Cafe Chat: The Monday Room marks a new beginning


The Monday Room's chirpy, tongue-in-cheek description of its new menu "brunch, dessert and everything in-between" kind of sums up the casual atmosphere too. The Madras St-Moorhouse Ave spot (ground floor of the Strategy building) has just re-opened. While the name is the same, inside has been freshened and reworked. It will also be open for longer – a 8am to 3pm shift covering breakfast to brunch, then a 5.30pm to late for dinner, dessert and the wine bar crowd (though dessert runs all day).
But by far the biggest change is the new menu from chef Shawn McGowan, who has ditched the yakitori. He's created a tight contemporary Euro lineup with a strong emphasis on quality seasonal and local products. McGowan is a former sous chef and head chef at Pegasus Bay Winery Restaurant and has spent the last couple of years working in Sydney, including a stint at Nomad, which brought a Middle Eastern touch to contemporary dishes that also comes through at Monday Room.
McGowan says he plans to change the menu frequently as seasonal ingredients change and so he can play around with ideas. The brunch menu is sophisticated with multiple flavours and a big step up from the plain old eggs bennie with options such as "ham hock croquettes with green pea and avocado mash, poached eggs, truffle mayo and watercress". There's a strong vegetarian focus among the five mains at launch. Joining the fish, beef and chicken dishes are two vege options of corn dumplings and kwark ravioli. McGowan says he plans the mains to be easy to share.
The wine list features a strong Waipara contingent and wines from the wider South Island. But there are French bubbles if you must, and five variations of the Bloody [Mary] Monday cocktail.

Tough tasty salmon

Aoraki Salmon's new cold smoked salmon jerky is one of the more interesting things to try at the Christchurch Food Show at Horncastle Arena from Friday. The annual show is at the arena for three days from Friday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm. It features the usual rabbit warren of speciality stalls, live entertainment from celebrity chefs such as Chelsea Winter and Ray McVinnie and plenty of tastings. The salmon jerky joins a number of seafood exhibitors including The Hairy Mussel Company, The Smokehouse and Southern Clams. The gate price to enter is $23 for adults and $15 for under 12s. See for more details.

Bar for Bishopdale

Bishopdale will be welcoming a new eatery to replace the old Little Italy/Farrington Tavern. Bishop Brothers Public House is named after the Bishop brothers who gave their names to the suburb. Described as "50s retro rustic cool", the gastro tavern is themed around Bishopdale's famous orchards and is pegged to open on April 14. Owner Mark Pearce says it's all about great food and drink for the neighbourhood spot. There isn't much on offer in the wider area. Chef Kathryn Ahu has put together a hearty rustic menu and new takes on the classics. There's a courtyard to enjoy a glass of wine or craft beer, a cocktail, or a private function. The Bishop Brothers Public House will be open weekdays 9am-late, and weekends from 8am-late. Find it at 119 Farrington Ave.

Nature's big blow

The people behind the popular Addington Coffee Co-op are still hoping its possible to crank up their farming operation at Little River after it was devastated by floods. But plans at the moment are still focused on getting the property into shape first. The farm was bought in 2012 with the idea of it being a rural escape from the bustle of the city for staff and as a supplier of produce for the cafe's kitchen. The philosophy and hopes remain strong, but Addington Co-op general manager Adrian Palmer says apart from some spray-free garlic about to arrive from the property, it's in a holding pattern. At one stage they were getting many eggs from the property (they use many dozens a week) but these now come from another local free-range supplier.

- Stuff


Love Local. Love NZ Salmon.

Aoraki Salmon is delighted to support the Love NZ Salmon campaign which aims to educate consumers on the differences between locally farmed King salmon, and the imported Atlantic salmon products emerging in retail and food service settings.


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New Zealand’s salmon farming industry has been recognised amongst the world’s most sustainable seafood producers by the globally respected Seafood Watch.


Latest news at Aoraki Salmon Hatchery

Following on from our successful out-of-season smolt, we have now increased the size of our brood stock and their fertility. Our three year old females are now in the 8 – 10kg range and are producing 6,000 – 7,000 eggs per fish.