This week’s small pleasures #151

This week’s small pleasures is coming to you on a Sunday again, not because I am travelling but because I am going to a Wellington on a Plate event. More on that in the next post hopefully! Meanwhile, let’s look back on the week.

First up, this week’s feast as part of the Dine Wellington part of Wellington on a Plate was at Capitol. A feast it most certainly was, starting with pork and pāua rillettes with a dandelion salsa, followed by a venison and tuatua pie all rounded off with a poached feijoa and local honey Eaton Mess. Pāua and tuatua are both shellfish, so quite different to the usual mix, though the pie I guess could be a modern Kiwi take on the traditional beef and oyster pie. What was very unusual was that the tuatua were still in their shells, hidden beneath the pastry: still good if a bit of a surprise.

Side note: Remember Small Pleasures post #144 when we went to Hiakai? Well, check out Monique Fiso with Gordon Ramsay if you have a channel where you can access it (we watched it on Discovery here in New Zealand).

A very tasty start to the meal
And a very good pie!

It was a busy week, what with travel up to Hawke’s Bay on Monday and Tuesday, but the weekend proved nice and relaxing, with an afternoon of tea, the sofa and a book due to the rain on Saturday afternoon, my usual stop at Squirrel for a toast treat before Pilates in the morning, and catching up with friends I hadn’t seen for ages for brunch on Sunday. Oh yes and the All Blacks retained the Bledisloe Cup beating The Wallabies 36-0.

Saturday morning

Saturday evening saw another small pleasure: the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s latest evening of dance Bold Moves, four quite different pieces that blended well together. The evening began with Balanchine’s Serenade, which I had seen before but not for a few years. It is a great opening piece for an evening like this, and almost hard to believe it is 85 years old. Next up was the pas de deux from Flames of Paris, a work choreographed by Vasily Vainomen in 1932. This was beautifully danced by Mayu Tanigaito and Laurynas Vejalis. The third piece was Stand to Reason choreographed by Andrea Schermoly and first performed by the RNZB in 2018 as part of the Strength and Grace season that celebrated the 125th anniversary of New Zealand granting women the right to vote. I liked it then and liked it now. The final piece was Artifact II by William Forsythe from 1984 which I just loved, and which I think I have seen before, and am now going to spend days trying to discover if my hunches are right. I have seen so many things over many years….

Bold Moves

After brunch on Sunday, I walked over to Civic Square and popped into the City Gallery to see the new exhibitions Eavesdropping, art works on the contemporary sonic world (some fascinating pieces) and a retrospective exhibition of the artist Theo Schoon,

Sunday in Wellington
Sculptures by Theo Schoon

And that’s it for this week. What were your small pleasures?

Thanks to Mani over at A New Life Wandering for the original idea.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram@thistleandkiwis.  As for Twitter….am totally inactive these days.  If you want to get in touch, email me on


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