Savouring difference

Alex Giminez, co-owner of Patagonia Chocolates and now Savoury Corner, with the new cafe's pizza oven. Photo by Christina McDonald.
Alex Giminez, co-owner of Patagonia Chocolates and now Savoury Corner, with the new cafe's pizza oven. Photo by Christina McDonald.
A manual slicer is just one piece of evidence for a fondness of ''how things used to be made''.

The slicer sits in clear view near the counter at Savoury Corner, which is Queenstown Airport's newest cafe, and cafe co-owner Alex Giminez can often be found nearby.

''We love the transparency and the interaction between the [customer] and the people making the food,'' Mr Giminez said, adding that he enjoyed educating people about what ''good coffee'' should taste like.

He and wife Lorena are known for their Patagonia Chocolates businesses in Queenstown, Arrowtown and Wanaka, but for Mr Giminez, the airport was a chance to ''get back to what I used to do'' with the savoury side of food.

Since 2009, Patagonia Chocolates had a small island-style stall selling ice cream, hot drinks and chocolates at the airport and the name Savoury Corner refers the new layout of having the business' established food - chocolates - at one end and new savoury food at the other.

Mr Giminez is a chef at heart and the airport venture is a chance to get ''outside of the box'' when put in context with his shops.

The new cafe involved ''a lot of local people'', from furniture-makers to architects, which fits with a Patagonia philosophy: ''Something that we say all the time is let's get back to the future''.