Firm, scooped ice cream in a cone is a Kiwi institution and is sold all over, but to taste some of the best head for a good supermarket and buy Kapiti and Kohu Road, both in numerous delicious flavours including the indulgent hokey pokey – vanilla ice cream riddled with chunks of honeycomb toffee.
Jams and preserves
Artisans sell preserves at various farmers’ markets but supermarket brands Anathoth and Te Horo are amazingly flavoursome at modest prices.
Bland cheddar is the de facto national standard, but New Zealand now makes a wide range of delicious cheeses, with the Kapiti brand widely available. Their super-rich Kikorangi blue is particularly good. Look out, too, for smaller producers such as Whitestone, Meyer and Puhoi Valley.
Shun the mainstream stuff and zero in on small-batch craft brews such as: Auckland’s Epic; Croucher from Rotorua; McCashin’s, from Stoke, near Nelson; Emerson’s from Dunedin; and the deep south’s Invercargill Brewery. Most are available in bottle stores and good supermarkets.