I was lucky enough to taste test the newest dining spot in The Crossing last night and what an experience it was! From the moment you step into the bar on Level One of the ‘Bubble’ building, you feel a sense of seaside calm. The beautiful teal interior reflects the ocean and pairs perfectly with the steel bubbles that surround the building, the brass table tops and featured light fittings. With mermaid like tiles complimenting the seafood theme you really get the feeling the sea has met the city.

Our first order of business was to choose from the extensive drinks list covering a plethora of local, national and international wines and beers, not to mention the long list of cocktails. The bar on level one has a relaxed feel with comfortable booths that cater for small or large groups.  With a Rubino in hand (orange infused gin, rosemary bitters and sweet vermouth) we headed up to the Bistro on level two.

There was a satisfying hum of activity throughout the fully booked restaurant on Level Two and the open kitchen gave us an insight into the exacting standards owner and head chef Simon Levy demands of his team. The Hali menu changes regularly in order to ensure that the produce is fresh and seasonal, so you can expect something new each time you visit. What doesn’t change is Simon’s obvious love of all things seafood – dishes range from whole crayfish to a tasty snapper with seasonal vegetables. My meal consisted of a crayfish ravioli in seafood bisque starter, blue warehou and clams with cucumber ketchup as a main and lemon curd, elderflower blueberries and whipped white chocolate for dessert. Each and every dish was presented beautifully and the flavours packed onto the plate was spectacular. I can hear a few mutters from the non-seafood loving community – don’t worry, there is also steak and vegetarian options on the menu as well.

Our first experience at Hali was one to remember and I’m already looking forward to our next one – even if it is just for sneaky Friday cocktails!

For more information, menus and bookings visit hali.nz. Or simply stop in when you are next in The Crossing, no bookings required for the level one bar.

Hali bar and bistro, level one and two above Coffee Culture in The Crossing.