Venue Image
146 Ponsonby Road,
Ponsonby Central,
Ponsonby
Auckland,


(09) 360 0303

The ViewAuckland Review

StarStarStarStarStar
Review byBrett Atkinson2/08/2013

The Blue Breeze Inn, Ponsonby Central - Restaurant Review

Vibe

The Blue Breeze Inn’s menu steers towards authentic – and surprisingly robust – versions of regional Chinese food – but the décor channels a retro tiki-bar ambience with a lovingly kitsch Pacific theme. It’s a bustling informal place, with one of the best places to sit overlooking the fast-paced kitchen.

Service

Professional, but friendly and informal, from a team well versed in the menu and style of the restaurant. The wait staff’s also very approachable, and thankfully there’s no sign of the pretentiousness and aloof attitude that occasionally bubbles up at sister establishment MooChowChow. We did have frustrations in securing a table at The Blue Breeze Inn though, so we hope they’re working on improving and streamlining their approach to bookings.

Drinks List

A good wine list focused on New Zealand and Australia, but with well-chosen forays into France and top US wine states like California and Oregon. With food this hearty though, the Blue Breeze Inn’s rum cocktails made with freshly-squeezed fruit are also a good option. The country’s growing awareness of craft beer continues with a concise list including well-priced big bottles of interesting local brews like Dale’s zesty Belgian Pale Ale ($14) from Nelson. The restaurant’s Asian provenance also showcases an interesting range of teas from across the region.

Highlights

The steamed bun with Peking pork belly and pickled cucumber ($8). The gossamer-light and slightly sweet buns are crammed with a hefty slab of tender pork belly, and we’re pretty sure they’re Auckland’s best hand-held snacks. Dumplings stuffed with black tiger prawns and coriander (four for $10) are another great option, and tasty proof chef Che Barrington has been taking notes at the dumpling restaurants along Dominion Rd. There’s also a strong influence from regional Chinese cuisine on the menu, most notably the peppery, chilli tones of Sichuan food, and the grilled cumin-spiced lamb ($28) – served on the bone – is straight from China’s Muslim Xingxiang province near the western border with Central Asia and Pakistan.

The Bottom Line

There’s a growing awareness of regional Chinese cuisine in Auckland, and The Blue Breeze Inn is a stylish, hip and fun alternative to the more simple family-owned eateries now punctuating the city.

A Reason to Return

For The Blue Breeze Inn’s second take on the classic steamed bun - by way of David Chang at New York’s Momofuku restaurant in New York - and crammed with five-spiced crispy chicken, roasted peanuts and coriander ($8). We’re also really keen for another stab at the Hong Kong-style egg tart ($10) for dessert, an innovative spin on a Portuguese-influenced pastel de nata from Macau, and trimmed with delicate sections of mandarin and black sesame praline.

The Blue Breeze Inn has been reviewed by 6 users
 
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