Three $1 million sees The Coffee Club start New Year with a record-breaking bang
The Coffee Club New Zealand, one of the countries largest and most successful café brands, has announced that the business reached its first $1 million week in December, quickly followed by two more record-breaking weeks before the end of the month. Read more...
Gibbston Valley Winery launches full-service bike centre to cater for growing demand
Award-winning Gibbston Valley Winery is adding to the experiences that locals and visitors can enjoy at the winery with the opening of a new on-site bike centre. Read more...
Eight turns four at The Langham Auckland with a diners' prize giveaway
Four decadent years ago, The Langham’s award-winning Eight restaurant opened its doors and offered diners a unique interactive experience. And every day since, diners have been spoiled for choice thanks to the wonderful variety of cuisine at the restaurant’s eight kitchens. Read more...
New strategic direction for Restaurant Association
The Restaurant Association of New Zealand, the industry organisation for restaurants, cafes and other members of the hospitality sector announced that it is stepping away from running the New Zealand Culinary Fare - an event it has proudly staged for more than 20 years - to pursue a new member-focused strategy. Read more...
Mission Estate tops the tables in UK survey
According to new research conducted by Wine Business Solution, New Zealand’s oldest winery, Mission Estate, is the most successful New Zealand brand in the UK for on-premise listings in 2014.
Mission Estate toppled previous leader Cloudy Bay from the number one slot and now has 5.3% market share compared to just 0.5% last year. Read more...
Coro Loop leads to Drving Creek for lunch and adventure by train
(17/12/2014) David Wyatt - The Gastromrider
A recent ride over to the Coromandel had me discovering a couple of places that I didn’t even know existed.
A ride on the 'Coro Loop' has a multitude of great places to stop and grab a feed - Thames, Coromandel township, Whitianga, Whangamata, Waihi - to name a few. They all have somewhere you can stop, have a coffee, something to eat, and have a rave with your biker buddies about how great SH 25 is. Read more...
Boo! Christmas comes early for Context Architects in Christchurch
Context Architects celebrated a busy rebuild year in early December at a stunning new bar it designed in Christchurch’s burgeoning Victoria Street. With a speakeasy, American South vibe; Brett Gidden’s popular new Boo Radley’s bar hosted Context’s South Island Director Alisdair Daines, Director Stephen Voyle and clients and friends in acknowledging what has been a brilliant and demanding year for the practice in Christchurch. Read more...
Travel Channel launches TV series Hotel Impossible
Italian American hospitality expert and television personality Anthony Melchiorri helps hotels around the world find the path to success.
Anthony’s no-nonsense advice and trusted design team transform even the most run-down property into a desirable stayover. Read more...
Microsoft Windows Server 2003 end-of-support
By Cynthia Daly
It’s teaming with rain and I’m off to the launch of a new book by renowned Auckland chef, Jeremy Schmid. He’s a ‘learn by experiment’ master at charcuterie, the name behind Little Boys sausages and restaurant, Two Fifteen Bar and Bistro, but he’s moved to the seaside and his new ideas are smoking hot! Read more...
Review by Pip Duncan
Neil Perry is arguably one of Australia’s greatest and most successful chefs. In Simple Good Food he shares some of his simple recipes he likes to cook for family and friends.Try the Asian banquet – a collection of tasty Asian-style dishes which are served on a shared table. Read more or to order...
“In February I’m starting my Hospitality Management Diploma at NZMA, and I want to work over the break to further my skills, build on what I’ve already learnt and gain more experience,” says Mata.
“I’m already trained in cocktails, coffees, customer service, banqueting, fine dining and more, and I have my LCQ.”
HELL launches wild food series with gourmet rabbit pizza
HELL is launching a unique series of wild food pizzas this month. The first member of the family is The Rabbit pizza, which will be in-store from 11 April – just in time for Easter.
Living wage puts bill on those who cannot afford it – MANZ
The calls for a so-called living wage ignores economic reality and puts the cost on to mostly small businesses that cannot afford it, says the Motel Association of New Zealand (MANZ).
New Zealand economic growth is still fragile and many small businesses such as motels are still in recovery mode after some lean years, and not well equipped to deal with the constant cost pressure being heaped on them by local and central government, MANZ Chief Executive Michael Baines says.
Heston Blumenthal flies The Fat Duck to Melbourne
Melbourne is set to welcome, Heston Blumenthal’s first international restaurant, with the arrival of his three Michelin starred, The Fat Duck, in February 2015.
