Earlier this year, Metro magazine released its Top 50 list of Auckland's best restaurants featuring many city centre eateries. Check out what they're offering as part of Restaurant Month this August.
Cassia | $95 for a 6 course tasting menu dinner
The fine dining restaurant of the moment, Cassia serves up Indian cuisine with a modern twist, and is the award-winning restaurant from famed chef Sid Sahrawat. The restaurant is tucked away in the urban surrounds of Fort Lane and stepping off the street and down the stairs the setting is warm and inviting. Restaurant Month is the perfect time to come and see for yourself what true flavour and authentic cuisine really means. Cassia's special six course degustation menu will for sure delight your tastebuds and have you returning again soon.
Hello Beasty | $55 for a 5 course dinner or lunch
Serving up contemporary cuisine inspired by regions of Japan, Korea and China, Hello Beasty is a cult eatery on Auckland's waterfront. Hello Beasty’s kitchen offers a tasty and approachable sharing menu, providing an experience that delivers clean, bold flavour profiles. Their Restaurant Month menu is no exception, with 5 courses including a dessert - think Korean fried cauliflower to line-caught trevally, this is definitely one worth checking out.
Euro Bar and Restaurant | $40 for a 3 course lunch, $65 for a 3 course dinner
An Auckland dining institution for 18 years, Euro is the very essence of a modern classic, with a legendary kitchen philosophy that mixes tradition with innovative techniques and carefully selected ingredients, presenting visual inspiration on the plate. Whether you're looking to dine out for lunch or dinner, Euro has options for both that won't disappoint. Lunch options include (but not limited to) salt and pepper squid, market fish and veal schnitzel, while dinner options include (again not limited to) crayfish ravioli and spatchcock baby chicken.
Baduzzi | $69 for a 3 course dinner and lunch + a glass of wine
The Sicilian word for 'meatballs,' Baduzzi is a collaboration between Michael Dearth, owner of The Grove, and chef Ben Bayly. Casual and affordable, but with an air of sophistication and New-York Italian, the menu features meatball dishes including sandwiches or pasta, as well as plenty of other non-meatball offerings. Their Restaurant Month menu includes entrees like Dodici ore slow cooked lamb meatballs, mains like Buttered maltagliati with duck and porcini ragu, a ricotta cannoli dessert with citrus and bitter chocolate and a class of Allergini Pinot Grigio.
1947 Eatery | $60 for a 2 course dinner and lunch + a glass of wine
1947 eatery presents you with some of the city's most contemporary yet authentic Indian cuisine. Taking inspiration from all facets of Indian cuisine, be it deep fried street vendor snacks or authentic tandoor meats, the Federal Street restaurant fuses the country’s finest into one spice-addled experience. We love the sound of their Restaurant Month menu which includes a Purani Dilli (Old Dehli) korma for a main, as well as a glass of Loveblock Gewurztraminer 2018 wine.
Cafe Hanoi | $40 for a 3 course dinner
Set in the heart of Britomart, Cafe Hanoi is a modern Vietnamese restaurant inspired by the flavours and faded elegance of Hanoi’s Old Quarter. Dishes are characterized by a unique combination of ingredients and cooking techniques that come together to create an exciting dining experience. Their Restaurant Month offering includes a selection of delicious dishes to choose from, including an aromatic curry, green papaya salad, citrus, palm sugar & spice crème brûlée and much more.
The Grove | $99 for a 3 course dinner
The Grove is Auckland fine dining at its best. Marrying exquisite modern New Zealand cuisine with a relaxed and sophisticated atmosphere, this dining spot is the perfect place to go for a special occasion or romantic date night. The Grove's special menu is so special it's a secret. The three-course degustation menu will be revealed closer to the time of Restaurant Month starting - so watch this space!
Clooney | $120 for a 4 course dinner
Clooney has become well loved for being a restaurant that cook precisely executed and boldly flavoured dishes that are unified and balanced, dishes that embody progression and purpose. With dim lighting and sophisticated interiors, head to Clooney for a classy and elegant night out with loved ones. Their Restaurant Month menu includes 4 courses + one canapé with each dish sounding amazing and full of unique flavour.
Culprit. | $40 for a 3+ course dinner
Wander up the narrow staircase at 12 Wyndham Street, and walk through into the enormous loft style space that is Culprit brought to you by Kyle Street and Jordan MacDonald, of former Federal Street fame. The menu is described as ‘new American’ and Culprit are shaking things up in the dining room with a Yum Cha style service, designed to keep you satisfied while you await your order. The Restaurant Month offering includes a TV Dinner for the entree (four bite-sized dishes from their regular night time trolley service) plus a main and a dessert we can't look past: Peanut slab mousse: milk chocolate, caramel popcorn and peanuts.
