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A new twist to breakfast

Tom O'Leary Dec 12
new twist to breakfast

Restaurateur Francesca Voza is giving one of Christchurch’s old favourite eateries a brand new lease on life and with an exciting culinary twist.

Handpicking the beautifully restored building on Oxford Terrace, once home to Caffé Roma, Francesca could not have made a more perfect choice for the location of her new breakfast and brunch bistro; Miro.

When Francesca and her husband James signed the lease for the building 18 months ago, Francesca knew of Caffé Roma’s reputation amongst the breakfast and brunch crowd and that she had “big shoes to fill”.

“We knew that we wanted to do a breakfast and brunch place and we knew that caffé Roma had such a big following,” says Francesca. “We just hoped we could get some of those customers to come back and give us a try.”

Well known as an energised driving force behind Francesca’s Italian restaurants and pizzerias located in Christchurch, Wanaka, Timaru and Dunedin, Francesca’s passion is all about the customer experience from the service to the food to the visual display of the cooking process.

Francesca explains that Miro will offer a more sophisticated breakfast/brunch experience without being pretentious or priced beyond what diners would normally expect to pay for good breakfast/ brunch fare.

“We want to provide super attentive service and create an experience from the time you come in. “We don’t want it to be like a café when you come in for a quick bite and go.

“We’re trying to provide an evening dinner style service but at breakfast time. We even have a little breakfast cocktail menu. So, if you want to come in for a lovely brunch by the fire side we have a lovely cocktail menu to go with it.”

She says the breakfast/brunch menu will have quite a few of the classics on it but with a bit of a spin on things.

A key part of the experience will be the open kitchen where diners are privy to the ‘performance of cooking’ and central to that will be the very large and locally handcrafted charcoal grill where chefs flame cuts of prime meat, creating irresistible and inviting cooking aromas.

“I’m a big fan of an open kitchen and cooking with fire-hence the charcoal grill.

“One of the main twists is that the majority of our food will be cooked over charcoal. “We’re doing a beautiful full breakfast and we’re making our own sausages cooked over the grill in front of people.”

Francesca says that the owners of the building have done an amazing job restoring it to its former glory, and she has utilised many of the old familiar features including two open fireplaces.

Miro will be one of only a very few inner city businesses that have permits for open fires.

“We’ve redone all the wood panelling that was on the walls and the existing wooden floor has been refurbished. “So it has all been beautifully restored. “The look that we’ve gone for is quite natural – lots of wood and greenery to make it relaxing and natural – that’s the vibe we’re going for.”

Francesca’s goal is to keep all produce as local as possible, using fresh seasonal produce.

Making as much use of the grill as possible, there will be lots of beautiful cuts of meat with a wide choice of accompanying sides.

Already familiar with many of the front of house, chefs and wait staff who will bring the restaurant energy to life, through past work in her other restaurants, Francesca is confident that customers will be welcomed and provided with a very special experience.

“My head chef is Rafael—he is from Brazil and loves cooking meat over the flame – perfect.”

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