Tuesday, July 14, 2015

50 Years

I have now entered the second half of my life. Let me stress that I am not yet middle-aged, as middle age always begins at least 5 years from where you are now.

To mark the occasion, I went and spoke to Jacob Brown of The Larder to arrange a birthday dinner. Actually, I did this months ago, because these things take time and planning. We’d had a discussion about menu options early in June, and finalised wine choices and the menu last Monday. All we had to do from then on was wait for people to turn up. Which they did. (Phew!)

Jason, Elissa and Nellie had come over from Australia as well. They’ve been touring round the South Island, taking in some skiing on the Porters ski area near Christchurch. They had a choppy crossing on the Interislander on Thursday, and since then have seen the sights of Wellington. The weather wasn’t very conducive to outdoor pursuits on Friday, so after a hearty breakfast at Bach CafĂ© we headed to the Weta Workshops tour, Te Papa, the Wellington Chocolate Factory and Moore Wilson’s. On Saturday the sun came out so we headed up to Zealandia where we tracked down the ever-elusive saddleback, before returning for an early evening start at The Larder.

First was a pea and pancetta soup amuse-bouche, followed by Nicola’s favourite, goat’s cheese soufflĂ©. We had groper with seared scallops and parsnip puree (yum!), and slow-cooked lamb shoulder. The pudding was a chocolate mousse cake with sour cherry sorbet, candied beetroot and hazelnut meringue. Here it is in full:

Can you read this?

Groper with seared scallops

Lamb shoulder. I'd tucked in before I realised I'd better get a snap!

Chocolate mousse cake

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