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Monsoon Poon

A few times this semester, a group of us has gone out to dinner to explore some of the nicer places to eat in Wellington.  Now, when I say nice, I don’t mean super fancy, but nicer than the typical college student fare.  We try and stay in the $20-$30 dinner range (about $15-$25 back in the US).

Back on the North Island trip when I stayed the night at the YHA hostel in Taupo, a British couple was cooking chicken curry and Naan bread while I was cooking my dinner and it smelled amazing.  Since then, I’ve been craving Indian food like none other.  So, we decided to try Monsoon Poon, an Indian/Southeast Asian restaraunt that Lena found online.

Taken off their website

Looking on their website, you can tell instantly that it’s a bit playful, with the top of their menu printed with the phrase, “You hungry, we cook no.  Yes?” mocking Engrish.  When we got there, it was obvious that it wasn’t a traditional Asian restaraunt.  It seemed almost American in the way the decoration was overdone, trying to be creative but a little too obviously so.  It was a pretty big restaraunt, about the size of a TGI Friday’s (which is huge here).  Oh, and they were playing techno music.  Weird mix.

I ended up ordering the Chicken Tandoori Duo, chicken in tikka and korma spices, along with Garlic Naan and steamed rice.  The chicken was fantastic and just enough to fill me up, though I wasn’t quite as impressed with the Naan.  Though it was huge, it just didn’t have the taste I was hoping for.

John got a beefy dish that had a sweet flavor I couldn’t place.  Lena was hoping to order duck (since she’s never tried it), but, after finding out that it would be too spicy for her tastes, ordered a chicken and prawn dish called “Phoenix and Dragon.”  As the name might imply, it was more Asian than Indian and was a simple sweet and sour sauce–she wasn’t very impressed.

Regardless, dinner was a great success and we all left satisfied but craving something sweet.  We went into the Reading Theatre food court in search of dessert.  (Many movie theatres in New Zealand have large shopping centers inside them, almost like a mini-mall.  And when I say “many move theatres,” I’m basing that off of this one and the IMAX in Auckland, the only two I’ve ever seen.)  We found Wendy’s Supa Sundaes, a small ice cream shop (not to be confused with the red headed girl from the US).  This is the only stand-alone ice cream shop I’ve seen in Wellington, though, to be fair, I haven’t looked that hard.

As soon as we walked up, the girl behind the counter had three tasting spoons full of caramel-butterscotch-brownie ice cream.  It was very tasty (along with the other flavors I tasted).  I ended up ordering a two scoop, but got talked into topping up to three scoops for 60 cents.  My flavors were: caramel-butterscotch-brownie, Bailey’s Scorched Almond, and Hokey Pokey (a New Zealand favorite: vanilla ice cream with bits of sponge toffee).

I was so stuffed by the end of the night that I ended up with a cramp in my side trying to walk the stairs back up to my place.  That’s how you know it was a good night.

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