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Elliott Stables/El Faro

Food court and upmarket don’t usually feature in the same sentence, at least not in Sydney’s Chinatown or Cabramatta. Certain “food halls” have popped up that are starting to buck the trend but by and large remain food-court-like. Don’t get me wrong, the food is delicious and generally less expensive and less formal than similar restaurants but… they are still food courts. I love the sort of food court where amazing food abounds for less than $10 per meal and dirty and delicious happily co-exist.

However Elliott Stables in Auckland’s CBD has not only taken great food stalls but has set them in a really stylish and upmarket food court inside restored horse stables. I’ll let the pictures do the speaking however when we came it was a public holiday and most of the stalls were closed and the place was like a ghost-town. It is apparently normally very difficult to get a table here (like many other food courts) so we were kind of glad in that regard and thankfully El Faro our planned destination was open that day.

You can either eat inside a small part of your vendor’s booth/restaurant or pick any table you like and have entrees from one stall, mains from another and deserts from yet another – it’s a great concept and includes table service and proper cutlery unlike almost all other food courts that I’ve been to. Shame so many other stalls were shut…

The food at El Faro was fantastic and satisfied a niggling tapas craving I had been having for quite some time as we travelled through New Zealand. In Queenstown there were a few tapas places but they were more bar food places whereas this seemed like a proper restaurant. Well, as proper as you can get inside horse stables.

At El Faro, Elliott Stables, Auckland, New Zealand

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