Shop organic food at our Arrowtown Cafe
Walk into A Taste of Gibbston Valley, located in historic Arrowtown, and you’ll be met with warm smiles and the tantalizing sights and smells of a gourmet artisan deli.
Items like their pumpkin, smoked provolone and thyme filo torta; Italian hazelnut baci cake; and filled Italian flat bread with spinach, feta and pinenut beckon behind a glass window at the front counter.
Everything is handmade by Executive Chef Mark Sage, his wife and Sous Chef Sue Sage and the rest of the culinary team at the Gibbston Valley Winery Restaurant. Along with the array of expertly-crafted pastries, sandwichs and breads, the selection of meats, cheeses and fresh pastas made on sight are enough to stir any appetite into a frenzy. And, that’s just the beginning.
The entire shop is focused on sourcing the freshest local ingredients and providing visitors to Arrowtown with a place to find all-natural, and sometimes organic, fine food items to enjoy at the cafe or in your own home, and it doesn't stop there. The restaurant also features gourmet coffees made with 100% organic roasted beans and milk, locally-produced organic juices, organic natural soda, local craft beers and of course Gibbston Valley Winery's award-winning wines.
That's just what's on the menu. Keep walking past the counter and into the back left corner of the shop, and you’ll see its other forte. This area of the cafe is stocked with an exotic array of organic and specialty food items all geared towards helping customers create their own fine-dining experience at home.
Some of the items on the shelves include pure citrus oils, Spanish almonds, award-winning fresh buffalo mozzarella and precious balsamic vinegar made from the best reserves. Items like the pickled dates, olives, preserved lemons and blue cod pate are Chef Mark Sage's special recipes.
Other featured items are from local and regional producers including local farmers Dave Aitken and Ben Gordon and regional producers the Clevedon Valley Buffalo Company.
Aitken has been farming Boer cross goats for 10 years. With the opening of A Taste of Gibbston, he decided to bring his delicately flavoured sweet Springburn goat meat to the local market place.
His goats are selectively bred for prime meat production and farmed in Gibbston High Country in a natural environment. Aitken describes it as a win win relationship.
The goats control weeds as they graze on sweet briar rosehips, wild thyme, matagouri, silver tussock, marjoram and grasses while at the same time make for superb eating. Aitken recommends slow roasting the goat meat as it’s very lean. Add a little wine, garlic and herbs to a leg, cover the dish and roast long and slow.
Clevedon Valley Buffalo Company
Clevedon Valley Buffalo Company mozzarella and yogurt is another highlight from the pantry. Owned and operated by Richard and Helen Dorresteyn, the company’s farm is located just south of Auckland on the shores of Hauraki Golf.
The Clevedon Valley Buffalo Company is home to about 200 head of buffalo farmed for their rich milk and flavourful beef. The company has won multiple awards and gold medals at New Zealand’s national cheese and artisan awards.
Apart from its rich flavour, buffalo milk has many health benefits too. Pure white buffalo milk contains more protein and calcium than cows milk. It’s higher in fat but contains about half the cholesterol of cow’s milk. People who are intolerant to regular milk and dairy products often find that buffalo milk is easier to digest.
Cardrona Merino Lamb
If it's lamb you're after, A Taste of Gibbston Valley has that too. Next to Aitken's goat meat you'll find Cardrona Merino Lamb from local famer Ben Gordon. His lamb is sought after by gourmet chefs and the Cardrona Merino slow-roasted lamb shoulder is well-known as one of Central Otago's specialites. Unlike your average lamb, merinos are lean and fine grained resulting in more dense and darker meat.
His sweet-tasting merinos are raised on a hillside and eat a natural mixed diet, unlike paddock-farmed sheep that are raised on long grass and get little exercise.
To create the signature slow-roasted lamb shoulder, Gordon recommends seasoning it with sea salt, ground black pepper and freshly chopped rosemary. He suggests pairing it with sauteed garlic potatoes.
Along with an array of delightful food products, the pantry also carries Riedel glassware, aprons, recipe cards from the Gibbston Valley Winery restaurant and other boutique items, enabling you to create a culinary masterpiece from your kitchen.
The shop even has fresh-cut flowers provided by Wild Poppies to help your dining table centrepiece really blossom.
From an artisan deli and café to award-winning wine, A Taste of Gibbston features a locally-inspired gourmet dining experience that guests can enjoy in the shop or at home.