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The Rise of the Christchurch Foodies

Over the weekend my family and I had a mini holiday in Christchurch before sending my younger sister on her first OE. She is headed to the very gorgeous Jordan Winery in Healdsburg to work their 2014 Vintage. Lucky her!

Before we left, I’d undertaken a bit of research and asking about and come up with a wee hit list of foodie haunts to try. I certainly wasn’t disappointed. In between the rubble, road cones and abandoned buildings lay little surprises cooking up hearty, delicious fare to Cantabrians.

While it was heart breaking to drive through the CBD, which I remember so fondly and which now looks so drastically different, I could only feel immense admiration for those business owners and creative folk who have turned the city’s available spaces and buildings into bustling communities. One of my absolute favourites was C1 Espresso, this place was buzzing. I could have stayed there all day after breakfast trying to get water from a nifty sewing machine whilst trying to complete my cross word. My skills here need dramatci improvement! The quirky innovative menu at Harlequin Public House was even more delicious that it sounded on paper while the interior of The Tannery is one of the most beautiful sights around. My little almond cake was very much enjoyed below the intricate wrought iron lattice work. Hello Sunday is teeny wee café tucked away in an industrial area with the most incredible Eggs Benedict. Rumour has it they are the best in town and I certainly wouldn’t disagree going by mine!

Weekends away are the perfect opportunity to try new dishes, enjoy long lingering meals with family and friends and experience new surroundings. I think the best way to explore is by foot and for that reason I never leave home without my walking shoes. They are perfect bag accompaniment that allow you to burn off some energy and explore a new place. It's always surprising what you find on these adventures. No matter how many times you’ve visited a certain destination, there’s always something inspiring that’s yet to be discovered.

In between my breakfast of eggs benedict with salmon & spinach, a lovely moist almond cake for afternoon tea and a gorgeous dinner of confit duck with braised cabbage and caramelised leeks, I made sure to get out and about each day. Whether it was for my WOG (the run/walk which I'm sure should actually be WOJ!), a brisk 45-min power walk to the nearest supermarket to get the forgotten shampoo or an early morning Sumner adventure, nothing beats a bit of holiday activity. There is something quite special about a morning walk near the ocean. The sounds, the smell and the invigorating wind that livens all senses and sends goosebumps up your body. While I absolutely adore Marlborough and living in such a gorgeous region surrounded by vines and rivers, I miss seeing the ocean and it’s natural beauty each and every day. It really is something else. That’s what makes these adventures so special and a constant reminder to seek out those things you love. For me, that will mean more trips to the Marlborough Sounds and Kaikoura…as long as there are plenty of woolies and cups of tea to enjoy at the end of a Winter's day to warm me up!

As I left Christchurch today, thankful to be returning home to a warm stable home with cared for roads, I couldn't help but wonder the possibilities that will come for Christchurch. The resilience and determination of Cantabrians is truly amazing. If the city rebuilds itself to be half as amazing as its people, it will be one outstanding place. I’ll be back for seaside walks and eggs beny without a doubt.

PS. Next time you're heading away, don't forget your sneaks!

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