10 reasons to attend The Food Show Christchurch
Whether you’re a Food Show veteran or virgin, you need to know what you’re getting into when you
attend The Food Show Christchurch from 4 to 6 April at the CBS Canterbury Arena. So here’s the top
10 reasons why you should go: Read more...
Entertainment Book – changing the way we dine
For 15 years, the Entertainment Book has been helping New Zealanders live life to the full by making outings to movies, holidays, restaurants and family activities more accessible. At the same time, it has been providing funds for community projects in almost every region of New Zealand. This year, to celebrate the milestone - the Entertainment Book will be available in two formats. The traditional hard copy book, as well as the new Digital version which can be downloaded to your phone. Read more...
The pioneering class of 2014 - MIT’s New Diploma of Baking
When you walk into the kitchen being used by the first group of students to study for a Diploma of Baking in this country, you are greeted by warm aromas and satisfied smiles as well-stacked baking trays are pulled out of the ovens. There’s a sense of real purpose and achievement there – these young students know they are part of a pioneering class.
Masterton bakery has best buns
Congratulations to Ten O'clock Cookie Bakery Cafe in Masterton, winners of the 2014 Great New Zealand Hot Cross Bun Competition. BIANZ President Michael Gray presented the award and certificate at the bakery on April 1. Read more...
Top culinary students prepare to battle it out
Top hospitality students from around the country are getting ready to battle it out in a live kitchen cook off that will see one team named the nation’s best in the annual Nestlé Toque d’Or competition. Read more...
Fairtrade ANZ welcomes Ferrero Fairtrade commitment
Fairtrade cocoa farmers have received another major boost as Ferrero announced its collaboration with Fairtrade at the International Fairtrade Conference in Berlin.
Ferrero will purchase a total of 20,000 tonnes (MT) of Fairtrade certified cocoa over the next three years. Read more...
A Taste of Britain Tiffin now being served at Palm Court
It’s all about Great Britain at the Langham Auckland this April.The Royals are in town and beautiful new Palm Court now serves the finest afternoon tea in town, so the luxury hotel has created a delicious Brit-inspired Tiffin Afternoon Tea to celebrate.
Put a Höpt in your step - a modern soft drink for a modern drinker
Love a refreshing soft drink but conscious of the sugar load and artificial ingredients? Find water unrewarding and not special enough? Enter Höpt Sodas...
Fine Food New Zealand 2014 set to stimulate industry and economic growth
Independent data gathered and analysed by Covec at Fine Food NZ 2012 shows $13.667 million of sales were made by the 267 companies exhibiting, equating to an average of $51,187 worth of sales per exhibitor.
Italian experience worth the challenges for Kiwi chef
When Hawke’s Bay born Chef Mike Mcaulay packed his bags for a job in Italy eight years ago he felt prepared and pretty confident about the decision.
As he now starts to think about returning home to New Zealand he has realised just how much the experience has enriched his life.
Mini vampires can survive up to 500 days without feeding on blood
By Cynthia Daly
Cimex lectularius are small, vicious bloodsuckers but chances are you won’t know they have attacked you until two days after their thirst-quenching feed because their saliva carries an anesthetic.
Young Wellington chef wins $10,000 bursary
The only female and youngest chef among the finalists has been awarded the inaugural Ōra King Chef’s Bursary worth $10,000.
Top butchers compete for national title
Across the nation, young butchers and apprentices are perfecting their cutting and presentation skills in anticipation of the 2014 Alto Young Butcher and Competenz Butcher Apprentice of the Year competition.
Entrants have until 24 May to get their entries in and once the regional finals have been completed, 10 finalists will go onto compete in the Grand Final in Auckland on 12 September. Read more...
Auckland hospitality industry selects its superstars
The search for stars from all aspects of Auckland’s hospitality scene has begun with nominations now open for the 2014 Lewisham Awards.
Whether it be a new chef or barista, a supplier or a wine list, the Lewisham Awards recognise every aspect that contributes to the excellence of Auckland’s vibrant food scene.
Deutz sparkles after trophy win at Easter Show Wine Awards
Deutz Marlborough Cuvée is celebrating a Trophy win after Deutz Marlborough Cuvée Blanc de Blancs 2009 was awarded the Champion Sparkling Wine Trophy at the Easter Show Wine Awards 2014 Dinner, held at ASB Showgrounds in Auckland on Saturday 22nd March. Read more...
