SKYCITY Grand Hotel,
90 Federal Street,
(09) 363 7067
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The Grill by Sean Connolly
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My 2nd time at the Grill and although I still think the food is amazing and with rather huge portions the service on this occasion was very poor. I think our waiter was relatively new and got flustered at his first wine mixing error so went on to making mistake after mistake as well as missing taking my order entirely. And the butter came out after the bread had already been consumed. There were only 8 of us in our group.
Steak tartare was made tableside for two of our group which was interesting to watch and hear.
Some friends shared the smoked free-range pork spare ribs. They arrived covered in a glass dome, which was swirling with smoke, and was dramatically lifted to reveal a glistening pile of dark, short. I tried the suckling pig fritter with percorino, apple and cabbage slaw.
4 friends shared 2 lots of the ‘Studies of beef’ and couldn’t get through it much like my friend that arrived on a bare chopping block rewarded me in every way a good steak should - tasty, tender, succulent and oozing meat juices.
The slow roasted Lamb shoulder with raspberry vinegar and star anise gravy is absolutely delectable. With sides of asparagus and potato gratin I was in heaven.
None of us could manage dessert as we hadn’t even finished our mains so opted for dessert wine or coffees. It will probably be somewhere we go from time to time but they need to sort their waiting staff.
Probably get this out of the way first, it's not 5 star but its better than 4 star. 4.5 would be accurate.We went on the Auckland restaurant month menu a couple of weeks ago, it was a chance to see a small part of The Grill before going back to sample the full menu. It was a great deal we got a ARmonth menu x 2, this included entree, main, dessert and a wine each and we ordered 3 sides and it was still far cheaper than we usually spend on a dinner out.To boost the service was EXCEPTIONAL all the way down to the fact they called me this week for feedback something I believe is a great system as customers are somethimes reluctent to be honest face to face.The server we had knew almost every question I asked except one about where the mustard was from as it was amazing but he quickly found out.So food, bread to begin, fennel bread was supreme lots of flavour and a nice taste at the beginning of a meal. I had salmon gravlax which was light, refreshing and they even managed to get me to enjoy my much hated avocado. The halloumi was a tad to sweet from the honey but again a great entree.On to the mains firstly all the good bits, sides are $10 but are massive. Mac and cheese could be an entree! The short rib was giant and perfectly cooked and matched with a great array of mustards the wholegrain being a stand out. The other main was a venison and chocolate version of chilli con carne. It was in the chilli and sides that The Grill lost their half star.The chilli was not richer and more flavourful than a normal chilli which was how it was described, and the sides although big and looking outstanding where a little bland. The nuts on the broccolini could of been toasted and in the wifes words our home verions of mac and cheese and potato gratin had more flavour.Anyway I dont want to end on that note generally the food was brilliant and this finished with the treacle tart which matched with the rest of the food so well and was a great end to
If you're a fan of steak (and let's face it, why would anyone choose to be a vego), then The Grill at Skycity is in my mind Auckland's best experience. It's worth saving up to splash out a bit - the service, atmosphere and flavour definately warrants the pricing.
On my most recent visit (have been about 5 times now (lucky buggar I know), I had the slow cooked lamb shank after seeing another customer get it - this dish is the bomb! Have never been able to not have the duck fat chips either - I reckon if there's one meal I could have every day for a year this would be it! Well done The Grill - you continue to set the benchmark that all restaurants should be looking to follow.
From the moment we entered we were treated to a wonderful experience by the warm and friendly staff who were were very knowledgeable about food and wine and gave excellent recommendations. Steaks were to die for and LOVE the duck fat chips. Sadly we didn't leave enough room for dessert but will definitely be back to sample those.
Went to the Grill with work and was very impressed by the venue, the staff and (more importantly) the food!! Excellent service. Highly recommend
Went to the Grill for lunch last week, nice decor but had to ask to turn down music because I couldn't hear my friends talking who were sitting next to me. Over priced for what you get, $30-$40 for a steak, and I mean a piece of steak only, no vegs, no nothing. You have order if you want veg or anything else to eat. Definitely wouldn't recommend and I won't go again.
The Grill by Sean Connolly has been much talked about so it was time that I gave it a go. Made a last minute booking and was quite happy that they were able to fit us in.
We arrived at the Grill and the first impression which I got was that it had quite a relaxed environment despite it being a fine dining establishment. Seating-wise, it was comfortable but rather cosy. I could hear the conversation from my neighbours on either side. Either they were loud (cause of a noisy environment) or we were just rather close to one another.
While I did enjoy my meal overall. I thought that the highlight of the evening was probably the entree of duck liver parfait. The eye fillet was good, but didn't like the venison too much. For sides, we had the duck fat chips and the red cabbage and chilli slaw. My partner loved the duck fat chips while I couldn't really tell much of a difference although it was fried to a crisp -- which is good. The red cabbage slaw though, was not really to my liking as it was a bit too oily and wasn't quite sure where the chilli was in the dish.
Our desserts of a chocolate mousse and a souffle were alright. They definitely did well with the souffle but I preferred the chocolate mousse in flavour as the souffle was rather eggy flavoured.
Service was efficient and friendly. Although, not really as warm or engaging as some other places. Was recommended a really good Pinot Noir to go with our meal.
Overall, my experience was good. No doubt about the quality of the food here, but be prepared to pay for it.
Sean Connolly is an absolute master and the grill is a real testament to the man. I've taken , and been with, clients to the Grill on numerous occasions over the last 6 months and I have never been disappointed.
The genuine, knowledgeable and forthcoming attitudes of the staff are also a key element as to why the Grill by Sean Connolly is well and truly up there with the best restaurants in Auckland no questions asked.
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