Vinnies is one of Auckland’s top fine dining restaurant which has a reputation for exceptional food and comfortable dining environment. It is located on Jervois Road which has ample street parking making the start of my dining experience stress-free.

We arrived at 8:30PM to a busy restaurant and a full dining room. After being shown to our table, we were greeted by a lovely and charming waiter who was very friendly and offered to answer any queries regarding the menu as well as given us wine tasters in order for us to find the perfect wine.

As we weren’t that hungry that day, we did not order any entrees and instead ordered their savoury cones. These appetisers are made of soy sauce-flavoured wafer cones and has three different flavours – white truffle hummus, kingfish & chive creme and chicken liver & port parfait – and for $18, you get two of each flavour. It even comes in a cute metal stand that beautifully displays them!

For mains, I ordered the Angus eye fillet served with horseradish gratin, crushed peas, béarnaise butter and black olive jus. The steak was cooked perfectly and was very moist, tender and scrumptious. My friend initially ordered the tiger king prawn entree as a main and the chef was lovely enough to ask whether we wanted scallops with it, just to make it more interesting. Therefore, she got something that wasn’t on the menu – Tiger king prawns and scallops with grilled mandarin, wilted greens and creamed potato with a citrus sauce – and it was superb.

And of course, we couldn’t leave without having dessert. Vinnies’ dessert menu is quite interesting and different and being unable to chose which one to get, we ordered the dessert platter for two. First of all, I have to applaud the chef’s presentation of the platter as it looked so stunning that we had to admire it for a while before we tucked in. Second, each component of the platter was well matched and super yummy. Our platter consisted of a trio of sorbet (buffalo milk, mint with chocolate chip & raspberry), passionfruit creme brulee, chocolate fondant, pineapple puree with coco-cola jelly and a berry and vanilla pudding with a meringue topping. My favourite would have to be the buffalo milk sorbet!

Overall, Vinnies is a must try for anyone that loves fine dining which incorporates fresh seasonal ingredients and beautiful presentation. Our meal totaled to around $120 after the $40 entertainment card discount, and considering we did not order any entrees, Vinnies is on the rather expensive scale. However, it is a MUST try and I hope you find the experience as enjoyable as mine!

Date: Saturday 21st August 2010 | Location: 166 Jervois Road, Herne Bay, Auckland | Food: Contemporary Cuisine


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