Rogue Society leads Kiwi gin renaissance
The brain-child of three Kiwis, Rogue Society Gin is reintroducing the pleasure of one of the world’s oldest spirits to a new generation of New Zealanders as the global trend towards gin-based cocktails moves down under.
Dilmah launches tea capsules
Loyal tea drinkers will be able to entertain their tea-loving friends at the push of button with the New Zealand launch of Dilmah tea capsules.Available in popular Earl Grey and English Breakfast, the new tea capsules are compatible with Nespresso machines and allow for an alternative, and quicker, tea making experience to traditional tea bags.
Five Tips: Waiter, love your work
By Johann Wohlmuther
There is a lot of truth in the saying that ‘the only way to do great work is to love what you do…’ which was penned by the late, great Steve Jobs.
Hospitality is 100 percent based on being hospitable and attitude about your work is everything. Read more...
Kiwi chef living the dream in London
Day starts early in the quiet basement kitchen of Ozone Coffee Roasters in Shoreditch London baking fresh cakes, galettes and lamingtons while drinking a good cup of English tea - despite working with so much great coffee around I always start the day like this. Read more...
New Zealand a major focus says Choice Hotels CEO
Choice Hotels CEO Trent Fraser is expecting a stellar year of growth for the hotel franchisor in New Zealand, in an economy that he believes is on the up.
A Taste of Britain Tiffin only at The Langham
It’s all about Britain at the Langham Auckland this April. The Royals and the Rolling Stones are in town and our elegant new Palm Court has opened its doors, so to celebrate we’ve created a delicious Brit-inspired Tiffin Afternoon Tea. Read more...
It’s not St Patrick's Day without Guinness
Guinness on a Monday? Why thank you!
Monday 17th March marks the special date when people from around the globe unite in celebration to recognise St Patrick’s Day and honour Irish heritage.
Bakers Delight 'Bundraiser' Day 2014 to support Starship Hospital
Bakers Delight ‘Bundraiser’ Day is back! Saturday April 5 is a day for all Kiwis to purchase, eat and enjoy Hot Cross Buns, with $1 from every six-pack sold going to Starship, New Zealand’s biggest children’s hospital. Read more...
Let The Great Monteith’s Meatpack Hunt begin!
It’s not every day you get the opportunity to “hunt” your own meat and in your own backyard, but
with The Great Monteith’s Meatpack Hunt you can do just that.
Dutch trio sweep NZ Cheese Awards
Dutch influences have made their mark on New Zealand cheese, with three supreme awards at the 2014 NZ Champions of Cheese Awards directly related to a Dutch heritage.
Join The Great Monteith’s Meatpack Hunt
Sean Connolly and Monteith’s team up to launch mobile app celebrating beer, cider and food matching
It’s not every day you get the opportunity to “hunt” your own meat and in your own backyard, but with The Great Monteith’s Meatpack Hunt you can do just that.
Fine Food NZ packed with features to fuel industry growth in 2014
Fine Food New Zealand (Fine Food NZ) returns to Auckland’s ASB Showgrounds from 22 to 24 June 2014, showcasing the best and most innovative products and services to the foodservice, hospitality, and food retail industries. Read more...
And the 2014 Young Bread Baker of the Year Award goes to...
Judging for the top young bread baker in New Zealand took place in Auckland last week with Aidan Horner from Quality Bakers in Nelson and Bree Scott from Lyttleton Bakery being declared joint winners of the 2014 "Young Bread Baker of the Year" competition. Read more...
Gastromrider's greatest adventure yet!
By David Wyatt - The Gastromrider
A chance meeting with a fellow biker late last year, who had suggested a great place to visit, had me making plans to visit the Lake District of Rotorua and a cafe called The Okere Falls Store. An adventure was planned that would exceed all expectations.
Palate Restaurant's Mat Mclean wins Silver Fern Farms Premier Selection Award
Mat Mclean chef owner of Palate Restaurant in Hamilton has won the inaugural Silver Fern Farms Premier Selection Award which declared him ‘Premier Master of Fine Cuisine’ in Auckland tonight. His winning dish - Reserve eye-fillet and slow cooked short rib. Read more...
Spa move demonstrates commitment to luxury
Wellington’s most internationally acclaimed spa is relocating to the Amora Hotel in time for the most romantic day of the year.
Bodyhaven Spa was previously located on Level 16 of the James Cook Hotel Grand Chancellor on The Terrace in central Wellington, but will move to the Mezzanine Floor at the Amora Hotel Wellington from today (10 February 2014).
