Besides sending a boat and crew to the America's Cup, New Zealand has also sent some food and drink. Waiheke Island Yacht Club is a popup restaurant housed in Pier 29. The cocktail menu looked interesting, so we thought we'd pop over and try some drinks. The interior is arresting; the cavernous space within the warehouse-like pier is softened with lots of wood and lambskin. Take a look:
The open kitchen makes it a more interesting restaurant experience. It gets drafty in the warehouse, but the heat lamps (see photo below) help keep things toasty.
As a vegetarian, I'm not sure how I feel about this seat. Poor lamb:
It's not loud inside, and there's ample space. Compared to some of the, erm, cozier restaurants in San Francisco, it's a nice change of pace:
Here's the menu:
We tried three of the cocktails. First, the Aviation: Gin, maraschino, yuzu, violet. It's a touch on the sweeter side, but not too much so. It's free-strained, so there's some ice on top, but I don't think that's the end of the world. The violet floats to the bottom, which makes this drink visually stunning:
Beached As: 42 Below Passionfruit (vodka), blood orange, pomegranate, passionfruit and yuzu foam. The yuzu foam alone makes this drink worth ordering, it's really fantastic. Rich, tropical, and luxurious. Not to mention very pretty:
Yeah Nah: Monkey Shoulder Whiskey, Creme Yvette, PX Sherry, Smoked Plum. I think I enjoyed this drink most of all because it suits my palate nicely. The Monkey Shoulder is rather peaty, and this matches beautifully with smoked plum. The sherry adds some nice depth.
There's also a New Zealand beer on tap called Moa:
I loved this beer. The Moa Pale Ale is floral, yeasty, and nicely bitter. The Special Reserve is a Belgian style ale. It's rich on the tongue, with a floral nose and slightly citrusy taste. It's still bitter, hoppy, and delicious.
Restaurant seats at 11am for lunch, and between 5-10pm for dinner. Open every day.
Bar is from 11am to 2am, every day.