Fat Dog: I Would Have Loved to Have Dinner there but...
I tried hard during more than a week at the Mountainbike World Championships in August 2006 - but as we never knew when we would finish working we could not make a reservation, and so we missed out.
The place was highly recommended by locals, and obviously is the place to go in Rotorua. The food MUST be delicious. I also checked the internet restaurant websites, and nearly everybody was delighted and rated it highly. So I think it is well worth to be mentioned although I did not succeed to have dinner there.
Pig and Whistle Historic Pub: Rustic Food, Sky Sport and Live Music
This is one of the places locals recommend. It is a bar/restaurant with live entertainment in a classic historic building from 1940, and as far as I could see it was always crammed with people.
The food is hearty and features such typical dishes like garlic bread, seafood chowder, salads, all kinds of burgers, panini, chicken wings, fish'n'chips, sausages, pizza, steak sandwich and filling desserts. Snacks include nachos, wedges, chips etc. I have not tried the famous Pig Tail Fries ;-)
Everything is served with the big games from the three Sky Sport channels. Also in the garden bar you will find a big screen, so you will not miss the important things of life ;-)
On the entertainment side Pig and Whistle has live bands every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, and a solo guitarist on Wednesday and Sunday night.
A remarkable note:
CHILDREN under 18 years are not admitted after 5pm on Friday and Saturday!
Weilin's Noodle House: Real Chinese food.
I can't believe that fat dog dump has three reviews and Weilin's has none.
Weilin's is a northern Chinese noodle house. Its decor is more government school canteen than classy restaurant, but nevermind, its tops. The people running the place are really nice and the food.......is brilliant. Its around the corner from Fat Dog on Tutanekai street.
Noodle soups, northern chinese dumplings and buns, dry noodle and rice dishes, ALL PREPARED WITH NO MSG! I have tried maybe 7 dishes off their menu, including 4 different soups, And they are all really tasty.
Most importantly, Weilin's is cheap and the food is plentyful. You can eat, and eat well for $10-13 or spend more on more fancy stuff. Two of my favourite soups cost $9.99 for small size (which is big enough) and $10.99 for a large (which is a gut filler).
Cant say enough about this place, backpackers go forth.
Favorite Dish: Chilli Beef soup with Veges.
Available in mild/ med hot / hot. The Mild is pretty spicy, My partner had a hard time with mild.
I went for hot. If you like hot, you will like this.
Not Thai hot but getting there. I leave after a big bowl, with a full warm belly, Bright red lips and a clear nose. Absoultly brilliant.
Fat Dog Cafe: Huge Portions
If you find yourself out and about in Rotorua, check out the Fat Dog Cafe. A small hodge podge kind of place, with funky tables, chairs and couches. Choose your dining pleasure from the menu board, and get ready for a huge plate to arrive. A yummy variety of sandwiches, lasagnas, salads and desserts.
Favorite Dish: I had a chicken sandwich, and my friend had the veggie sandwich. We were both pleased with our choices.
Lady Jane's Ice Cream Parlour: Lots of flavors to choose from
We stopped by Lady Janes but didn't get anything. They had lots of flavors to choose from and it looked really good.
They were closed many times when we walked by or else we would've definitely tried it.
Pig & Whistle: Stop by for a drink and a sandwich
The Pig & Whistle is an interesting bar/restaurant housed in the former police station. It always seemed busy and had live bands some nights. We ate there one night and the food was pretty good.
Favorite Dish: The food was typical pub menu. I had a chicken sandwich and the fries that came with it were tastey.
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Aorangi Peak: Stunning views from Aorangi Peak
Aorangi Peak is perched on the side of Rotoruas Mount Ngonotaha, and at 2,000 feet above sea level it gives you enjoy fantastic views over the city, the lake and beyond.
An up-market restaurant offering an a la carte menu, Aorangi Peak is ideal for a special evening during your stay. Four of us enjoyed an evening here, watching the sky fade and the city light up as darkness fell. Superb service combined with one of those menus that make it hard to know what to choose because you are so spoilt for choice. We actually drove up to the restaurant in advance to check it out and to see if they had a table available. They were kind enough to print out a personalised menu for us to take away and ponder over.
