Several All Blacks once called Dunedin's scarfie flats home, and the city's student quarter was an attraction yesterday for some of the current squad who brought tea and biscuits for tenants - and got a ribbing in return.
Otago Polytechnic student Olivia Macaulay, of Oamaru, said she was walking home to her Hyde St flat just before noon yesterday when she saw All Black first five-eighth Beauden Barrett in a group of men walking towards her.
She ran in to her all-female flat and yelled "the All Blacks are outside''.
One of her University of Otago flatmates, Sara Hutton, of Alexandra, "got real excited'' but Dani Gray, of Levin, was slower to react, having just woken up, and appeared wearing her dressing gown.
"She was like 'What's going on' and I yelled 'The All Blacks are here','' Miss Macaulay said.
All Black prop Joe Moody came to the door and offered to make the flatmates a cup of tea. The offer was accepted but the only cups in the flat were of the disposable party kind.
The flatmates shifted drying racks of clothes to make room for the All Blacks - Moody, Barrett, Dane Coles, Wyatt Crockett, Nathan Harris, Seta Tamanivalu, Tawera Kerr-Barlow and skipper Kieran Read.
Miss Hutton said some of the players commented on the cleanliness of the flat, when compared with an all-male flat they had seen earlier on their impromptu tour.
The tour of about 12 flats included a visit to 660 Castle St, where flatmates talked about the house fire in May.
Miss Hutton said the All Blacks were touring Hyde and Castle Sts because the players wanted to experience the "student lifestyle'', which they had missed out on by playing professional rugby.
Former All Blacks to live in Dunedin's student quarter include Anton Oliver, Arran Pene, Chris Laidlaw, David Kirk, Earle Kirton, Jamie Joseph, John Timu, Josh Kronfeld, Marc Ellis and Taine Randell.
The squad asked the flatmates about exams and for an explanation of the drinking game rules on the wall.
Miss Macaulay cheekily asked them if they planned to wait 60 minutes after kickoff to start playing at the third test against Wales at Forsyth Barr Stadium on Saturday, as they had in the second.
"They all laughed,'' Miss Hutton said.
Moody brought teabags, milk and chocolate biscuits with him and as he made the hot drinks, Miss Macaulay texted another flatmate, Olivia Brien, of Oamaru, who was studying nearby at the campus library, about the visit.
A return text by Miss Brien labelled Miss Macaulay a liar but a return photo of All Blacks drinking tea had Miss Brien sprinting home in time to see the players leaving.
"It was unreal,'' Miss Hutton said.