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5 Nov 2014 • 2 Comments
Chameleon most certainly lives up to its name after a fresh shedding of skin. Out with the old and in with the new.
The complete makeover including stunning Italian marble, signifies contemporary elegance, while remaining very Chameleon with cone-shaped table lamps that apparently change their colour. I wanted to go sit in all the different dining areas but held myself back and plonked myself in the comfy booth seating.
My knowledgeable waiter, who's name I couldn't pronounce, informed me that Chameleon has moved away from fine dining to smaller plates with a focus on seasonal flavours. My dry mouth needed an Aussie Shiraz while I sipped and mulled over the menu. Head Chef Paul Limacher, who is the brother of Mark from Ortega Fish Shack, leads the charge and does a fantastic job.
We quickly devoured our complimentary amuse-bouche; a scrumptious scallop served with a pineapple salsa. It was a wee treat for us to get something we weren't expecting! This was followed by more scallops with cucumber, apple jelly, crème fraiche and smoked bacon. The stunning colours, taste, texture and plate presentation was sublime.
The lemon-crusted thyme grouper, served with a mouth-watering herby lemony taramasalata, was so fresh I thought it was going to wriggle off my plate. We also managed to squeeze in the duck, as this is something I don’t cook (and to be honest, am not good at) at home. It was pure indulgence served with artichokes, cauli bacon and truffle butter.
Our broccolini side (my ultimate fave veggie) was intriguing and delicious, covered with apple crumble, brown butter and topped with a '63 degree poached egg'. I had to ask about the science behind this. Did the chef tilt a 63 degree angle to cook this puppy? Nah. This is a special method of cooking the perfect egg, also known as “sous-vide”. Ms Foodie Traveller has learned something new. I was going to lick my plate clean but chose not to, remembering my table manners.
In the morning, Chameleon offers an amazing self-serve buffet breakfast, located in front of the open kitchen. Or you can pop in for lunch and choose a soup, salad or lunch plate, which includes a few repeats from the dinner menu.
Chameleon is often frequented by our own All Blacks and other celebrities. But no sign of Richie tonight. Sigh. I did spot him and Dan a month ago though in the foyer!
Ciao for now. Until we meet again. Chameleon that is, not Richie.
Written by guest blogger, Denise Menara.