Favorite Dish: The Roast Five-Spice Duck Breast ($37 NZD) was really good. The presentation generally was a little overly 'artistic' for my taste, but the quality of the food was brilliant. Dads Cheese Board ($22.50 NZD) was big enough to feed a small army, and the Baileys and Chocolate Fondue ($25.00 NZD for 2 people to share - or 1 to gorge themselves on) with fresh fruit was probably the best dessert I've ever chosen!
- Food and Dining
Te Wairoa Tearooms and Cafe: Colonial style cafe
Te Wairoa Tearooms is part of the Buried Village attraction, but you don't have to visit the Buried Village in order to enjoy them.
The building is a beautiful old colonial style place, and the cafe area opens onto a nice terrace and garden area ~ a really lovely setting.
Favorite Dish: The menu is mainly light meals, snacks, cakes and coffees.The lemon tart was scrummy, and the coffee is superb.
- Food and Dining
- Historical Travel
Lovely India Tandoori Restaurant: Fancy an Curry?
Sometimes, only an Indian will do, and after an evening lazing in the hot waters of the Polynesian Spa, a nice chicken Korma was just what I needed!
The town was busy, but Lovely India have great staff who managed to squeeze us into an already packed restaurant and serve us promptly.
My only criticism: grated cheese does not belong on a chicken korma, and neither does a glace cherry!
- Food and Dining
Chambers Cafe and Bar: A bygone era!
Chambers is a really nice cafe/bar where we enjoyed coffee one morning (and the coffee was excellent!). On the walls are pictures of black and white movie stars, including my favourites, Laurel and Hardey. On the tables are old gramophone record covers for old jazz and blues artists, and there is even an antique movie projector dating from the early 20th century which the girl behind the bar (from Northern England) told us the owner had found in Auckland.
Favorite Dish: A huge frothy bowl of soy latte ~ yum!
- Food and Dining
Freos: Great little pavement cafe
Freos is a great little pavement cafe and bar, serving a variety of meals including steaks, pasta and light snacks. The cafe is licenced or you can if you prefer BYO (Bring Your Own).
We enjoyed a lazy lunchtime drink in the sun and indulged in a little people watching.
Favorite Dish: A cold Pimms and a bowl of hot chips set me up a treat!
Zambique: Get your Just Desserts!
Sarah and I were in the mood for a little dessert on her birthday, so we headed down to Rotorua's famous Tutanekai Street, which is the home to many great little cafes and restaurants.
The one we chose to stop in was Zambique, which looked to have quite an interesting menu, but the trio of ice creams and the other desserts got us going!
The presentation of these desserts were fabulous, with some whisked caramel topping that was delicious!
Tamaki Maori Village: Have a Maori Feast!
For those of you who like to take a taste of another culture, head on down to the Maori Village just outside of Rotorua. I was actually shocked that the Maoris eat almost identically to the American Pilgrims! We had roasted chicken, carrots, potatoes, sweet potato, cranberry, and finished off by a nice bread pudding with custard.
I enjoyed it, although i can not tell you if it really was a traditional meal.
Afterward, they do present you with how it would traditionally be prepared in an underground oven.
- Arts and Culture
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The Pig & Whistle: Pub Food
The Pig & Whistle is an English style pub that offers their own beer (Swine Lager and Snout Dark Ale) along with other New Zealand and International beers.
They had a "garden bar" type area that was covered in winter and furnished with patio heaters.
There is a DJ or a band playing here on Friday and Saturday nights
Favorite Dish: The menu was typical of pub style but had plenty of variety and was reasonably priced. The portions were all very large.
CICCIO ITALIAN CAFE: GREAT ITALIAN FOOD
tHIS PLACE WAS SO GREAT THE FOOD IS CHEAP, THE SERVICE WAS CASUAL BUT GOOD, THE CAKES..OHH MY GOD THE ARE SO YUMM
Favorite Dish: Poll Azzurro would be my favourite it's a chicken breast in a creamy sauce the contains blue cheese and spinach...just delicious...
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