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All Posts in Hospitality

June 29, 2024 - No Comments!

Thrice as nice: Bon Pinard opens on Shore

Francophiles and North Shore locals are in for a très bien treat with the opening of Bon Pinard, a new French wine bar in Birkenhead.

Husband-and-wife team Jordan and Sarah Macdonald are behind the new opening, with the couple's other hospo babies Duo and Osteria Uno just a couple of doors down on historic Hinemoa Street.

With the name Bon Pinard translating to ‘good wine’ in French slang, the focus here is on small snack-style plates, French-inspired cocktails and a mostly French, European and New Zealand wine list.

Perfect for an after-work aperitif or a leisurely afternoon or evening with friends, it’s also the ideal spot at which to savour a crisp white burgundy or a big Central Otago red before moving on to a delightful dinner next door.

For more info head to

January 31, 2024 - No Comments!

Best summer for burger lovers

Get ready for the best summer ever burger lovers, with the inaugural Burger Nation 2024 set to kick off this week.

Celebrating the best burgers that Aotearoa has to offer, the month-long showcase sees more than 250 eateries around the country serving up their own unique take on this most humble of culinary heroes. And with organisers out to reclaim the essence of what makes a great burger, the celebration sees everyone from classic takeaway joints, to beach-side food trucks and city bistros taking part.

December 8, 2023 - No Comments!

Bar Albert’s enticing new cocktail menu

Perched high above the city centre, Auckland’s premier luxury bar destination Bar Albert has a new summer offering.

Already the summit of sophistication with world-class drinks, sky-high glamour and the best views over Tāmaki Makaurau, the sophisticated speakeasy-inspired bar has unveiled a tantalizing new cocktail menu, whisky tastings and new Sunset Sessions, making it the place to be for the season ahead.

Bringing an international flair to the crafting of the bar’s exceptional drinks, master mixologist and Bar Manager Johan Cabrera - with an extensive bar background both here and in France - says the new menu is a fusion of local and global flavours, with a focus on independent small batch producers and locally sourced, fresh ingredients.

October 25, 2023 - No Comments!

Numero Uno in Birkenhead

Already blessed with a strong line-up of eateries, Birkenhead locals now have a new casual Italian at which to satisfy their pasta and vino cravings.

Osteria Uno opens tomorrow on historic Hinemoa Street. Beside bustling café and bistro Duo, fans will recognise some familiar faces, with Duo owners Jordan and Sarah Macdonald taking over the adjacent space for their latest venture.

Open five nights a week and seating 40 inside and 10 more out front, Osteria Uno aims for elevated but approachable Italian. The menu is simple and seasonal, with handmade pasta as the star of the show.

July 11, 2023 - No Comments!

Sober curious?

Pioneering a category of drinks to solve the ‘what to drink when you’re not drinking’ dilemma, Seedlip is served in some of the world’s – and New Zealand’s – best cocktail bars and can be bought locally at supermarkets and at Smith & Caugheys, Farro Fresh, Glengarry and

Here’s where to find some of the most sensational Seedlip cocktails on offer around Auckland this winter.

June 21, 2023 - No Comments!

Surf, Turf and Smoke, Monsieur!

Mount Maunganui is home to the country’s tastiest toasted sandwich, with Freeport with Cleaver & Co taking top honours in the Great NZ Toastie Takeover 2023.

Talented young chef Brooke Moore has won the hotly contested title - and snagged bragging rights for the North for the second time only in the competition’s history - with her impressive creation Surf, Turf & Smoke, Monsieur!

A standout for competition judges, Moore’s winning toastie featured housemade smoked lamb pastrami, smoked prawns, mozzarella, smoked cheddar sauce and McClure's Sweet & Spicy Pickles, sandwiched between locally-made BreadHead miso tahini sourdough and served with smoked aioli and pickle juice gel.

April 19, 2023 - No Comments!

Say cheese! Search on for NZ’s top toastie

Ready to titillate tastebuds around the country, the annual Great NZ Toastie Takeover is back for 2023 and kicking it up a gear, with a record number of toasties on offer from Kororāreka to Invercargill.

A firm feature on the culinary calendar, this annual celebration of the humble toasted sandwich keeps growing, with a record 185 eateries participating for 2023 – an increase on last year’s competition which saw a massive 140,000 toasted sandwiches consumed.

Open to all New Zealand eateries, this year’s participants range from sandwich specialists, to fine dining restaurants, breweries and food trucks, with a vegan fast food chain, a subterranean cocktail bar, Wellington Airport, the Bluebridge Cook Strait ferry and even a retirement village in the mix.

October 24, 2022 - No Comments!

Duo Eatery’s all day dining

Chic new Birkenhead café Duo Eatery now has even more to offer North Shore locals, with a new dinner offering for the evening crowd.

Run by  Jordan Macdonald, ex Culprit and Lowbrow, and wife Sarah, a former Masterchef contestant and chef at Woodpecker Hill, Culprit and Fed Deli, the cafe on historic Hinemoa Street opened quietly in March for breakfast and lunch.

Now open three nights a week, dishes include a standout savoury donut filled with creamed paua and horseradish mayo; a whole oyster lamb shoulder, pressed and braised for 24 hours and served with red pepper, harissa, cauliflower puree and a fresh herb salad; and a pretty plate of bone marrow with parsley, caper and sourdough that looks almost too good to eat.

August 31, 2022 - No Comments!

Tokki brings fresh take on Korean

Opening this week, 26-seater Tokki is a new eatery in Milford offering authentic Korean dishes from chef Jason Kim - ex Sidart, Cassia, The Grove, Clooney and most recently Gochu. Bringing his fresh take on Korean fare to the Shore, North Shore locals can expect a more subtle, elegant menu including metre-long flat noodles, beef short ribs with black garlic jus and white kimchi, and crispy chicken wing stuffed with prawn and tofu.

August 30, 2022 - No Comments!

Auckland chef takes top prize at Lee Kum Kee chefs challenge

Aspiring Auckland chef Julius Caesar has taken out top place at the Lee Kum Kee New Zealand Developing Chefs Challenge 2022.

A senior chef de partie at Ponsonby Road Bistro, Caesar competed alongside three other young chefs at the final event held in Auckland this week.

Open to all chefs under the age of 40 either working or training in New Zealand, the competition saw entrants submit a Chinese or Chinese-inspired dish and video online, using a minimum of three Lee Kum Kee sauces or condiments.

Taking home a $3,000 cash prize and the title of 2022 Lee Kum Kee New Zealand Developing Chef, the judges described Caesar as a “talented chef with a mature palette and a big future”.