Casita Miro is one of three places on Waiheke we’ve been to loads and it speaks to us. It says several things:
- Come hither.
- Where DID you get that lovely hat? It’s sooo you!
- Have some of this pie-ella. It’s pie, you English like pie, right?
- Did you know ‘Charlie Big Potato’ was written right here on our hill?*
- No, madam, that’s technically illegal in almost all countries, even Australia.
Also, as we popped our Waiheke cherry here about 18 months ago, it also directly asks, a la Charley Bliss, “Am I the best, or just the first person to say yes?”. Yes, OK, you were the first person to say yes, you tarts … and, maybe, just maybe we’ve had our head turned.
It’s not you, Miro, it’s us, we’ve changed, we’re mentally weak, easily led, we’ve been seeing someone else … Poderi Crisci has a sexy ankle, gives good veg and your delicate pâté, fluffy croqetas and luscious paella have become … NO, WAIT, hang on, FLUFFY CROQETAS! CHICKEN LIVER PATE! PAELLA! We want you back, please take us back, a table for two next to the floor-to-ceiling window overlooking the vineyard and the Hauraki Gulf …
Phew, that was close, we are forgiven, they took us back. As they should, mind, we’ve taken all our visitors there so surely we deserve some discount or maybe a free bottle of wine, or perhaps a complimentary starter? Or maybe a complementary starter? What about a gratis dessert wine? Possibly a slice or two of Spanish hams? A few olives? No? MmmmmOK.
Really, Casita Miro is the best place on the island. Well, you know, it’s our best place on the island. Ticks all boxes, except this one:
CASITO MIRO IS STAGGERING DISTANCE FROM OUR HOUSE ❌
Casita Miro was also used, shamelessly, as bait to lure us not only to this god-forsaken sub-tropical hovel** of an island but to New Zealand itself. But for Miro we never would have come***.
It’s not your poncy vinoteca, it’s not as cheap as chips and, in theory, it doesn’t really have any right to be good at doing Spanish food and wine – because it is not in Spain. It’s also not one of the easier places to get to if you’re plastered, or intending to get plastered, although it is not as awkward as Crisci or Man O’War. But it is this >>>>
And it’s our favourite place on the island because of Cristian Hossack’s excellent tapas-y food in a great big, glass fronted barn that has a sun-facing hill on which you can lie and chill the day away.
Tapas. Not something the antipodes do very well – which is(n’t really that) odd because Waiheke is the antipode of Spain, specifically between Malaga and Jerez, you know? Educational. Would Miro stand up to scrutiny in the global perspective? Maybe. Maybe not. It’s not San Sebastián. It’s not Barrica. But it’s very, very good, it’s a little bit of vida on Waiheke.
Facilitating a move to New Zealand, taking the parents out, meeting friends, showing off to ‘Strayan visitors. You even get some Estrella, although you wouldn’t be foolish enough to put lager in that glass, would you? A local dark ale (Wild), a local(ish) pale (Hallertau) or an NZ pilsner (Panhead) is in order, in the absence of Moritz Epidor.
Nice tablecloths too. Linen is very important in a restaurant, don’t you think? None of this bare wood and scarred school furniture. Have some fucking respect. You wouldn’t get this linen in Mudbrick or Cable Bay, where the eager tourists are told to flock and gawp at the (admittedly fine) view of the Auckland skyline.
Some call it gazpacho with a soupcon of prawn salsa resting on its shoulder. Some call it cold tomato soup with fish bits? Gazpacho.
Croqetas. With a gnarly mix of potato and goats cheese, although these ones are the snapper variant with sofrito. These are dancing balls, they make you dance. Honestly. Then you see pirates. Did I mention we partied at their harvest festival? Well, yeah, dancing and that. And 8 Foot Felix live in front of our greedy little faces.
Paella. A rice dish from Valencia. Not Spain. But, whatever and wherever, no chorizo (Jamie Oliver, tsk). Fish, yes. Probably. Chicken, yup, but not here. Snapper, prawn, squid. Paella de marisco.
And then churros. Of course churros.
Casita Miro, we will never leave you again, we will never cheat on you with, for example, Passage Rock, Tantalus or Peacock Sky … definitely. But we might have a little cuddle with Goldie or cast an eye at Kennedy Point’s shapely thigh, just, because, you know, we can actually stagger home from theirs.
You know what though, Miro doesn’t do a single slice of lomo, not a sniff of cured pork loin … proof you cannot have everything and there’s no point seeking perfection. But there’s no harm in HINTING STRONGLY TO THE OWNERS THAT THEY SHOULD GET SOME LOMO IN. Please.
Casita Miro, 3 Brown Road, Waiheke Island. Woof!
*Not true, it was actually Terrorvision’s ‘Tequila’ that was written here.****
****Also not true, it was actually Mansun’s epic … oh, never mind.