3 (Fri) May 2019
Awhi Farms Savannah Grass-Fed Beef Bone-In Sirloin
at The Cut
-Auckland Central, New Zealand–
Mission to Fiji, Day 9.
- Day 1 (10.110 Grilled Tenderloin…)
- Day 2 (10.111 Swordfish)
- Day 3 (10.112 Snapper Carpaccio)
- Day 4 (10.113 Dragon Wrap)
- Day 5 (10.114 Steamed Coral Trout…)
- Day 6 (10.115 Roasted Chicken with Spaghetti…)
- Day 7 (10.116 Rourou Balls & Grilled Fish)
- Day 8 (10.117 …Pizza)
Transiting thru Auckland, on my way home. Finished a series of planning meetings and ocular inspections – Friday and Saturday in Nadi, Monday and Tuesday in Suva, Thursday in Nadi again – in preparation for the Fifth Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentarian Forum on Global Health, which will be held in Fiji in August 2019. It was the third such mission in advance of the Fifth Meeting (see previously 10.049 Termite Mushroom Steamed Halibut).
The return itinerary has me on an absurd 12-hr layover in Auckland. I’m not complaining, as it gives me an opportunity to explore the city – first time in New Zealand.
New Zealand is the 16th country and Auckland is the 32nd city outside of Korea where I’ve had Korean food in a restaurant.
- USA: 01.01 Silicon Valley (San Jose, Santa Clara, etc.) CA; 01.02 New York NY; 01.03 Boston MA; 01.04 Northern Virginia VA; 01.05 East Bay (Oakland, Berkeley, etc.) CA; 01.06 Los Angeles CA (9.353 Chosun Galbee); 01.07 San Francisco CA; 01.08 San Diego CA; 01.12 Chicago IL; 01.13 Washington DC; 01.24 Guam (6.283 The Boss’s Beefy Birthday Bash); Las Vegas NV 01.30 (9.356 Longhorn Steak)
- THAILAND: 02.09 Bangkok; 02.10 Pattaya
- SWITZERLAND: 03.11 Geneva
- UNITED KINGDOM: 04.14 London
- CHINA: 05.15 Beijing
- CAMBODIA: 06.16 Phnom Penh (3.269 Fried Beef with Red Ants)
- LAO: 07.17 Vientiane (3.272 Pho Ga)
- PHILIPPINES: 08.18 Metro Manila (5.005 Ki for Ki); 08.20 Batangas (5.223 Galbi Tang and More) / 08.28 Subic (8.324 Ssam Bap); 08.29 Puerto Galera (8.365 Samgyeopsal)
- FIJI: 09.19 Suva (5.178 Bibimbab)
- PAPUA NEW GUINEA: 10.21 Port Moresby (5.276 Spicy Chicken Muchim)
- RUSSSIA: 11.22 Moscow (5.286 Chili Mango Prawns…)
- AUSTRALIA: 12.23 Melbourne (5.342 Crocodile Meat…)
- MALAYSIA: 13.25 Kuala Lumpur (6.333 Jacked — Three Ways)
- JAPAN: 14.26 Wakoshi (7.266 Gu Ba); 14.27 Tokyo (8.202 Clam and Spicy Soft Tofu Stew)
- MONGOLIA: 15.31 Ulaanbaatar (10.058 Tsuiwan)
- NEW ZEALAND: 16.32 Auckland (10.118 Awhi Farms Savannah Grass-Fed Beef Bone-In Sirloin)
Generally, the food was good, if unremarkable. High quality, competently prepared. While I did enjoy the meal as a meal per se, I didn’t enjoy it at all as an experience. (I should’ve stayed at the Queen’s Ferry and had their “Build Your Own Platter” – doesn’t that sound intriguing? Maybe next time.)
A couple years back, I took self-righteous joy in lambasting a steakhouse in Manila for marketing their steaks with pompous bullshit like source attributions, grade ratings, and feeding practices (see 8.085 Darling Downs Wagyu MS 5+ Grassed-Raised, Grain-Finished Ribeye Steak). The Cut, even worse, exploits the supplier’s Maori heritage, twisting the apparent empowerment of indigenous peoples into a perverse selling point.
Nevertheless, I bought it. At the time, already anticipating what item should be featured on this historic first-ever New Zealand post, I wanted it be as local as possible. However, because the country doesn’t really have any signature dishes – at least, not that I yet know of – I thought that the ingredients at least should be local. And so their ploy worked perfectly on a tourist sucker like me.
In any case, the steak was pretty good. Clean, beefy flavor. Just the right amount of marbling to make it succulent without getting too umami. Tender with a bit of chew. A tad overcooked to medium. Too much salt on the crust.
In the Strata Lounge at the airport.
