The Imperium Luxury Collection group executive chef Trent Watson is making his mark on new seasonal dishes for Eichardt’s, The Grille and No5 Church Lane.
Drawing on his vast culinary experience with five-star catering companies, premium hotels and restaurants as well as stints touring with rock musicians such as the Foo Fighters, Pearl Jam and Lady Gaga, Trent’s focus is on presenting flawless food and wine experiences across the venues.
“I love the old style luxury at Eichardt’s Private Hotel,” he says. “The history of the building is impressive and the stories are remarkable. To match this subdued luxury we are developing tapas style sharing plates to complement the exceptional cocktails served by our talented team in Eichardt’s bar. Our approach is local and seasonal is always best and the dishes are fresh simple flavour profiles showcasing the regions produce and supporting local farmers.”
“We are also working on creative and innovative private dining experiences for the high-end travel market including those staying in Eichardt’s Penthouse which is exciting.”
The Grille is known for its effortless restaurant quality which is reflected in a menu which Trent says highlights the best of seasonal produce.
“We have introduced a freshly stylised, elegant menu at The Grille that encourages diners to relax and take in the warmth, sunshine and views overlooking Lake Whakatipu. Our new rotating butcher’s board offers a hand-picked selection of the best local and international products including interesting cuts of meat and seafood.”
“The options are as varied as wild shot venison from the West Coast, grass-fed wagyu from Gisborne, duck from the Canterbury region, and grain-fed Savannah eye fillet on the bone from Taranaki.”
“The menu offers two outstanding sharing options for two or three people — the Merino lamb shoulder is marinated in rosemary and garlic then slow roasted for five hours while the one kilogram Canterbury Savannah Op Rib is served on the bone.”
Later this year The Imperium Luxury Collection will re-open the No5 Church Lane bar and restaurant at The Spire Hotel which has been closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“No5 Church Lane offers the chance for us to do something slightly more left field and showcase traditional cuisine with a twist that we are very much looking forward to,” he says.
“Leading and curating The Imperium Luxury Collection hospitality experiences is a chef’s dream come true and I am relishing the opportunity and challenge of creating unique elevated dining across each venue.”