With the recent announcement of the 2019 Beef and Lamb Excellence Award holders, I decided to get out amongst the action on announcement day and see what all the fuss was about. My choice was to head out of the city to Coatesville, just north of Auckland and visit The Black Cottage Café. Nestled in the countryside, this delightful café was bustling with lunch time visitors.Read More
It could be argued that beef and lamb is quintessentially Kiwi. Deep rooted farming communities, a perfect temperate climate producing world-renowned meat has generated an export industry that is vital to this country’s economy. The subject of ‘beef and lamb’ is intrinsically linked to our national identity.
Chefs are naturally drawn to cooking with the finest produce, so having world-class beef and lamb readily available to them, it’s going to come as no surprise that these two iconic proteins have become staples on restaurant menus up and down the country.Read More
Delve off the beaten track on your travels around New Zealand and you’ll come across some hidden culinary gems tucked away in unknown pockets. Here are a few that you need to put on your bucket list:Read More
We all have a personal preference of how we like our steak cooked, but which cut of beef produces the perfect steak?Read More
Following some outstanding Beef and Lamb Ambassador Series Dinners in 2018, it was the turn of Harry Williams, head chef at Alpha Street Kitchen in Cambridge. He was tasked with the job of wowing his adoring customers with a beef and lamb showcase dinner and boy did he deliver.
Situated in the heart of Cambridge, Alpha Street Kitchen is a modern bistro, housed in the historic National Hotel building opposite the famous clock tower. Harry and owner Fiona Massey took over the restaurant three and half years ago and set out with a vision to create one of Waikato’s finest eating experiences. Based on what was served up at the Series Dinner, they must be pretty close to achieving that.Read More
With the weather warming up and the days drawing out we begin to come out of our winter hibernation. Labour weekend has a habit of sneaking up on us and we love to dash away for a relaxing break, hopeful of some sunshine and a promise that summer is on its way. Whether you head away or choose a staycation at home a long weekend is a great time to treat yourself to a sumptuous dinner out and we have a few suggestions which we think could hit the spot and introduce you to some delicious spring lamb.Read More
You may have recently seen our Instagram account was taken over by Platinum Ambassador Chef, Scott Kennedy as he travelled and dined his way through the U.S.A.
Scott is owner and head chef at Nero Restaurant in Palmerston North and loves to search the globe for inspiration for his menus. He and wife Yvette planned their travel around dining out at some of the U.S.A’s top restaurants, including Gallagher’s Steakhouse and The Musket Room in New York City, and Atelier Crenn in San Francisco.Read More
You may be forgiven for thinking that August would be a rather sleepy time for restaurants with customers hunkering down at home in front of the fire with a bowl of soup instead of dining out! Well think again – as we approach August it is definitely heating up in some restaurant kitchens around New Zealand. If you’re a foodie, then there are some culinary events you will want to add to your calendar with Auckland’s Restaurant Month kicking off on the 1st August and Wellington on a Plate beginning on the 10th.
We’ve scrolled through the long list of delicious festival dishes and amazing events featuring local producers and international guest chefs and are happy to share our pick of the bunch for you!Read More
It was the final weekend of the Hawke’s Bay Winter F.A.W.C! Series as we headed to Napier to attend one of the sold-out events hosted by Beef and Lamb Ambassador Chef, Damon McGinniss. Damon is Executive Chef at the Art Deco Masonic Hotel and was named a Beef + Lamb Ambassador Chef for 2018 based on his outstanding beef and lamb dishes at Emporium Bar & Eatery. We were warmly greeted by staff at The Masonic and spending time at this iconic Art Deco Hotel in the centre of Napier was such an indulgent experience - the hotel is embellished with gorgeous furnishings and décor which enhances the experience and brings the art deco era to life for their guests.
Damon has had a long association with Beef + Lamb New Zealand throughout his career, and 2018 was the third time he has been named an Ambassador Chef. With his skill and knowledge combined, his trademark is working with humble cuts of beef and lamb elevating them to high end and beautifully executed dishes.Read More
Chefs love to combine different flavours from around the world to create a unique and distinct dish which sets them aside from their peers. New Zealand-grown beef and lamb is the perfect vehicle to take on the myriad of international flavours which chefs love to use now to create fusion cuisine. We think these dishes are a great winter dining option and here’s our top picks for some warming winter beef and lamb dishes with a twist.Read More
There is nothing better than a mid-winter get away where the fire is roaring, the food is warm and comforting and the scenery is snowy and picturesque. We have some amazing suggestions for a weekend away where all these things come together to create a memorable winter escape. You may not have heard of some of these destinations, but we know first-hand that each one has an award-winning chef who will be serving some hearty, warming winter beef and lamb dishes.Read More
The highlight of National Lamb Week, was of course, National Lamb Day on May 24th and in the upmarket suburb of Parnell, Auckland there was a lot of lamb prepping going on! Our Ambassador Chef Kate Fay of Cibo Parnell, had been planning and prepping for her Ambassador Series dinner which just happened to fall on National Lamb Day, so we knew we were in for a wonderful journey celebrating New Zealand lamb.Read More
Thursday 24 May is National Lamb Day which celebrates one of the most significant milestones in New Zealand’s sheep meat history, marking the day the first shipment of lamb arrived in London, 98 days after leaving Port Chalmers. As a nation we love to celebrate New Zealand’s great achievements, so we encourage you to get out and enjoy lamb whichever way you can on National Lamb Day.
