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If, like us, brunches or long lunches are your thing – we may have found your new favourite hangout. The Botanist is in the heart of Auckland city in the Cityworks Depot offering a café, bar and florist all in one eclectic, industrial urban chic package. We went along one chilly Saturday morning and were happy to escape out of the cold and into the bright, relaxed and cosy surrounds.

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The generous brunch menu is available all day on weekends and until 2pm weekdays. It has a great mix of sweet breakfast style dishes such as the Acai Bowl and Salted caramel banana porridge as well as lunch style savouries like the squid and chorizo salad or pork and lamb meatballs. The gourmet sandwich is definitely making a comeback here in style… which we were excited to try…

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Savoury

We admit that Reuben Sammies aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but we can’t resist the combination of sour sauerkraut with slightly salty pastrami topped off with cheese. Our expectations couldn’t prepare us for the work of art that was delivered to our table – crispy, thick sourdough with thick cut “Juke Joint” pastrami, pickle, sauerkraut, gruyere and aioli… delicious. Every mouthful was creamy yet smoky, lifted by the tangy flavour of the pickle and sauerkraut. Matched with Matua Marlborough Pinot Gris refreshed the palate - the tart flavours in the Reuben allowing the honeysuckle characters in the wine to really shine. We’ll be ordering this beauty again!

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Sweet

For something really different, these gingerbread waffles with roast pumpkin buttermilk rum caramel are sweet (but not too sweet), spicy and totally moreish. The crispy waffles are topped with a silky, creamy pumpkin puree and maple syrup. The flavour would be best described as pumpkin pie – cinnamon and ginger making this a perfect winter or spring brunch option. Matched with a lunchtime glass of Pinot Gris, the Gris becomes a refreshing, crisp drop between bites… don’t mind if we do!

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The Botanist

City Works Depot

13/90 Wellesley St W

Auckland

Ph. (09) 308 9494

botanist.co.nz

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Wine Matches

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Matua Marlborough Pinot Gris

This wine is aromatic, with intense baked pear and spiced quince on the nose. The palate is deliciously concentrated and fresh with just a touch of perfumed sweetness. Honeysuckle flavours are elevated by The Botanist’s gourmet Reuben Sandwich, while crisp, citrus fruits are brought out with the Gingerbread Waffles.

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