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By Heather• 21 Oct 2015
“Flavour on the plate, rather than dramatics”
The décor and ambience is the same as we know and love, but to keep things fresh Glen is subtly changing the food to a little more NZ contemporary rather than just Spanish and Mediterranean, delivered with modern cooking techniques and a lighter touch (less butter and oil). "Flavour on the plate, rather than dramatics” is how Glen sees it.
FUN FACT ONE: Glen was on a chair at his grandmothers side, helping swirl gravy pans at age 5.
They like to use quality local suppliers, as well as growing a lot of their own fruits and greenery, either on the roof of Zibibbo or at Adam Newell's (founder and partner) farm in the Wairarapa.
FUN FACT TWO: Apparently truly fresh tarragon gives you a slightly numb mouth (however sellers may not appreciate you sucking on their tarragon to check!).
I considerately took along three others so we could sample widely, and here's some of the feedback:
FUN FACT THREE: Those famed wooden tapas platters came from the ceiling 15 years ago when they cut a hole to install their pizza oven.
We managed to drink them out of Hancock brown ale (the chip fiend’s fault), enjoyed the Nga Waka chardonnay, and got hooked on the Loveblock gewürztraminer. There's something for everyone on the Zibby's drink list.
With a menu ranging from pizza to finer dishes, prix fixe (pre-show), a separate vegetarian menu, ever-changing Sunday roasts and Friday lunch burgers (keep your eye on their Facebook page), tapas in the bar, and special occasion menus, there’s plenty of ways to enjoy Zibibbo week after week.
So what next for Glen and Zibby’s? Keep your eyes peeled for the sale of their own designed wood ovens soon, extension of the rooftop garden, conversion of some bar space to another private dining room, and possibly a sister venture next year.
We watch with interest.