Photo Cred // Metro Eats
The gentle bustle of Parnell plays host to a raft of characteristic cafes, bars and restaurants. The old Rosehip Café has renamed, rebranded and redesigned the way we look at café and restaurant dining in the sub metro of Parnell. The quaint corner of Gladstone Road and Stanwell is now garnished by the latest addition to my favourite big company cafes in Auckland. The Hip Group, who brought you St Heliers Bar and Bistro, Ortolana, and the Takapuna Beach Café & Store, revamped the botanic hotspot to deliver a thing of beauty. Rosie [Roh – zee] lives up to the definition with its subtlety in fine details and calm atmosphere that would be delicate on the heads of even the most hung-over (as I was when I stumbled through its doors).
As Rosie was hailed by my friends as, “The best long lunch they had experienced ever,” I was cautious to not let myself get overhyped by the quality and service it had been fabled to provide. After putting our name down on a short waiting list – yes a waiting list, on a bloody Thursday – I thought that the place must be ”all that”. Surely a spot with a waiting list on a Thursday must be the greatest thing since sliced f*#$ing bread. I was not oversold (despite Chelsea’s best efforts). The place radiated sunlight as the full glass exterior meant you felt like you were dining in the folds of the rose gardens, with light stone tile floors to match the natural décor, beech brown tables lightened the façade in a subtle attempt to make you feel at home. Under the florally luminescent lighting piece central to the restaurant you take a seat at natural dark brown chairs among scattered colourful woven stools. White sliders often surround you as you are faced with menus that scream of hand made care which boasts the delicate comfort Rosie was looking to create. Framing the paper were leatherback folds that complimented the table settings perfectly, and on top of this, even the staff uniforms reflected the calm character that they were well trained in recreating at each and every table.
Photo Cred // Eat Here Now
Being told of their fresh juices I unfortunately missed out on, I felt a quadruple shot Flat White was absolutely necessary to stop the room from spinning (f#%$ing hangovers), which I was looking forward to as the scent of AllPress coffee floated around the lightened décor. Then I turned to the food. A well structured menu with more foreign names than a National Geographic, dealt out a variety of menu staples like the classic eggs benny or bircher muesli, along with a number of options that would make the bravest of foodies excited. I went for the smashed eggs, pictured below, an awesome dish which - complemented by the most unpronouncable of cheeses - chucked caramelised onions in with your classic eggs on toast. The menu definitely catered for all tastes and appetites, as all dishes were plated up and presented in unusually shaped black bowls unique to the restaurant brand.
Photo Cred // My iPhone
Something that my stomach was however not brave enough for, and what looked stunning dished up on a friends plate, was the Kingfish dish (mind the rhyme). Tossed with a salad, this reasonably priced dish was seen taken to the majority of tables - I’m guessing it was a regular favourite - and was eagerly suggested by the quiet young waitress as we quizzed her on what seemed to be a dictionary in foreign ingredients. The elegance in plating is evidently a focus as all dishes were presented in style, something that was worth a mention by one of my more-than-hungover friends.
The revival of the Rosehip Café by the Hip Group was always a promising venture; following from previous Hip Group successes; and was an exciting prospect for the Parnell restaurant scene; and what many were waiting for. With many dubbing this place just what Parnell needed, the hype is lived up to, and in my opinion, it has stood above and beyond what was expected of it. Pat yourselves on the back Hip Group, once again you have delivered tenfold. As usual, check Rosie out on MenuMania or Facebook; 82 Gladstone Road would be more than happy to see you.