Cocktails shaken & stirred – By Mark Harrison
Just released is the perfect book to get you whipping up cocktails like never before! You’ll have people queuing up to try them, and with more than 200 recipes to choose from your cocktail-making will definitely add a bit of life to your drinks menu.
Farmers get ready to put reputation at steak
Nationwide, farmers are preparing their entries for the annual Beef + Lamb New Zealand Steak of Origin Competition.
The event, entering its twelfth year, recognises New Zealand’s most tender and tasty steak, an award taken seriously by industry professionals. Read more...
Are you the next Weston Milling Trainee of the Year winner?
In 2014 the Weston Milling Trainee of the Year competition is going to be intense!!!! This year it will be held again at one of Auckland’s biggest events, the Fine Food NZ show. The show normally attracts thousands of people, so for the trainees who are competing the pressure will be intense but the rewards will be great.
A West Coast take on an American classic
Monteith’s brewers have gone a little red, white and blue in creating their latest addition to the Brewer’s Series range, introducing new Monteith’s Brewer’s Series American Pale Ale (APA).
The iconic West Coast Brewery has created a full flavoured interpretation of an American classic and a beer that our brewers think has the true characteristics of the style. Read more...
‘Barista Smackdown’ set to heat up Fine Food NZ 2014
(18/3/2014)Calling all baristas! If you claim to make the best coffee in town, prove you are the cream of the crop by taking on the competition at Fine Food New Zealand this June 22-24 in the Restaurant Association’s ‘Barista Smackdown’ sponsored by Tiger Coffee and IncaFé. Read more...
New CEO for Fairtrade Australia & New Zealand
Fairtrade Australia and New Zealand have announced the appointment of Molly Harriss Olson as Chief Executive Officer.
Olson, the former Chair of Fairtrade International, joins the organisation at an important time.
Fairtrade Australia and New Zealand, which has seen significant growth since its inception 10
years ago and is now New Zealand and Australia’s most recognised ethical label, is looking at
ways to expand even further. Read more...
Cloudy Bay vineyard leads oyster season globally
This year, two of New Zealand’s finest local luxuries Cloudy Bay Pelorus and freshly shucked oysters will be served together as a first of the season food and wine pairing. Read more...
Prime Minister helps select New Zealand's tastiest lamb
New Zealand’s most tender and tasty lamb has been announced at the final of the annual
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Golden Lamb Awards, aka the Glammies. Read more...
Hospo to nominate the best in Hawke's Bay
The Hawke’s Bay Hospitality Awards 2014 nominations open to the industry on Thursday 6th March. The event, running for the 7th
year, has become an important part of the region’s event calendar. It identifies the diligent workers in all areas of Hospitality and acknowledges their achievements. Read more...
Auckland gets Mardi Gras before the rest of the world
Today signifies the start of Mardi Gras day and New Zealand will be the first in the world to start the celebrations with a 19 hour head start. Read more...
Stoneleigh brings Aucklanders a multi-sensory experience
The winemakers of Stoneleigh, Marborough have a treat in-store for Aucklanders. From the beauty of their sun-drenched vineyard of ripening grapes, they were inspired to give Aucklanders a tranquil, stunning suspended garden set in the heart of the city - an oasis to relax in over a perfectly chilled glass of Stoneleigh wine. Read more...
Prime Minister opens redeveloped Speight's Brewery
The Prime Minister, the Rt Hon John Key, has today officially opened
Lion’s refurbished Speight’s Brewery in Dunedin following a three
year, $40m upgrade project. Read more...
New Salon Director appointed for the Restaurant Association's New Zealand Culinary Fare
The Restaurant Association is pleased to announce the official appointment of Pip Duncan to the role of Salon Director for the New Zealand Culinary Fare and the Auckland Regional Culinary Fare.
“Pip has specialised in working in the Hospitality and Food Service Industries for a number of years and brings with her a wealth of experience and expertise. We are lucky to have secured such a seasoned professional for the role and this adds to the excitement of the 2014 New Zealand and Regional Culinary Fares,” says Marisa Bidois Chief Executive of the Restaurant Association. Read more...
Quick! The Food Show Christchurch comes early this year!
Mainlanders get a faster than usual dose of the South Island’s biggest culinary exhibition this year because The Food Show Christchurch has moved forward from September to new, earlier dates: 4 to 6 April at the CBS Canterbury Arena.
