Where To Find: Auckland's Ultimate Winter Comfort Food

Beat those blues with Viva's round-up of Auckland's best carb-heavy dishes

The Fed's irresistible poutine fries. Photo / @ federaldelicatessen Instagram

The Fed
For winter comfort I turn to the warm embrace of Fed Deli. Cosied up in a booth with a pickle martini (trust me), poutine and a toasted chicken sandwich is what I call living. Follow it up with the banana toffee pie and a mug of Supreme filter coffee and roll on home. 86 Federal Street, City
— Johanna Thornton, deputy editor

For golden and fluffy crumpets to warm the soul look no further than Homestead cafe. Photo / Supplied

Ditch the inner-city (without going too far) with a visit to scenic Pah Homestead on a winter's weekend. There are exhibitions onsite, but the real art to appreciate is the cafe's house-made crumpets. They're a crisp, fluffy and golden thing of beauty that can be topped with smoked fish, an oozy poached egg and drowned in caper beurre blanc. I recommend sitting outside on the veranda overlooking the grounds. You can rug up with a blanket and keep cosy under the heaters. 72 Hillsborough Rd, Hillsborough
— Sarah Downs, writer

The persillade risotto at Augustus is a comforting blend of herbs and creamy parmesan with enough green vegetables atop to make you feel fine about the carb overload that you know you want in chilly weather. 1-3 St Marys Rd, St Marys Bay
— Janetta Mackay, beauty editor

Settle into the cosy interior of Ponsonby Rd Bistro on a winter's night. Photo / Supplied

Ponsonby Road Bistro 
I like my food tasty and uncomplicated, and on a winter’s night if I’m in need of a decent meal and can’t make it to nan’s house in time, I’ll head to Ponsonby Road Bistro for a Scotch or eye-fillet — specifically the chargrilled steak, chunky chips, herb-garlic butter, and salad. While I’m not a big meat eater, there are moments when you need a decent steak and they do a good job of it here. With a great wine list and low-key lighting, it’s cosy and unpretentious, the perfect way to end a long day at the office during the colder months. 165 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby
— Dan Ahwa, fashion editor

Our designer favours Miss Moonshines for ultimate winter feasting. Photo / @missmoonshines Instagram

Miss Moonshines
Although the ultimate attraction to dining at Miss Moonshines is the succulent meat, I wouldn’t leave without a side of the mac and cheese. It's served on a hot plate which is guaranteed to warm you from the inside out. The oozing cheesy goodness is irresistible. 3/130 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby
— Lucy Casley, designer

Coco's Cantina 
If you’re anything like me and try to cut down on your power bill by insulating yourself with layers of pasta, head to Coco’s Cantina. Their vegetarian ravioli is filled with lemony ricotta, swimming in burnt walnut butter and has a touch of rainbow chard to erase the guilt factor. 376 Karangahape Rd, City 
— Saru Krishnasamy, digital editor 

Britomart's Amano is great for sharing plates of pasta with a glass or two of prosecco. Photo / amano_nz Instagram

My ideal comfort meal is a late lunch, sat at the bar at Amano in downtown Auckland. I like the laid-back, informal luxury of sharing a few dishes and maybe a couple of glasses of prosecco. The menu at Amano caters for everyone, even those with tricky dietary requirements (like me) and the chefs are happy to go slightly off menu if you ask nicely. Last time I went I had Brussel spouts which aren't usually my favourite vegetable but were totally delicious. The stuffed courgette flowers are another highlight. If extra winter comfort is needed the bakery next door has plenty of cakes to take home. 66 - 68 Tyler St, Britomart 
— Rebecca Zephyr Thomas, photographer 

If you're gluten-free our commercial editor can recommend The Blue Breeze Inn for fragrant comfort food. Photo / Supplied

The Blue Breeze Inn 
Finding good ‘comfort’ food is hard when you’re gluten-intolerant, but a visit to The Blue Breeze Inn reminded me that not all winter warmers need be laden in cheese or gravy. Served with pickled mustard greens and school prawns, the stir-fried market fish was fragrant and warming, thanks to lashings of coriander and chilli. Pair that with a side of the wok-fried market greens, served with chilli, garlic, Shaoxing and black beans, and you’re onto a winner. 146 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby
— Ashleigh Cometti, commercial editor

Cotto’s spinach, goats cheese and sage dumplings are pretty conducive to winter nesting. As is the kumara, gorgonzola and walnut gnocchi. It’s called carb loading, get on board! 375 Karangahape Rd, City 
— Rosie Herdman, fashion assistant

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