Friday, August 22, 2014

A Serendipitous Evening

Soul Bar and Restaurant at the Viaduct Harbour, Auckland

Last night my husband and I headed downtown to a range viewing after we shut up shop.  The supplier was set up at an apartment down by the Viaduct Harbour, so we planned to have dinner at one of the many lovely restaurants there afterwards.  Unfortunately once we had paid for our expensive parking we discovered we were there the wrong night due to a miscommunication.

Making lemonade out of lemons, we decided that now we had the entire evening to dine, rather than a quick late bite.  Yay!  I had in my mind that I wanted us to go to a luxurious place that the wealthy dine at.  In the past we’d go to a pub and have that kind of food, but last night I wanted to go beyond that with an exquisite experience.

Of course exquisite experiences often come with exquisite price tags, but if you’re not drinking the entire bar and only having one or two courses, it’s manageable.  And we hardly ever go out for dinner so one evening isn’t going to break us.

We strolled along the cobblestones and had a look at a few menus but it wasn’t until we got to Soul (photo above), that I thought ‘here’s where I want to eat tonight’.  Soul is a long-established and well-known bar and restaurant that is one of the places to see and be seen.  It was certainly good enough for Beyoncé and Jay-Z when they visited Auckland.  And of course it's right on the waterfront, so the launches and yachts are right there.

Perusing the menu before we went in, we saw that August is Restaurant Month in Auckland, and Soul were offering a three-course menu for roughly the same price as a main course, with two wine matches for the price of one of their normal wines by the glass.  What fortuitous timing for us!  The restaurant wasn’t full at all when we went inside but we were lucky enough to be offered one of the last tables and before too long every table was occupied.

I had tonic water in a flute and my darling husband was thrilled with the wine matches.  Need I add that our three courses each were glorious.  Such symphonies of flavour and I was so glad I decided to elevate our dining experience.  Soul is consistently opulent, elegant and a little bit sexy too, so we left a few hours later with an experience for the soul (pun not intended).

I’m thrilled the Universe sent us out for dinner with our incorrect shoe-purchasing appointment.  An evening of casually luxurious fine dining turned out to be just what we needed (when would it ever not be though)!  Having a think about it, my lessons from last night are:

- Don’t be grumpy when plans go wrong, look for the silver lining
- Enjoy going somewhere different to normal
- Drink in the surroundings around you as much as the food and drink in front of you
- Take that luxurious feeling home and make it last as long as possible by copying some of their special touches that you notice (elegant table settings, stylish décor, bright, smartly-dressed wait-staff and beautiful bathrooms with scented flowing soap and little stacks of paper towels to dry your hands were just a few I noticed)

Have you been out anywhere heavenly lately?  Please share - I’d love to visit there virtually!


  1. What a lovely place! I am looking forward to dining out tonight, but we don't have an ocean harbor to sit beside. But we do have the Erie Canal and a little place where pleasure boats dock in the summer. It actually is a "fine dining" restaurant in a casual dockside setting. Hope the weather holds so we can sit on the patio instead of inside.

  2. Your evening sounds lovely and even better that it was so spontaneous.

  3. Those exquisite moments of beauty and refinement make our spirits soar. Thanks so much for sharing yours with us.

    I came across this delightful place online, Chateau Montebello, in Montebello, Quebec, Canada. I'd love to spend a relaxing week there. Enjoy a virtual visit.

    Your blog is sheer delight.

    Have a wonderful weekend.
    Honey Bee

  4. I'm so glad you found a nice place to dine Fiona and you're right that it's wise to go with the flow. :) Like you, we prefer to eat out less often, but when we do, go somewhere very nice for the experience of it all. (We never eat fast food out. Ever.) We just dined at a luxury resort in San Diego; come on over to my blog and visit virtually as you suggested. Blessings for a beautiful New Zealand day!


Merci for your comment. Wishing you a chic day!

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