Where NOT to eat in Auckland during the America's Cup
Mecca in Chancery lane
My friend and I were having a bit of a bad day so we decided to go to lunch in a gorgeous area of Auckland ... The Chancery Lane. We haven’t been to lunch here due to finances for a year or two so this was a bit of a treat. We decided upon the restaurant called Mecca and ordered an Antipasto Platter for the table. This comes with 4 green and 8 brown olives, crusty bread, an olive oil dip and a hummus dip, 2 pieces of cured meat, and a few small pieces of cheese for $28.
We have been here before and have always let people know where it is and to go try it as the food used to be delightful. Don't get me wrong here I was happy to pay the $28. For an antipasto platter except for the fact that it was the worst one we had ever had. It truly was not nice and tasteless (literally). It is so sad that this place has slipped so far especially since it was in Metro magazine in 1998 as one of "the best" places to eat.
I did tell the staff of my concerns regarding the taste of the food and asked if the hummus had been frozen as I have no idea how anyone can make a hummus without any taste. I was assured that it was made fresh when ordered (yea right!). I was astounded when the waiter then turned his back on me as if he was dismissing me. All I could think was ... what our overseas visitors are going to think of our country if this is the service they can expect when having what should be a lovely meal in a quiet area of our fine city.
If you’re in Auckland and you wish for a quiet wonderful meal I would not suggest you go to this particular Mecca. However chancery lane is a wonderful place to have lunch or tea for that matter and there are other restaurants next door to this one that still appear to have kept up the taste of their food and care about your patronage.
If you’re a lover of antipasto platters like I am you will know that it is about having lots of different flavours to taste. I almost always go for these platters if they are available as every mouthful is new and exciting. I believe this is why I am so very disappointed in what we were served and how we were treated.
If you wish to make your own hummus dip here is a nice recipe for you to try. I sent it to Mecca when I emailed them as well lol.
2 cups chickpeas, drained and rinsed, or soaked if using dried
3-5 tablespoons lemon juice (depending on taste)
3 tablespoons tahini
2 cloves garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup olive oil
Combine remaining ingredients in blender or food processor. Blend for 3-5 minutes on low until thoroughly mixed and smooth.
Place in serving bowl, and create a shallow well in the centre of the hummus.
Add a small amount (1-2 tablespoons) of olive oil in the well. Garnish with parsley (optional).
Serve immediately with fresh, warm or toasted pita bread, or cover and refrigerate.
1 small eggplant ~ cut in pieces rub oil and lightly salt then place in oven to brown for 3 minutes each side. Put into blender with other ingredients.
If you wish you could add a sliced red chili or a dash of cayenne pepper for a spicy kick.
Hummus can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Add a little olive oil if it appears to be too dry. Freezing can remove the taste so I wouldn’t suggest it in saying that it can be kept in the freezer for up to one month.