As always, I am grateful for and respectful of the opportunity to travel, especially via business class, including lounge access. Any comments here, even the negative ones, are simply relative to other business class experiences, not complaints per se.
BEST IN LOUNGE – an on-going ranking of dining experiences in business lounges:
- TURKEY, Istanbul (IST): Istanbul Ataturk Airport – Turkish Airlines Lounge (8.052 Köfte + Piliç) (9.056 Pide)
- SINGAPORE (SIN): Singapore Changi Airport – Singapore Airlines Lounge (6.237 Coconut Panna Cotta)
- JORDAN, Amman (AMM): Queen Alia International Airport – Petra Lounge (9.267 Dukkah-Spiced Salmon)
- NETHERLANDS, Amsterdam (AMS): Amsterdam Airport Schiphol – KLM Crown Lounge (6.311 Beef & Beetroot Meatballs)
- UNITED ARAB EMIRATES, Abu Dhabi (AUH): Abu Dhabi International Airport – Etihad Airways Lounge (6.154 Shakshouka)
- AUSTRALIA, Brisbane (BNE): Brisbane Airport – Singapore Airlines Lounge (6.242 Scallops)
- JAPAN, Tokyo (HND): Haneda Airport International Terminal (8.202 Clam and Spicy Tofu Stew)
- CHINA, Hong Kong SAR (HKG): Hong Kong International Airport – Club Autus Lounge (10.042 Grilled Peri Peri Chicken Thigh)
- NEW ZEALAND, Aukland: Aukland Airport – Strata Lounge (10.118 Awhi Farms Savannah Grass-Fed Beef Bone-In Sirloin)
- KOREA, Seoul/Incheon (ICN): Incheon International Airport (Terminal 2) – Korean Air Prestige Lounge (East) (9.016 Probably the Best Mul Naeng Myeon); (10.110 Grilled Tenderloin with Rosemary Sauce)
- JORDAN, Amman (AMM): Queen Alia International Airport – Royal Jordanian Crown Lounge (6.159 Memories of Hummus)
- THAILAND, Bangkok (BKK): Suvarnabhumi Airport – Royal Silk Lounge (7.306 Fried Black Cod …)
- GERMANY, Munich (MUC): Flughafen München – Lufthansa Lounge (6.307 Chicken in Cream Sauce)
- RUSSIA, Moscow (DME): Moscow Domodedovo Airport (5.286 Chili Mango Prawns)
- CHINA, Hong Kong SAR (HKG): Hong Kong International Airport – Cathay Pacific Lounge (The Wing) (5.182 Har Gao); (10.049 Termite Mushroom Steamed Halibut)
- PHILIPPINES, Manila (MNL): Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Terminal 3) – Cathay Pacific Lounge (10.042 Grilled Peri Peri Chicken Thigh)
- MALAYSIA, Kuala Lumpur (KUL): Kuala Lumpur International Airport – AirAsia Premium Red Lounge (9.183 Grilled Y/F Tuna Steak)
- INDIA, New Delhi (DEL): Indira Gandhi International Airport (7.313 Braised Pork Balls)
- KOREA, Seoul/Incheon (ICN): Incheon International Airport – Asiana Business Class Lounge (Satellite Terminal) (5.363 Past + Sandwich for the Elite)
- KOREA, Seoul/Incheon (ICN): Incheon International Airport – Korean Air Prestige Lounge (Satellite Terminal) (6.090 Shin Ramyeon BLACK)
- KOREA, Seoul/Incheon (ICN): Incheon International Airport – Star Alliance Lounge (2.036 Shin Ramyeon…)
- SRI LANKA, Colombo (CMB): Bandaranaike International Airport (9.191 Grilled Beef Tenderloin)
- LEBANON, Beirut (BEY): Beirut-Rafic Hariri International Airport, LAT (Lebanese Air Transport) Lounge (9.336 Sea Bass en Papillote)
- MALDIVES, Male (MLE): Velana International Airport (9.191 Grilled Beef Tenderloin)
- PHILIPPINES, Manila (MNL): Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Terminal 1) – PAGSS Lounge (9.330 Parrot Fish with Sweet & Sour Sauce)
- USA, New York (JFK): John F Kennedy International Airport – Korean Air Lounge (7.039 Sauteed Cod Fillet)
- SWITZERLAND, Geneva (GVA): Geneva International Airport (6.311 Beef & Beetroot Meatballs)
- PHILIPPINES, Manila (MNL): Ninoy Aquino International Airport – MIASCOR Lounge (4.272 Chicken Curry…); (6.305 Chicken Congee)
- FIJI, Nadi (NAD): Nadi International Airport (5.181 Sliced Roast Lamb)
- USA, Los Angeles (LAX): Los Angeles International Airport – Korean Air Lounge (9.361 Beef Bulgogi)
- MONGOLIA, Ulaanbataar (ULN): Chinggis Khaan International Airport (10.061 Stock Soup of Bone and Stew Meat)
On the final leg of the journey back home.
