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Dec 25, 2010 07:28 AM

Aus / NZ trip coming up, different take on recommendations question

HI, have been through the boards here and have some great ideas for higher end places to go.

What I am looking for here, which is sprinkled a bit through other threads, is the following

For this type of travel, eating for about 3/4 of the days go as follows

Up early, looking for a great breakfast spot. Very active morning, Look for great, casual lunches, an can go to higher end places for lunch service instead of dinner sometimes, however really good, simple fresh seafood on the beach with a beer or a great pub lunch on a patio, fresh sushi / fish and chips from a great takeout spot, etc.. is more appealing than sti down linen service most days. Often, by dinnertime we are exhausted, and often stock up on wine, good cheeses, fruit, bread, etc.. and eat in (do not like paying high end prices for a meal when I can barely keep my eyes open, but every 3rd or 4th day we do slow down during the day to go out for a nice restaurant meal).

Looking for recommendations for great breakfast and casual lunch (pub / beach / local fav restaurant) spots to hit enroute. On any given day we can end up anywhere, so I tend to map these out and wherever we end up, we look for our list of what is close.

Places we are going to include in the trip (some 1 day, some 3 - 4 days): Sydney, Melbourne, Great Ocean Road, Queenstown, Akaroa, Kaikoura, Christchurch. anywhere in those areas would be great. We are going to other areas as well but food is covered there already.

Will be happy to report back when done, but anyone who has ideas that fit the great breakfast and great casual lunch type spots would be ideal. Also, any local markets to get some back in the hotel make our own light fare meals to nibble over some wine meals would be appreciated as well.


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  1. Can only help you with Christchurch, but here goes ...

    We usually hit Cafe Roma on Oxford Terrace for breakfast, as it's close to where we stay. Coffee's good, and each cup comes with a mini chocolate fish for an extra sugar rush. Food's good too - Eggs Benny and the usual suspects. Service can be somewhat quirky/distracted, but that's not unusual for ChCh (expats speaking from experience).

    C1 Espresso is another good choice for brunch - further south from the city centre and a bit more 'boheme' in attitude. Didn't get a chance to visit them last time we were in ChCh (3 weeks ago), but their reputation is still good with the locals.

    C4 Coffee is also in the league of serious coffee (I believe they started as an offshoot of C1). Food offerings are limited as they're operating from a warehouse, the original location having been damaged in the recent earthquake. Spoke with the owner lots when we were there - nice guy.

    There are a plenty of pubs and patios further along Oxford Terrace - mostly operate as bar/nightclubs, so food quality is OK, not dire, but not spectacular. Good selection of beers though.

    Wine can be purchased in convenience stores, but VinoFino is a good store to visit if you'd like to try more of a variety of NZ and Aus wines (just south of the Durham & St. Asaph Street intersection).

    Hope that helps, enjoy your trip!

    2 Replies
    1. re: PagerFax

      Thanks for the suggestions, will take a look at each of them. Sounds like what I am looking for. Very much appreciated. Since ChCH is your area, any thoughts on Akaroa or Kaikoura since they are close?

      1. re: pendlebg

        Wish I could help, but it's been at least 20 years since I was in either town. I do recall lots of roadside tearooms and seafood places in Kaikoura.

        On a side note, I'd recommend kumara fries if you have the chance to try them (kumara is the local sweet potato). They are our fondest food memory - brought from a food van on a beach in the Bay of Islands - from our final roadtrip before emigrating.

    2. Sydney and Melbourne well covered on the board.

      Great Ocean Road is pretty weak, with the exception of above average fish and chips in Lorne and Apollo Bay and the Wye River General Store. Save yourself, however if you are near Geelong you are a half hour from Loam, my current favourite restaurant - it is on the Bellarine though so doesn't 'join' the GOR.

      1 Reply
      1. re: mr_gimlet

        Thanks, have heard about the fish and chips in Lorne and that is on my list. WIll take a look at swinging through Bellarine enroute from GOR back to Melbourne. Thanks

        Will keep searching the board for Sydney / Melbourne. I have found all the higher end spots on the board already, so they are very well represented. However am slowly picking the threads apart picking up recommendations for what I am looking for, anything you might have to add would be appreciated but you are correct in that I have a list started for Syd / Mel already.

      2. Just returned from Au. In Melbourne, go to Satan's...?, for tapas (Fitzroy area). In Sydney, Bangbang had good breakfast, including Welsh Rarebit, great corn fritters, fish sandwich. Also liked Udon in Darlinghurst, Spice I Am for Thai and Mamek for roti. In Bondi Beach, Trio had best breakfast we had anywhere (also supposed to be good for dinner), and heard Brown Sugar also was good. Try the Fish Pie at Brown Sugar for dinner. We tried all of Bill's specials (Darlinghurst) and found all bland and nothing special, totally undeserving of praise.
        In Leura, try the bakery/restaurant in center of town.

        3 Replies
            1. re: idtoca

              Thanks, will put those on my list. Very much appreciated.