First of all, you would not really expect fine dining at The Blue Pub – although you can get it there.
First you think of big portions of pub food to fill your growling stomach after a day on the slopes or after a big walk in the forest. And you also get this.
They have different menus for the different needs of their customers.
My last test was from the Pub Grub menu after a day without breakfast, so I ordered the mighty Blue Burger. I mean, see yourself, the photo says it all. But more: The mince patty was huge and homemade, and lightly fell apart because it did not contain all this stuff that normally glues a patty together. And the wedges with bacon, cheese, sour cream and sweet chilli sauce filled my husband’s stomach until the week after ;-)))
Other popular pub meals are fettuccine with smoked chicken in a cream sauce, lasagne, pizza, nachos, steak burger, fish’n’chips, filled pita pockets and a curry of the day – so a wild international mix.
The A la Carte menu contains such delicacies as squid, salmon paté, a Mediterranean Platter, lamb shanks, filo parcels, roasts, steaks, venison, fresh fish of the day, and a big selection of mouth-watering desserts, using fresh local ingredients. In total, a nice selection with something for everyone. But although Methven is somehow off the beaten path – especially the A la carte food is not really cheap…
Update April 2011
The Blue Pub has suffered damage in the 7.1 earthquake on 4 September 2010. Renovations are under way. The bar operates as normal, the restaurant is closed at its original site - but food operations have shifted next door to Samuels Bar. So you can still go there for lunch or dinner and get your favourite bites. Bar snacks are served at the main bar.
Just opposite the Blue Pub is the Brown Pub, also known as the Canterbury Hotel. Pop in and you feel like in the good old days. The Brown Pub is a true Kiwi country pub where you meet the locals.
Having had a drink at the bar of the Blue Pub which seemed rather deserted on one of those days between the busy seasons, we went over to finally check out the Brown Pub. And what a difference! The bar was buzzing with life. Obviously all but one or two of the local farm people were hanging out there. It was loud and crowded, as the bar had shrunk in size due to extensive earthquake damage to the building in the 7.1 earthquake that had rattled the area on 4 September 2010. (The 22 February 2011 earthquake that destroyed Christchurch's CBD did not cause any further damage out there in the west.)
Renovations are currently (April 2011) going on to strengthen the Main Bar area with steel beams. This, however, is no reason for the owners to stop selling drinks. This is done from the Fireside Bar. Also the restaurant is fully operational. Also the garden bar was/is running - however, now in the cold season surely not a favourite spot ;-))
As soon as we had our drinks in hand, a nice local guy started a conversation, just I remembered it from my first NZ holiday in 1991. When you go out in Christchurch, this does not happen very often, so this was a delightful change.
Later on we had dinner in the restaurant which mainly offers pub grub but also some more sophisticated dishes. Starters are cheaper than in comparable places, also the famous "Seafood Basket" which is the restaurant version of fish'n'chips.
The accommodation upstairs remains closed until the renovations are done. They hope to have beds available again in May 2011, so not very long to go - and promising good business as the ski season is looming.
The original hotel was built in 1883. It burnt down in 1922 and was rebuilt on the same site.
On the pub's website they write: "It is a pub where friendships are formed and consolidated over the odd drop of beer (or twenty!)."
That's surely how we see it as well.
This is really a nicely renovated place, opposite The Blue Pub, at the main square of the township. They offer home-baking, all-day breakfasts and lunch-style meals, and also takeaway meals, prices ranging from $ 5.50 for a raisin toast with butter and jam to $ 15.50 for a porterhouse steak.
We only had coffees (very nice!) and cakes there, so cannot judge the real meals.
Open from 7.30am till late (whatever this means – I have been there only in the afternoon)
Update April 2011
As far as we could see on our last visit to Methven, Café 131 has been red-stickered after the 4 September 2010 earthquake and is closed until further notice.
the oldest Hotel in the area, timber building, warm and snug inside. friendly Country Patrons and it is absolutly speck and span..they have rooms to rent too
Favorite Dish: I had a beer and eggsandwich, hart to get vegetarian food in the land of plenty and meat..people look at you a bit irritated, that question in their face..whats wrong with 'you'
but the sandwich was okay I could even have a salad.