Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Gastronomical

My favourite restaurant - where I just dined recently as a birthday treat - placed as runner up in the "Casual Dining, Metropolitan" category of the Cuisine Restaurant of the Year Awards.

Plato opened in 2003, but it took us a year or so before we discovered it. We knew it was there, and we had noted the name, but didn't realise it was a restaurant. It's located next to a busy road, in amongst wharves and warehouses, next to the harbour, almost right under an overpass and overhead walkways.


We used to drive past it and wonder what it was, joking that it might be some sort of private club for retired philosophers, and perhaps a dodgy one at that. The building is a strangely utilitarian one; it used to be a hostel for seamen.

And then one day the chef was interviewed on Kim Hill's Saturday morning radio show. Kim was full of praise for the meal she had there on a visit to Dunedin, and it was only a matter of time before we checked it out.

Judges praised Plato for its "generous, honest and simple food", saying local seafood was a particular strength. Here's the item from our local newspaper.

My favourite dish is their muttonbird special; my favourite dessert the liquorice and five spice ice cream with rhubarb compote and cherry and almond florentine.

The ambience is great - including a quirky collection of ornamental salt and pepper shakers.

And no snooty staff here, genuine friendly and helpful.

Well done Plato!

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