We wanted to go out for lunch on our last day in New Zealand. We decided on a seafood restaurant because people kept raving to us about blue cod. Ok, so it was Eric, Eric raved about blue cod.
So I googled seafood restaurants in Christchurch, chose one with a nice looking menu and picked a random time that we might rock up after driving from Arthur’s Pass.
Turns out this restaurant wasn’t exact in Christchurch. It was on the outskirts of Christchurch. And when you have no internet and the GPS in the car won’t work, you have to memorise where this restaurant might be and hope like hell you’re driving in the right direction.
We were sandwiched between semi-trailers the entire way, slowing us down and hiding all road signs, but we finally found ourselves approaching the village. As we rounded the corner, the whole port was spread out in front of us. Rail lines, container ships, cranes, semi-trailers loaded with logs. Rocks, noise, dust.
The trucks surrounding us peeled off down a dirt road in behind a ramshackle structure overlooking all the port activity. The building looked as though any minute a stiff breeze would knock it into the ocean. Worn boards held it together, there were no windows and nothing adorned it. It sat by itself on the side of the road – no shops, cafes, nothing. And no sign of human activity anywhere.
There was a hand written sign out the front stating ‘Chef wanted’.
‘That’s our restaurant,’ I said to Don.
We kept driving right past that old building and around the block, looking at other options. But there wasn’t much else, and we’d booked, so we thought what the hell.
As we walked up the street we could finally see the back part of the restaurant, and it was packed. People laughing, drinking, eating. The food smells as we entered were incredible. We were given the best table and champagne was brought immediately. If we hadn’t had our hearts set on blue cod we would have had difficulty choosing from the amazing menu. And when our lunches arrived, oh my God, that blue cod was indeed delicious. The potatoes were golden, the herb butter sauce light and tasty, the salad fresh.
It had turned out to the perfect choice of restaurant.
I can’t even imagine what it’ll be like when they find a chef.