 3x during our trip.

Margo’s

This place came highly recommended to us so of course, we had to go and try it. Thankfully it did not disappoint.

Since Margo’s is a Mexican place, we had to get margaritas. I had the frozen strawberry margarita and Max got the Grizzly Beargarita which he said was good.

For food we had the Coconut Prawns which is a must order at Margo’s. It was delicious. We also had the Duck Carnitas Quesadilla to share. For dessert, I couldn’t resist the churros which was lighter than the churros I’ve had. Overall, we had an amazing meal here.

Fergburger

We couldn’t go to QT and not have any Fergburger especially as Max hasn’t tried before. My top tip for Fergburger is to give them a call to order and all you have to do is pick it up. It will save you lining up for a long time. When we went, it was during the week after the long weekend so it wasn’t too busy but I’m glad we called first as it made it easier.

Their burgers are absolutely massive. We also got fries and onion rings and we were so full afterwards.

Tanoshi

We love Japanese food, it is our favourite Asian cuisine (besides Filipino for me of course). This place came highly recommended to us as well.

I had the yuzu shu to drink and it was my first time trying it. It is so good, I’d drink a whole bottle of this. It’s my kind of drink because it doesn’t taste alcoholic. I like umeshu as well which Max introduced me to. He’s lived in Japan so I got to try more Japanese food/drinks due to him.

For food, we opted for the ‘Tanoshi’s Trust the chef‘ which had a selection of their classic and most popular dishes. In the end we had:
  • Edamame
  • Sashimi-mori
  • Gyu tataki (this was delish!)
  • Tori ten
  • Hotate bata-yaki (grilled scallops)
  • Gyoza – house made fresh every day
  • Okonomiyaki (Osaka style)

Overall, the trust the chef selection was amazing. We got to try many dishes and we left the place so satisfied.

Saigon Kingdom

We wanted an easy dinner one night as we were pretty tired. Saigon Kingdom was closest to our hotel (although all of these places were walking distance) and also came highly recommended by a friend.

All the alcoholic drinks I’ve ordered during our trip have been great, especially the cocktails. I got the Hurricane which had rum, passionfruit, pineapple juice and lemon juice. It was delicious and Max got the Red Lotus which had lychee liqour, vodka and cranberry juice.

For starters, I had a last minute decision to order 2 things: homemade pork spring rolls and the seafood square rolls. Both were good and I loved the wrapper which isn’t your typical spring roll wrapper. For mains we shared the Hmong Styled Crispy Whole Fish. The fish was phenomenal! A whole crispy fish is so good and took me back to the Philippines as I grew up eating whole fish cooked like this. We absolutely demolished it because it was so good. Highly recommend this place.

Jervois Steak House

Our last night in Queenstown was meant to be Friday night and to top off our trip, we made a reservation at Jervois Steak House for a fancy meal.

I’ve been to JSH in Auckland years ago but this was both our first time in JSH Queenstown. As it is a steakhouse, we skipped starters and entrees and basically went straight to steaks. It was a great experience having someone explain all their different types of steaks. They bring out a board of their meat and explain each one, where they’re from, size, type etc.

After some deliberation (it wasn’t that easy as all the selection sounded great), we chose the 3 steaks on the menu :

  • Zen-Noh – wagyu beef from Miyazaki Japan (Ieft steak)
  • Carrara Wagyu – from Queensland Australia (right steak)
  • Diamantina – hybrid wagyu and angus from Australia (middle steak)

For our sides, we chose the truffle bacon mac ‘n’ cheese and some roasted mushrooms. For the sauces we got the red wine just (comes with all the steaks), cafe de Paris butter and black garlic butter.

The Japanese wagyu steak was next level amazing. We got it because there aren’t many places in NZ where you order it and it did not disappoint. It was so buttery smooth and tasted differently to the other steaks. The others were great too but you can really tell the difference with the Zen-noh. Absolutely amazing. The Diamantina which was the hybrid wagyu and angus was also really good. All the steaks barely needed the sauce. The red wine jus was enough.

Our meal in JSH is not really something we have all the time. It was a pricey meal but it was special. The steaks were next level. If you’re after an indulgent meal, JSH is one to check out.

Tatsumi

As I mentioned above, JSH was meant to be our last dinner in QT but as I explained in Part 1 of our QT trip, our flight home got cancelled due to the snow and we got to stay another day. For our actual final dinner in QT, we tried another Japanese restaurant.

We weren’t overly hungry and I also got a bit drunk from my wine tasting that afternoon (more on this on Part 3 of my QT trip haha) so we ordered lightly. For once, I didn’t order a cocktail and stuck to green tea instead which made me feel much better.

We had sashimi platter for starter which was delicious with salmon, kingfish, tuna, prawns and scallops. I really liked their Vegetable Tempura as it had different vegetables and came with salts and tempura sauce. Not every restaurant will give you salt with tempura and this came with yuzu citrus salt and curry salt. The tempura paired so well with the salt.

We also got the Chawan-Mushi which Max ordered as he has tried it in Japan before. I’ve never tried it before. It’s a steamed egg custard with prawn, shiitake mushroom, fish and chicken. It’s something I probably wouldn’t have ordered if it wasn’t for Max. It was good, warm and comforting.

For dessert, we couldn’t resist the Black Sesame Crème Brûlée. We usually don’t tend to get desserts at Japanese restaurants as there isn’t much of a selection but Tatsumi is different. They had a good selection of desserts. This Black Sesame Crème Brûlée was so good, I want to go back and have this again.

Tatsumi wasn’t really on our list but we came across it while walking around town and I’m glad we did. It’s a small restaurant so booking is recommended. I would love to come back here to try more of their dishes.

Overall, all our dinner meals were great. I have zero regrets on any of the places we tried and I’d gladly go back to all of the above when I’m in QT again.


Other places we also tried:

  • Captains Restaurant (left photo) – this was actually the first place we went to. When we checked into our hotel, we walked to town and wanted a late lunch. We were both craving some chips and Max googled where to have truffle fries and it led us to here. We got their truffle oil fries with parmesan and herbs and calamari. I got a margarita because we were officially on holiday. Captain’s truffle fries were pretty good!
  • Balls and Bangles (right)If you’re after a sweet treat and love doughnuts, check out Balls and Bangles. Their doughnuts are HUGE. I couldn’t resist and we got the lemon meringue and salted caramel brownie. It’s like two desserts in one because you get the dougnut and then the toppings. They also have bagels and shakes if you’re after those.
  • Queenie’s Dumplings – I will probably post about this in Part 3 but we also had Queenie’s dumplings in Glenorchy. The most random but most beautiful place I’ve ever had dumplings in my life. Apparently they’re a popular Glenorchy spot but they also have one in Queenstown.

That’s all for the majority of the food we had in Queenstown. All of these places were great and would go back to again. There is also so much more that we haven’t tried. You’re spoiled for choice in QT.

My next (and should be the last) QT trip blog post will be all about our adventures outside QT town: Glenorchy, Arrowtown, Gibbston and Cromwell. It also involves all the wineries we visited and enjoyed. I didn’t include them here as the wineries are just outside QT and within the Gibbston Valley area.

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