Recap on our Wintery Weekend in Marlborough
Marlborough. I'm sure lots of you have heard amazing things, but how many of you have actually BEEN there? Obviously this excludes those of you that are from there... Art and I spent a beautiful wintery weekend in Blenheim and the surrounding Marlborough area, and I seriously fell in love. The people, the scenery, and of course the food! Here's a recap of our little get away.
We flew in to Blenheim on Friday evening, and checked in to the Quality Hotel Marlborough. It's a really gorgeous, inviting spot. We were welcomed very warmly by Jay Jay at the front desk who showed us to our room. We were greeted with a delish cheese platter and a bottle of bubbles! Obviously we got stuck in straight away, it would be rude not to. That cheese platter will stay in my dreams for a while yet I think... I mean, there was passion fruit on there! So we spent a bit of time, just chomping our way through the cheese and wine before we headed out for dinner.
Dinner was next level. We ended up going to a place called Arbour Dining, and it was an experience and a half I tell ya! We decided to go for the 'Prep Bench' experience. It's where you're right in amongst the chefs as they are cooking your food. I've eaten some pretty good food over the years, and this was definitely up there! Brad and Ajosh (the chefs) said they would just keep handing out plates until we got full... I think they underestimated me, because if there's one thing I can do, it's eat. We rolled out of the restaurant feeling extremely full, and content. The staff and food were amazing, and I can't wait to go back.
It's probably a good thing that we had a massive food injection that night, as we had a big day of ADVENTURING on the Saturday. We got up at sparrows fart, put on our thermals, and made our way to Picton to catch the ferry to the start of our hike through the Queen Charlotte Sounds. The boat ride was incredible. I was seriously blown away by the beauty of the Sounds... And all so close to home! We are so incredibly lucky to live in NZ. There's everything you could ever want, and best of all - no Trump. The hike was about 16km, and just stunning. Next time I head down, I want to do the full 3 days, and stay at cuuuute accommodation along the way. We finished the hike at Furnaux Lodge for a well earned beer, bowl of fries, and slice of banana cake... I mean how could we pass that up?!
On the Sunday, we got really in to the whole "weekend away" thing, and decided to not set an alarm and have a bit of a sleep in. We woke up in our hotel room at Quality Hotel Marlborough, and ordered pancakes and eggs benny right to our bed. Dreamy. The chef who brought it to us was probably one of the sweetest people I've ever met!!! She had a good yarn to us, and told us of a few things around town to check out. We spent the day driving around and exploring the rest of Blenheim, and stopping for wine and pizza at Giesen Vineyard. We were on our way back to the hotel to relax until dinner, until I saw a recommendation from someone on social media of a CHOCOLATE factory?! I told Art to change direction immediately, as we couldn't leave Blenheim without paying a visit to the chocolate factory. We ended up coming away with some bloody heavenly brittle type of situation. I won't lie, it was a whole new level of deliciousness. You're probably reading what we ate over the weekend, and thinking "That's not paleo?!?" and the answer is no, it most certainly wasn't, but we all need a bit of balance in our lives right? Art and I are back home now, back in to routine, and neither of us have any regrets!
If you're thinking of visiting the Marlborough region, my only advice would be to DO IT! I would really recommend Quality Hotel Marlborough (http://www.choicehotels.co.nz/en/quality-hotel-marlborough-blenheim-hotel-nz161) where we stayed, the staff go above and beyond, and made our stay really memorable (oh, and request a room with a spa bath, you won't regret it).