Ebisu | $65 for a 3+ course dinner & lunch
Occupying a historic building in Auckland’s Britomart precinct, Ebisu serves up contemporary Japanese fare, drawing on a combination of classic Japanese & European techniques to present an outstanding mix of new-style sushi and sashimi as well as traditional Japanese dishes. The dishes on their special menu for August look incredible - we especially love the sound of their entree: prawn dumplings with ginger soy & shaved almond.
Gusto at the Grand | $25 2 course lunch menu with a glass of wine
Gusto at the Grand showcases simple food, classic flavours and fresh seasonal ingredients. With a menu designed by renowned Chef Sean Connolly, Gusto is the perfect spot to share delicious Italian dishes amongst friends and family. Check out their special Restaurant Month menu which includes pea, mint, ricotta bruschetta to start and a main of Pappardelle al Ragù alla Bolognese. A delicious wine match is also included.
Hugo's Bistro | $55 for a 3 course dinner and lunch
This all-day bistro is bringing a sophisticated European vibe to the heart of the city. The creators of Odettes have transformed a compact inner city space in a historic building on Shortland Street into a stunning eatery serving European classics with a modern twist. Come and check it out for yourself during Restaurant Month and try their 3 course special menu which includes dishes like beef check with smoked bone marrow and creamed potato, smoked kahawai fritters and Meyer lemon tart.
Masu | $55 for a 3 course dinner
Japanese food is celebrated on Federal Street with Masu, a Japanese robata restaurant and bar run by New Zealand chef Nic Watt, who has led a reverred career overseas running successful robata restaurants in London, Macau, Hong Kong and America. Robata is contemporary Japanese cuisine cooked over a charcoal grill where theatre and ambience are as much of the process as the eating. Diners can view the chefs at the robata cooking hearth, creating food-laden skewers and slowly rotating them over hot coals. Head here this Restaurant Month for an immersive dining experience, with dishes including Robata grilled King salmon, white fish sashimi, Shiro miso pavlova and more.
O'Connell Street Bistro | $60 for a 5 course dinner and lunch
O’Connell Street Bistro is on the corner of Shortland and O'Connell Streets in Auckland city centre and first opened its doors to diners in 1997. The cuisine is described by the team as “modern European bistro” and a high level of importance is placed on the provenance of the quality produce sourced by the Bistro. Take a seat in this sophisticated and intimate dining room and enjoy their exquisite 5-course Restaurant Month menu which consists of watercress cream soup, braised beef, crayfish and cauliflower risotto to name a few.
Ortolana | $25 for a 2 course lunch or $40 for a 3 course dinner
Ortolana is a contemporary bistro set within an elegant, sun-filled conservatory in the Pavilions at Britomart. Surrounded by greenery, Ortolana is an urban oasis - the perfect spot for a long lunch on a sunny day. The menu has a distinctive Italian and wider European flavour, with a strong emphasis on perfectly fresh produce, much of it from the restaurant's own market garden. They have both a lunch and dinner menu offer for Restaurant Month, featuring dishes including organic chicken cotoletta, and desserts like lemon meringue tart and chocolate torte.
SOUL Bar & Bistro | $40 for a 2 course dinner and lunch
Set in the heart of Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour, SOUL prides itself on its use of the finest, freshest local ingredients and, as may be expected from its location, it has an emphasis on seafood. It's $40 dinner and lunch menu this Restaurant Month includes many delicious entree and main choices, such as smoked chicken liver pâté, sweet & sour date syrup and grilled sourdough, grilled tarakihi, beef & Guinness short rib and more mouthwatering dishes.
Depot Eatery and Oyster Bar | $65 for a Taste of Depot + a glass of champagne
The perfect place to drop in and refuel, chef Al Brown’s Depot is all about in season, beautifully cooked food to be enjoyed with friends. Most of the cooking is over charcoal or hard wood so there’s a real succulence to the flavours. Their special Restaurant Month offer is all about experiencing the essence of Depot - try 3 Pacific oysters with shallot chardonnay vinegar, then move on to their CrayDog: Karengo crumbed crayfish with wasabi mayo and rock sugar syrup. What's more, it's all made more delicious with a complimentary glass of Bollinger Special Cuvee NV.