Valentines buffet dining establishments were a Kiwi organization, of sorts. Over the years, the variety of operating all-you-can-eat Valentines venues– once 12– has been decreased to a simple 4 shops.
All of them are in the North Island. Two are in Auckland– Manukau and North Coast, respectively– the others in Rotorua and Hamilton. But a brand-new shop is earmarked to open later on this year in Christchurch– signalling a possible brand-new era of the precious and bemoaned chain franchise which fizzled out in spectacular fashion.
Accounts administrator Margaret Parkin, 52, used to check out Valentines in Napier, and was a regular client also at the shop in the Lower Hutt suburban area of Petone. The latter had breathtaking views of Wellington Harbour on The Esplanade. Later on, it relocated to Jackson St.
” You might get fresh oysters for the night dinner, and the offerings were very well prepared, [they] looked tasty on presentation and taste. The environment resembled homely with a touch of high-end, and the view when on The Esplanade was unique.”
Valentines, she states, was “always the popular option”with her household. “There were times when you were not able to get
in because it was reserved out. Lunch break was constantly hectic.” Then, she says, the standards began to slip. Salads ended up being”dull” and splashed in mayo, meats were “low-cost cuts”, overcooked. Parkin said that the meats were so unsavory that they appeared as if they ‘d been delegated rest in hot water.
After the relocate to Jackson St, Parkin believed the company might “hit that high note once again”, to no joy.”It failed as a pancake.