Gourmet Picnic, Tourism New Zealand
Posted: 17 January 2017
It’s easy to get lost in New Zealand’s sensational scenery – both islands are blessed with mesmerising lakes, rugged coastlines and dramatic mountains. However, the inspiring landscapes are just part of your ‘NZ’ experience. Boasting an impressive array of leisure and adventure activities, New Zealand also produces delicious, innovative cuisine featuring fresh seasonal fare, world-class wines, world-renowned Mānuka Honey, a wealth of orchard fruits, craft beers, artisan breads, cheeses and scrumptious preserves. Whilst the cities are the domain of coffee-lovers and fusion fare, the vibrant countryside champions a love for farm-to-fork dining, boutique vineyards with open cellar doors, pick-your-own fruit orchards and gourmet trails.
By visiting unique wineries, cycling the vineyards, picking your own fruit and enjoying picnics, you can truly appreciate the landscape - tasting the earthy flavours of the famous Pinot Noirs or zesty Sauvignon Blanc wines - plus appreciate the art and passion behind these, often small, family-owned-and-run, enterprises. With vineyards stretching virtually the entire length of the country and self-driving so popular, visiting rustic barns, dining in vineyard restaurants and stopping for an estate tour, or Farmer’s Market, is simple to incorporate into any New Zealand journey.
With such an expansive coastline to explore too, the incredible seascape views and fresh seafood are never far away! New Zealand’s maritime climate, along with long hours of sunshine, means that delicious fresh seafood and fishing charters are a major draw for tourists. From scallops in the Coromandel, crayfish in Kaikoura and Green-lipped Mussels in Marlborough, to Whitebait patties along the West Coast, salmon farms in Canterbury and Bluff Oysters in the far south, there is an abundance of fruits of the sea to enjoy, quite in addition to the world-renowned lamb, beef, pork, ostrich and venison meat.
From the tip of North Island to the southern coast of South Island, we have compiled a few inspiring suggestions, to whet your appetite and tantalise your tastebuds.
Here are just a few of our favourite foodie experiences to enjoy, with something to suit every palate:
1) Dine at The Sugar Club at the top of Auckland’s Sky Tower to enjoy fine cuisine and the best city view
2) Catch-and-cook your own dish-of-the-day by river fishing in Taupo, or a sea fishing charter in Bay of Islands
3) Venture to Waiheke Island ‘the island of wine’ and visit a plethora of boutique wineries plus olive groves
4) Take a gourmet trail in Hawke’s Bay and visit the famous Arataki Honey Visitor Centre
5) Try the sparkling wine, ‘Mirumiru’, in Marlborough and visit the sunny town of Blenheim
6) Tour and taste craft beers and micro-breweries in Wellington, Nelson or Christchurch
7) Sample a traditional Māori hāngī where food is cooked by hot stones in the earth
8) Taste the local dairy delights of Puhoi, Kapita or Whitestone cheeses
9) Pick your own stone fruit and berries in Nelson or Wanaka during December to June
10) Discover the Marlborough region by helicopter and land at the iconic Cloudy Bay for an exclusive wine tasting
11) Book at table at Pescatore restaurant within The George Hotel, Christchurch, for innovative dishes
12) Try a Fergburger in Queenstown, accompanied by a Lemon and Paeroa soft drink
In addition to the above, it’s certainly worth trying some of the local favourites, such as fish and chips, pavlova, pineapple lumps, beetroot on burgers, kiwi preserve, Kumara (sweet potato), Tim Tam biscuits and Hokey Pokey ice-cream!
To book your perfect journey to New Zealand please call 01244 897 505. Alternatively, for further inspiration, please visit our Elegant Journeys pages online.