Hola! Visited the MOA Brewing Co. New Zealand Bar and Grill today with the family for dinner. We wanted to try something new and one of the restaurant concepts we wanted to try was a bar. Since I’m finally of legal age to try alcohol, I was excited at the prospect. Even though I didn’t consume any alcohol this time, I loved the outlet we went to. The place was really comfortable in the sense that there was a musician playing music outdoors and the ambience was warm and great despite being partly a bar. What I liked about the place was that there weren’t many people, so I had some privacy which I really enjoyed. Service was alright with the staff serving us the food pretty quickly and also attending to our requests efficiently. A good first impression!
Note: they’re famous for their award-winning MOA beers so do give it a try if you like those.
The price of the food is a bit more costly between $10 to $30. Even though I did feel some heart pain and reluctance at first, I felt that it was worth the try because the food was all awesome! For four people, we ordered pork ribs, steak meal with garden salad with egg (or soup of the day) and ice cream [dinner set meal], and carbonara. We also had root beer, hot chocolate and an interesting drink called Rosella, which someone resembled a mocktail or a cocktail, although I don’t think it was either of them because this was made of hibiscus and there was no alcohol content. I enjoyed every bit of my meal and the drinks. Plus, it was one of the times I got to spend with my family and I was really elated to be able to have such an opportunity to eat with them because soon enough, I will be gone to stay in the university and suddenly I’ll be seeing them twice a week at most. It’s a change I don’t really know what to prepare myself for and I’m both excited and apprehensive about university right now.
Back to the restaurant bar. Starting off with the garden salad, the sauce made the dish heavenly. I’m the type of person who dislikes eating vegetables plain, hence I’d always add some sauce or cheese to it to flavour it up. This sauce was a tad too overpowering, not because it’s too strong because I find it just right, but because the taste lingers in your mouth and thus when I was trying the Rosella I felt that I couldn’t really taste the drink, so no specific reviews on that because all I know is that it tasted fine even with the sauce mixed in my mouth. I enjoyed having cherry tomatoes and eggs, so I actually find this garden salad passable for once because I could actually eat it and enjoy it.
I ordered the carbonara for myself. I recommend this dish to all pasta lovers because it was absolutely delicious. The sauce was rich and tasty, making the pasta extremely flavourful instead of bland or salty. The sauce was not overpowering and complemented the dish very well, which is what I call an excellent dish especially since eating time was only about ten to fifteen minutes for me during dinner hour. With mushrooms, bacon, cherry tomatoes and broccoli mixed together with the pasta, I really savoured this dish. It is filling, so don’t be deceived by the seemingly small(er) portion as compared to other outlets like Pastamania or Swensens as it’s only because of the shape of the bowl that makes it look smaller and more appetizing and presentable. Finish it clean!
My youngest sister ordered pork ribs which came with fries and coleslaw. This was excellent as the meat was soft, juicy and tender, with a great sauce that wasn’t overpowering and wasn’t too salty or strong. The pork ribs had a unique taste to it, not just the usual meat taste, which I think probably came from the way they cooked it (or marinated it) as well as the succulent meat. It was well done and I have high praise for this dish. Definitely worth a try if you love meat!
On the other hand, while the steak was good as well (ours was medium well), I found it a little too chewy. This makes it difficult for people who can’t really chew to eat because if you’re the kind who has problems with beef meat, then you might not fully enjoy the steak. The taste of the steak was quite average to me, nothing special and not filling according to my second sister. Although I love tender meat, I don’t like chewy meat that just gets stuck in your mouth for a long time and is unable to swallow. I usually have to chug these kind of meat down with a drink and while I managed to consume this without any water, it could have been better. I’m particular about beef because it’s the kind of dish that you either like or dislike. There’s hardly any in between because when it’s hard and tastes bad one just gets completely turned off by it, but yet if it’s excellent one wishes there were more meat to cut into and savour. Steak is the kind of dish that you want to see yourself enjoying the cutting as well as tasting the tenderness and juiciness of the meat.
I’m looking forward to trying an alcoholic beverage soon because there’s no escaping it in this society. I do not plan on drinking much as I’m not a fan of these kind of beverages but I find that quiet bars like these are usually beautiful and sleek. They give a peaceful and sophisticated vibe that I embrace and want to feel more often. It’s the same whether you go in during a sweltering afternoon or in the evenings, when the natural light is gone and the place is more dimly lit up with warm hanging lamps that evoke a warm or sultry atmosphere.
To digress a little, I’ve been more interested in fashion and food recently. More often than not I find myself going online to browse through people’s outfits and tips while reading food reviews on blogs and itching to try out the mouth-watering food they display. Especially so for cafes, which usually give an extremely comfortable and clean atmosphere that I could spend all day at either doing work or just reflecting on life. Hoping to continue looking for my style and keeping up an interest in something that I know I could apply more often and enjoy all at the same time. Cheers!