Of course, one of the biggest things in our foodie household is where we’re going to eat while on holiday! We follow the breakfast at home, lunch and dinner out philosophy when we’re on vacation, finding a supermarket near our accommodation and stocking up on arrival so that we know that we can start our day healthy even if it doesn’t stay that way.
We arrived late and our eating pattern was a little bit muddled. We got CJ sushi at the Auckland Domestic Airport terminal for an early lunch and that combined with a small snack on the plane was enough for him. During his afternoon nap, I went grocery shopping and we snarfed down a late lunch when I got back to the holiday park.
That evening, we walked down the road to Joe’s Garage, a restaurant with an industrial/American diner feel. Despite the theme we felt that the menu had a wide range of options and they were more than happy to swap out the kids’ menu chips for the healthier option of mushrooms. They looked like they had some delicious dessert options on their menu but we knew that CJ’s hyperactive behaviour (thank goodness he’s cute) was indicating that we were on borrowed time so it was back to the cabin for us. We’re definitely keen to return for a full meal in future though!
Check out my full review for Joe’s Garage here.
On Saturday morning we were up fairly early to check out the Re:Start container mall before the crowds got too heavy (it was also registration day for the Christchurch marathon in the CBD). We picked up some small snackable items but we were interested to see what a wide range of food truck style places have also made Re:Start their home. With more time up our sleeves we would return for a lunch or evening meal and trial some of those places out.
After visiting our family, we headed to The Tannery Shopping Precinct for lunch. The shop conversion has been done absolutely beautifully but we didn’t find a lot there for small kids. We ended up with a bacon & egg brioche from the deli and CJ devoured it but I would probably look to return in future without our little buddy and try one of the other eateries.
That evening, we visited The Running Bull – a little bit of a drive from our Redwood home base, but seemed like a family friendly “pub grub” type place. We weren’t mistaken. The food was definitely pub as opposed to gastro-pub and it did make us laugh that they have quite clearly designated part of the bar as the “kid zone” where they seat all the families. Despite not being the best meal that we had while we were down there, it was a very relaxing experience knowing that we wouldn’t have other diners giving us the side eye if CJ was burbling away.
Read my full review of The Running Bull here.
After swinging by New Brighton we met up with our relatives at Castle Rock Cafe. If you are looking for hearty brunch-style food, this is the place. Castle Rock does set themselves up as a family-friendly destination with toys, books, colouring, little vintage pedal cars and three different styles of high chairs! The only downside for me was that the doors were a little too easy for a certain fifteen month old to manoeuvre and the cafe and the outdoor area are not fenced – definitely a great choice with non-mobile infants and older kids with a little more street sense.
Read my full review of Castle Rock here.
CJ had less day sleep than usual on Sunday, not napping until after we got back from our Gondola adventure, and the adults were feeling a little weary too. We decided to get take-out from Thai Temple, the Thai restaurant that we had seen on our walk from Joe’s Garage a couple of nights previously. While CJ does like his spicy food, we organised him a “breakfast for dinner” meal and made a phone order just before putting down the toddler and enjoying a night in. The food was piping hot when Papa M collected it and was definitely comparable to our favourite local places.
Read my full review of Thai Temple here.
We flew home in the morning and our meals were back to usual, with a slightly heftier tilt towards fruit and vegetables which we never seem to eat as much of while we are away. Are you guys the same?
I feel like we were really lucky with our restaurant selections this time round. With the exception of The Tannery, it was quite stress-free and easy to find places with good food and a great family atmosphere. Have I missed out on any of your Christchurch favs?