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A Night of Feasting – Merivale Winter Feasts Launch Party 2009

A few weeks back Merivale held a launch party at Establishment to celebrate the introduction of their new Winter Feasts menu – a collection of one to three courses served with wine or James Squire beer for the reasonable sum of $35.

The event was quite lively with the media and general public alike enjoying free drinks from the bar whilst sampling the Winter Feasts menu from the various restaurants of the Merivale group.

The embedded video below should give you some idea of the atmosphere and mood around the Establishment bar.

Head chefs Peter Doyle & Nobuyuki Ura, & Masterchef contestant Michelle Darlington.

As with the inaugural March into Merivale launch party, the head chefs were they representing their respective restaurant and making their dishes available to the public as fast as they were being consumed. One noted surprise chef was the Masterchef contestant Michelle Darlington, working away the Mad Cow counter preparing a canape here or taking time out for a photo with “random” people.

I’d also heard on twitter that she’d had a work experience stint in the Lotus kitchen. Maybe she’s worked her way around the Merivale kitchens…

The displays representing each restaurant in the Merivale group had a moody feel to them with the constrast of deep shadows and harsh lighting. This made for some hard times taking any decent food photos without the use of a flash.

Speaking of which…

Bistro CBD: Duck Rillette with Beetroot, Cornishons et Croute.


Bistro CBD: White Chocolate Tartlettes.

Est.: Tartare of Ocean Trout, Cucumber, Ponzu & Coriander.


Est.: Tuscan Bean Stew & Braised Beef Cheeks Tart.

Lotus: Tuna Tartare with Sweet Wasabi.


Lotus: Vietnamese Style Chicken Croutons.

Mad Cow: Goats Curd, Pear & Rocket Mini Tart.

Mad Cow: Signature Beef Tartare.

Ucello: Tiramisu, served in chocolate cups.

That was just a sample of what was on offer. For more info with regards to the Winter Feasts menu specials at the various Merivale restaurants, please check out the Merivale group website.

You can also check out the blog coverage of the Merivale Winter Feasts launch party (at the time of post) at:
Citrus and Candy
Grab Your Fork
eatshow&tell
one bite more
Ooh, Look…
Simon Food Favourites

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{ 15 comments… add one }
  • billy@atablefortwo July 6, 2009, 10:42 pm

    Love that video! It tells so much story than just pics and text. Btw, have u consider about the licensing for using commercial music?

  • Ellie July 6, 2009, 11:56 pm

    Drooling on my keyboard looking at the pics. Another great post. Love the effort you have put on all your posts. You have a big fan here :p

  • Belle@Ooh, Look July 7, 2009, 12:03 am

    Aww, this brings back memories – of great food, the anticipation and dark photos (yours are heaps better than mine, natch). I'm going to Teppanyaki tomorrow, hope it's well-lit!

  • Simon Food Favourites July 7, 2009, 12:23 am

    great recap and video very cool. did you shoot this on a proper professional digital video camera. you had depth of field going on. i liked how you focussed on the pretty wait staff hehe i think i saw my friends in it

  • Betty July 7, 2009, 1:23 am

    Beautiful photos, everything looks great! Smart people at Merivale!

  • K July 7, 2009, 8:31 am

    wow the tiramisu in chocolate cups idea is great! I'm definitely gonna try that out myself!

  • panda July 7, 2009, 12:00 pm

    the food looks fantastic! i keep telling myself to head over to try the restaurants but i keep procrastinating – if only i worked at that end of the city so the restaurants were more accessible!

  • Simon July 7, 2009, 12:01 pm

    Hi billy!…or does it tell so much story than just my pics and text :P

    Thanks dude. Took a bit of work but I'm reasonably happy with the results considering it was my first attempt of video on the new camera.

    I could have just used the captured audio, as the same song was being played by the DJ. With the background noise though…? Not as sexy :)

    Hi Ellie! Thanks! Appreciate that you appreciate the effort put in :)

    Yay, I have a fan! hehe :)

    Hi Belle!

    I thought your openning comment was in reference to how long it had taken to put together this post! :)

    Hope you enjoyed yourself at Teppanyaki. Would love to see how the food was there.

    Hi Simon Food Favourites!
    Thanks dude. The only reason for the "professionalism" was the lens on my DSLR when it was shooting the video. Would have loved access to a pro camera as it would have been less fiddly manual labour & more focus on shooting.

    In hindsight, the edit was a bit of a tribute to the ladies of the Establishment bar, though that wasn't the intent. Had to fill the dead space with something… :)

    I think I saw you in the video too!

    Hi Betty! Thanks! Those Merivale peeps seem like they know what they're doing :)

    Hi K! Yeah, the tiramisu was a treat! Would have been better if the tiramisu was built within the cups rather than spoon in on service. Less air pockets :)

  • Simon July 7, 2009, 12:06 pm

    Hi Panda! They know how to make food look good!

    Maybe you should get together some blogger to go with. Make an occasion out of it or something. Would be a shame to miss out on the Winter Feasts specials.

  • FFichiban July 9, 2009, 8:50 am

    Great video man! Esp the voyeuristic part at 0:28 ;) and the 2 ladies checking u out at 1:28!

  • Rilsta July 10, 2009, 6:46 am

    All your photos make the food look amazing! Great work!

  • Simon July 10, 2009, 12:45 pm

    Hi FFichiban! Glad you liked the video. It was fun to put together. A lot of work. but fun all the same :)

    I had to cut what I thought was a pretty funny moment cause it didn't work with the feel of the edit. May have to put it up at some stage in the future.

    Hi Rilsta! Thanks, though the chef's did most of the work :)

    Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment :)

  • Forager July 13, 2009, 9:31 am

    Nice photos, you must have a gooood camera :)

  • Yas July 21, 2009, 1:05 pm

    woo great photos!
    How much did you actually eat there? Cuz, I know you guys went out for dinner after Billy's opening night!! LOL

  • Simon July 23, 2009, 10:34 am

    Hi Forager! No better than yours… :)

    Hi Yas! Thanks dude :)

    Didn't actually eat a whole lot. Partly because I figured that we'd be going out for dinner after the gallery, partly because I was too busy taking video and photos to do so.

    Oh well, there is always the next launch party :)

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