The food remains abysmal.
Just before landing.
With the two meals on this flight, PAL has just dropped to last place on the list.
BEST IN CLASS – an on-going ranking of dining experiences on business class flights:
- Qatar Airlines: MNL > DOH > DME (5.279 Assorted Hot Mezzah); DME > DOH > MNL (5.286 Chili Mango Prawns)
- Singapore Airlines: MNL > SIN > BNE (6.237 Coconut Panna Cotta); BNE > SIN > MNL (6.243 Ggongchi Kimchi Jjigae)
- Turkish Airlines: MNL > IST (8.046 Grilled Seafood Selections); GVA > IST (8.051 Fresh Herb Baby Chicken); IST > MNL (8.052 Köfte + Piliç); MNL > IST > GVA (9.050 Grilled Seafood Selection); GVA > IST (9.055 Grilled Lamb Chop); MNL > IST (9.330 Parrot Fish with Sweet & Sour Sauce); BEY > IST > MNL (9.336 Sea Bass en Papilotte)
- KLM Royal Dutch Airlines: GVA > AMS > ICN (6.311 Beef & Beetroot Meatballs)
- Asiana Airlines: MNL > ICN (2.036 Shin Ramyeon…); ICN > MNL (6.048 Ssambap); MNL > ICN (6.305 Chicken Congee); ICN > MNL (6.321 Ssambap); ICN > MNL (8.261 Ssambap)
- Etihad Airways: MNL > AUH > AMM (6.154 Shakshouka); AMM > AUH > MNL (6.160 Zaalou-Crusted Chicken Breast); AUH > AMM (9.261 Prawns Machboos); AMM > AUH (9.267 Dukkah-Spiced Salmon); AUH > MNL (9.268 Malabar Grouper)
- Korean Air: ICN > NAD (5.175 Prestigious Repast); MNL > ICN (6.021 Bibimbap); MNL > ICN > NAD (6.101 Coconut Carrot Cream Soup); NAD > ICN > MNL (6.111 Asparagus Cream Soup); ICN > NAD (6.314 Bibimbap); NAD > ICN (6.319 Seared Seafood…); MNL > ICN > JFK (7.032 Manhattan); JFK > ICN (7.039 Sauteed Cod Fillet); ICN > MNL (7.041 Gom Tang); MLE > CMB > ICN (9.191 Grilled Beef Tenderloin); ICN > MNL (9.193 Roasted Halibut with Dill Cream Sauce); MNL > ICN > NAD (9.284 Feta Cheese with Sliced Fig and Parma Ham); NAD > ICN > MNL (9.287 Spicy Squid & Bean Sprout Stir-Fry with Rice); ICN > LAX (9.349 Pea Sprouts with Garlic); LAX > ICN (9.361 Beef Bulgogi); ICN > MNL (9.362 Bibimbap); ULN > ICN (10.061 Stock Soup of Bone and Stew Meat); MNL > ICN > NAD (10.110 Grilled Beef Tenderloin with Rosemary Sauce)
- Thai Airways: MNL > BKK > DEL (7.306 Fried Black Cod …); DEL > BKK > MNL (7.313 Braised Pork Balls)
- Cathay Pacific Airways: HKG > MNL (5.182 Har Gao); HKG > MNL (10.049 Termite Mushroom Steamed Halibut)
- Deutsche Lufthansa: ICN > MUC > GVA (6.307 Chicken in Cream Sauce)
- Fiji Airways: NAD > HKG (5.181 Sliced Roast Lamb); HKG > NAD (10.042 Grilled Peri Peri Chicken Thigh); NAD > HKG (10.049 Termite Mushroom Steamed Halibut); NAD > AUK (10.118 Awhi Farms Savannah Grass-Fed Beef Bone-In Sirloin)
- Philippine Airlines: MNL > MEL (5.335 Chicken Tausi); AUK > MNL (10.118 Awhi Farms Savannah Grass-Fed Beef Bone-In Sirloin)
AMM = Amman // AMS = Amsterdam // AUH = Abu Dhabi // AUK = Aukland // BEY = Beirut // BKK = Bangkok // BNE = Brisbane // CMB = Colombo // DEL = New Delhi // DOH = Doha // DME (Domodedovo) = Moscow // GVA = Geneva // HKG = Hong Kong // ICN = Incheon // IST = Istanbul // JFK (John F Kennedy) = New York // LAX = Los Angeles // MEL = Melbourne // MLE = Male // MNL = Manila // MUC = Munich // NAD = Nadi // SIN = Singapore // ULN = Ulaanbataar