The move to level 3 feels like a tiny baby step this time around. Restrictions are still heavy, bubbles still small and childcare centres are still closed. There is one thing that level 3 will give us that has me so excited it is a little scary. Take-away is back, baby!
Like everyone else, I am looking forward to embracing some greasy fast-food indulgence as fast as possible, but once that itch has been scratched, I am going to want something special. As was the case last time we were in this position some of Auckland’s most awarded restaurants have embraced their new normal and packaged their gourmet delights up for us to take home.
This is by no means a comprehensive list of every take-out that will be available in Auckland, but rather a list of high-end eateries that are serving up gourmet meals. We all deserve something a little fancy after the last six weeks. Don’t we?
The innovative Auckland restaurant will be offering meal kits to recreate the experience in your own kitchen. Their [email protected] offering includes a selection of starters, main , sides and dessert. The menu is pre-set, apart from the main, where you have the choice of either slow-cooked lamb shoulder with black garlic glaze, oregano and lamb jus, shaved fennel, raddichio and feta or slow-cooked pork cheek served with pork and apple jus, spiced pear butter glaze, raddichio and shaved pear and puffed pork crackling.
The meal is for two people and it comes chilled with instructions on heating, assembly and plating up your meal so that you feel like you are really dining out. Culprit is offering pre-orders of their meal kits on its website now. The meals are $125 and serve two. Get in quickly as this coming Friday and Saturday have already sold out.
Level 1/12 Wyndham St, Auckland CBD
All of the amazing Cazador Deli products will be available in level 3, including its pies, baked goods, sandwiches and, most importantly, their amazing hampers. On Friday and Saturday nights, it will be offering a specific dinner offering, this week will be charcoal-grilled venison kebabs with flatbread, saffron rice, hummus and traditional condiments.
Meal kit numbers are limited so Cazador recommends pre-ordering. You can also add wine to your orders if you wish. The offering is guaranteed to be popular, so get in early and pre-order.
854 Dominion Rd, Mount Eden
The last time Auckland moved from level 4 to level 3, Cassia hit the ground running and this time will be no exception. The only difference is Sid Sahrawat and his team will only be offering pick up this time around, no delivery service.
Their meal kits are designed to serve two, with order cut off midday the day prior to pick-up. There are three kits available, a vegetarian, chicken and lamb kit. Cost ranges from $90-$95. Your meal comes with snacks, entrée, mains, sides and tiramisu for dessert. If Goan lamb chops or tandoori chicken sound like the best idea ever then this is for you. All you need to do is heat and eat.
5 Fort Lane, Auckland CBD
Sid at the French Café
Another great offering from Sid Sahrawat and the chefs at The French Café. They have designed three heat and eat meal kits which are available for pre-order online. The take-out options are available from Thursday to Sunday. French Café’s meal kits are $95 and serve two, with order cut off midday the day prior to pick-up.
The options include the chef’s signature meal kit with an entrée of tuna, scallop, kohlrabi & watercress, main of duck with kumara puree, masterstock & boy choy, salad greens and house made bread and butter on the side and a chocolate, raspberry and hazelnut dessert. There is also a vegetarian and pescatarian offering which are just as drool-worthy.
210 Symonds St, Eden Terrace
Delightful east Auckland restaurant Ampersand will be offering all of the things we have missed most during level 4, including your morning coffee. During the day it will be offering a range of goodies for pick-up including your flat white, cheese scones, blueberry muffins, gourmet sandwiches and truffle fries with parmesan.
For a break from cooking in the evening, Ampersand has everything from red wine and port glazed beef cheeks with smoked potato puree to a free-range crispy chicken burger. Don’t forget to order dessert, they will be serving up their signature sticky toffee pudding with salted caramel and whipped cream.
4/228 Orakei Rd, Orakei
This central Auckland eatery was named by Viva’s restaurant review team as the best in Auckland, and the title is well deserved. The team are chomping at the bit to get back into the kitchen and offering a collection service when we hit level 3. The offering will be a ready-to-eat, two-course set menu that will change daily.
The dinner offer will be for three days each week, Thursday to Saturday, but orders will need to be ore-ordered by 1pm the day prior. The two-course meal for two is $85. Options change daily, with a main of beef short rib, kohlrabi, kale and nam jung, and a brioche and butter pudding to follow.
Corner of Galway & Commerce Sts, Britomart
Best known for its carefully crafted degustation menus, The Grove has mixed things up for level 3 offering take-away orders. The offering is a three-course meal, designed for two people for $120. You can choose your options for entrée, main and dessert, but the two of you will need to agree as you will be enjoying the same options.
Choices include chicken, bacon and leek terrine to start, beef cheek Wellington for mains and banoffee pie for dessert. There are, of course several other dishes to choose from, including vegetarian options.
St Patricks Square, Wyndham St
Ebisu is offering a restricted menu of some of their select favourites for food lovers in level three. Indulge in a selection of fresh sashimi and sushi favourites or opt for their new omakase meals which are designed to serve four to six people and include a mixture of dishes ready to eat and hot dishes to finish at home.
Ebisu also gets extra “yay” points as they will have bottled cocktails available to order as well including yuzu margaritas, yuhi negronis and lychee Sake-tinis).
116-118 Quay St
One Tree Grill
Epsom favourite One Tree Grill will be offering up its famous fare for take-away and delivery (Epsom only for a $10 fee). You can choose from a selection of entrees, mains, sides and desserts.
Your meal will be assembled in take-out boxes ready to eat. Offerings include citrus cured ora king salmon for entree, main choices include twice-cooked pork belly or butternut pumpkin and ricotta gnocchi, vegetable sides include smoked potato mash and dessert options such as vanilla crème caramel or dark chocolate mousse are yours for the taking.
Orders can be made online, these are not pre-ordered kits so order the evening you want to enjoy it but allow 45 minutes to an hour for preparation, this is not fast food.
9 Pah Rd, Epsom
The little brother of One Tree Grill, Little Jimmy’s is always a wonderful dining experience and in level 3 they are bringing that home. Their delivery (Epsom only) and contactless pick-up menu is well priced and varied and Jimmy’s is the only eatery on this list offering specific kids options.
Pair the wagyu beef short rib with a ride of their famous curly fries while the kids share one of their gourmet pizzas or their own cheeseburger. Then choose between cheesecake and sticky date pudding for dessert.
557 Manukau Rd, Epsom
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