Kia Orana,,,thought I'd better continue the island update before it all becomes a distant memory though after day one at work I feel I am still retaining a little of that relaxed and refreshed feeling. The second night in Raro we managed to secure a table at Stefano's post bubbles and oat and beer - local Matutu beer - bread with some tasty pesto and hummus all picked up at the local markets.
Stefano's is a delectable little Italian restaurant run by Roberta and Stefano who moved out from Milan in 2000. Also only a moment or two stroll from our resort. It is a simple menu with several bruschetta's on offer for an entree. The traditional crispy bread rubbed with garlic and olive oil and topped with tomatoes and herbs. We opted for the original tomatoes and herbs but also variations with olives, cheese and salami on the menu. Really shows how simple flavours can really sing...yum!
For mains it is pasta, all freshly made on site. We had the pasta saporita - fresh spaghetti with bacon, chili, white wine, garlic in a light tomato sauce topped off with a little Parmesan and ravioli con panne e funghi - fresh ravioli with a mushroom and cream sauce. The mushroom ravioli was really delicious. After a bit of a breather we just had to try the tiramisu and it was worth it! A real pick me up and gave us the energy to manage a cocktail back at the resort for moonlight happy hour.
Sunday dawned with more blue skies and sunshine and was a designated day of pure relaxing 0 heaven and felt like such an indulgent luxury. So post breakfast we ensconced ourselves on the beach with books and magazines galore. Lunch was from a fantastic little deli that we came across at the market...having seen the delights on offer we just couldn't resist a visit to Deli Foods. See for yourself! We opted for their pizza breads, salad and a couple of muffins which added up to a great beach side picnic.
Monday - another day in paradise and off on a lagoon cruise with Captain Tama - our two guides Captain Fantastic and Captain Awesome made it a memorable and hilarious day out on the lagoon. A little snorkeling, colourful tropical fish and giant clams followed by fresh coconut for morning tea. Then it was off to a tiny island just off Muri Beach for a BBQ lunch and entertainment. While the crew cooked up a freshly caught feast there was time for a little more lazing in the sun. Lunch was BBQ wahoo, freshly caught that morning,with BBQ banana, onions, coleslaw and potato salad - simple but yumm! Seconds were definitely in order.
A little light entertainment post lunch was hilarious with a lesson on how to tie sarongs...there are a million and one ways, coconut husking and some island ukulele playing in the background to round out the island vibe.
After a bit of an afternoon siesta it was beer battered fish and chips Raro style with an apple slaw, island fries (local maniota, taro and kumura - seriously good - crisp and slightly sweet) and coriander and lime aioli with the beautiful Muri beach to look at. So picturesque - we certainly never tired of that spectacular view, and the fish and chips were pretty good too.