If you’re planning a trip to visit the vineyards in Marlborough in New Zealand’s South Island, you might wish to stop by a little small town, Blenheim. We did just that – flying in from the Rotorua airport in North Island to the Blenheim airport, with a stopover in Wellington. The transit was a smooth one. Before I go further, I do ask you to visit the Scotch Wine Bar in Blenheim New Zealand, largely because the quality of food and wine exceeded all expectations. I can imagine why it is rated so highly on Tripadvisor. While I was expecting to find good wines as we were near the Marlborough region, the food was amazing too. I had one of the best braised beef dishes there.
I really liked the casual ambience of Scotch Wine Bar. It felt like a hip bar and restaurant you could visit while casually dressed. When we were there we saw families, adults at a class reunion and groups of friends enjoying the food and wine there.
The wine list was mostly New Zealand labels of wines in the area. They were not mainstream. I think some of the wines were unfiltered (yeast left in the bottle), which gave it a darker colour and more interesting flavour. Here are the wines we got and they went very well with the food we ordered.
The food was the best part of the night. There were so many good dishes and it was hard to pick a favourite. But if I had to pick one, it would be the braised beef, because I had not come across such a beautiful pink braised beef till this day, and it was really something. The flavours did not disappoint too, and the ingredients in each dish complemented each other very well.
1. Marinated Olives
I’m really glad that S and I like olives – these were one of the most tasty olives I’ve had, largely because of the seasoning.
2. Roasted cabbage
I remembered that the sauce made for this dish was really flavourful and soothing. It felt like the most delicious cabbage I had ever eaten.
3. Raw hanger steak
I found this combination of ingredients to be a really tasty one which did the raw hanger steak justice. It was not too beefy, and the herbs and a slight bit of vinegar helped to add a different dimension to the dish.
4. Braised beef
In this case, the braised beef went very well with the anchiade sauce and spring onion oil. It was done just right and had the ‘melt in your mouth’ feeling with each bite. I like how the meat just fell right off the bone, a sign that it was really tender and that a lot of preparation work at gone into it.
5. Fried Chicken
The fried chicken was what we had expected. The dipping sauce was quite nice too, but the amount of food we ordered was little too much for two people.
The Travelling Squid’s Take
Our dinner at the Scotch Wine Bar in Blenheim New Zealand was a beautiful meal, comparable to the quality of food we had in Ortolana in Auckland. I liked how it was also more affordable and that there was a long wine list available for food and wine pairing. I think the chefs really have potential, (and if you’re reading this, here’s a shout out to try to make your way to Sydney and Melbourne and work for some of the top restaurants there!). It almost seemed that the chefs had the potential to be featured on Netflix’s food series, Chef’s Table.
Why the Scotch Wine Bar in Blenheim New Zealand is highly recommended
- Address: 24-26 Maxwell Road, Blenheim, Marlborough
- Tel: +64 (0)3 579 1176
- Website: https://www.scotchbar.co.nz/
- Menu: https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0864/6742/files/Dinner_Menu_10_Dec_19.pdf?86
- Opening hours: Monday – Friday, 4pm till late