If dining out is your way to celebrate, then we have taken the guess work out of finding an award-winning lamb dish for you to try on National Lamb Day. We begin our lamb journey at the bottom of the South Island where the first shipment left New Zealand all those years ago and take you right up to tropical Northland. So, wherever you will be on National Lamb Day we have 24 suggestions for you to celebrate on 24 May.Read More
Nelson based Ambassador Chef, Alistair Forster loves to use offal cuts when creating menus to introduce customers to something a little different that they would not be able to create at home. He also likes to educate and train his staff on using different cuts such as sweetbreads to use as an exciting element on the menu and not something chefs should shy away from. Alistair says preparation is key when using sweetbreads to get the best from them. He firstly rinses them in a bowl under cold water for about 10 minutes, then puts them into a pan of fresh water and heats to about 80° C. They are then removed from the heat and left to cool until warm. He then peels the membranes off each sweetbread, which he says is a long process but is a crucial step in the preparation, and places them in a bath of ice, pats them dry and vac pacs them. They are then ready to serve and Alistair says pan-frying them with some butter and golden syrup to finish before serving creates a delicious and exciting dish component ready for plating.
Ambassador Chef, Freddie Ponder from Tables Restaurant in New Plymouth loves cooking with New Zealand lamb. Not only is it a versatile and flavoursome product to work with, Freddie uses is raised on the wholesome green pastures down the road from his restaurant which underpins the paddock-to-plate philosophy which is so important to chefs.
A popular lamb cut he loves to have on his menu is lamb belly. Not only is it a cost-effective menu item, but it has a wonderful robust flavour and texture which comes from a long slow braise which renders the fat and enhances the flavour.Read More
What better way to celebrate National Lamb Day than with a lamb sausage roll! Ambassador Chef Kate Fay originally created her version of this Kiwi classic dish for the 20th anniversary of Cibo Restaurant in Parnell, where she is executive chef, putting a modern twist on a classic birthday party treat. It fast became one of her trade mark iconic dishes and she will be serving it on her menu for her upcoming Ambassador Series dinner for National Lamb Day on 24 May.
What makes this dish just that little bit extra special is using lamb neck as the filling. Kate says using lamb neck, a secondary cut which requires long slow cooking, adds a rich depth of flavour and an alternative texture to the traditional filling of a sausage roll. Lamb neck is a wonderful cheaper cut ideal to use on menu applications where a braised meat is required. Braising lamb neck not only brings out the flavour but creates a very moist and textural end result. With the increased popularity of this secondary cut, Kate says they are now available for chefs, filleted and ready for the braising pot!Read More
Damon is head chef at the Emporium Eatery and Bar in Napier and on National Lamb Day he will be serving up twelve-hour braised lamb shoulder served on smoked potato, with sweet garlic and horseradish butter. He says this dish is sublime and a firm favourite on his menu. So, if you're in Napier on National Lamb Day we recommend a visit to Emporium Bar & Eatery or you could try out Damon's special recipe below. emporiumbar.co.nzRead More
Lamb loin or back strap is a wonderful lean and meaty cut of lamb which is very tender. It adorns many restaurant menus but can also be easily prepared at home for any special occasion. Beef and Lamb Ambassador Chef Harry Williams of Alpha Street Kitchen and Bar in Cambridge, recently demonstrated this to an audience of 24 eager home cooks at the Great New Zealand Foodshow in Hamilton. He explained just how easy it was to get the best out of this fabulous cut. With no fat cap to keep the meat moist during cooking, Harry says a quick pan fry followed by resting the meat well, ensures a perfectly cooked and tender result.Read More
Our mum’s hold such a special place in our hearts and many of us will have fond memories of the wonderful meals which our mum’s served up and the endless hours they spent in the kitchen. So why not thank your mum this Mother’s Day and treat her to a day out of the kitchen? We’ve listed a few of our favourite spots which we think your mum would love to visit, this Mother’s Day. We know all these restaurants are guaranteed to serve up some great beef and lamb meals but they also have that little bit of extra special magic especially for mum.Read More