MIT officially opens doors on new training facility for baking students
Manukau Institute of Technology has a brand new baking training facility, more than twice the size of the original School of Baking and Patisserie. It was officially opened with a blessing of the building by MIT’s Kaumatua yesterday. Read more...
Gusto brings authentic Italian dining to Federal Street
Sean Connolly is extending his philosophy of simple, uncomplicated food with the opening of authentic Italian restaurant Gusto at the Grand, adding another quality dining destination to SKYCITY’s Federal Street in central Auckland.
Ice cream judges seek out the 'Best of Chocolate'
The 18th New Zealand Ice Cream Awards are to be judged in Auckland from Monday, April 14, 2014 and if you make your own ice cream you could be eligible to enter. Read more...
My wine, my blend or what about one for someone special?
By Cynthia Daly
Last Thursday I made my own blend of wine! It was great fun and very addictive because now I have one bottle of my own unique blend and I want to share the taste but the dilemma is, I only have one bottle! What’s more, I want to make blends for people I know who will enjoy their uniqueness, and what about a blend for my partner to celebrate Valentine’s Day with? Oh the possibilities are endless… but the time to do it isn’t, Blend closes its pop-up doors on February 15.
NZMA puts finishing touches to ‘Louis Vuitton’ of training facilities
NZMA is about to open the doors of its brand new purpose-build Auckland training campus at Sylvia Park.
The campus is huge in spatial terms, future-proofed for a bright outlook, drenched in natural light and partitioned to create flexible spaces.
Top wine connoisseurs descend on Queenstown’s Hotel St Moritz for 10th annual Pinot Noir celebration
Some of the world’s top wine connoisseurs and critics will descend on Queenstown’s St Moritz hotel this Thursday 30 January to attend the 10th annual Central Otago Pinot Noir Celebration (COPNC). Read more...
ASB Auckland Seafood Festival turns on a simply delicious day out
ASB Auckland Seafood Festival held over Auckland Anniversary Weekend (25-27 January) proved an absolutely delicious way to spend some time with family and friends. Check out our photo essay on the gallery page.
Indulging in some iced tea
Exquisite iced tea drinks are now available in The Langham Auckland’s new luxurious lobby bar Palm Court. Master Tea Sommelier Benjamin McManus has carefully created five exotic iced teas to leave guests with a cool and lasting taste this summer. Read more...
Ōra King launches Chef’s Bursary
Ōra King is set to give one of New Zealand’s up-and-coming chefs a taste of the world with the launch of a new Chef’s Bursary.
From the sushi masters of Japan, to the Michelin star maestros of Europe, one talented chef will travel to a culinary destination of his or her choice thanks to the $10,000 scholarship offered by the award-winning salmon brand.
Ōra King general manager food services and marketing Jemma McCowan says the time is right to nurture young Kiwi chefs on the global stage.
“Food and its provenance have never before had a higher profile in New Zealand. We’re delighted Ōra King has been adopted with such passion by a wide range of leading chefs and restaurants.
“Our talented Kiwi chefs already have a great reputation amongst their international peers, and overseas experience plays a vital part in achieving the highest standards. Now we want to support the next generation of culinary talent to reach similar levels.
“To that end we think it’s important to provide them with the opportunity to develop their expertise and experience overseas, inspired by our Ōra King network internationally,” Ms McCowan says.
To help raise the profile of the winning chef, he or she will get the opportunity to write about the experience in an online blog. Additional findings will be compiled into a special report to be released to supporters of the Ōra King brand.
“It’s vital for any great chef to actively seek out different food flavours, tastes and techniques and what better way to do this than by experiencing them first-hand,” Ms McCowan says.
“We’re very much looking forward to embracing the Bursary recipient’s learnings and dishes on return to New Zealand.”
From today, chefs can request an information pack outlining full details and how to apply by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applicants need to submit a proposal outlining where they want to visit, the itinerary content, and why. A letter of recommendation from their head chefs or mentors must also be included.
Applications close on Friday, February 28 with the winner announced in mid-March and travel set to take place soon after.
Entries will be judged by some of New Zealand’s culinary industry leaders including Cuisine editor Sarah Nicholson, president of NZ Guild of Food Writers Trudi Nelson, Restaurant Association of New Zealand CEO Marisa Bidois and Ōra King’s Jemma McCowan.
And then the Three Little Pigs went to market
(19 December 2013)
By Robyn Yousef
Three Little Pigs of Wellington have imported (arguably – no other reported sightings) the first Langs Barbecue into New Zealand from the US. It’s built like as tank, looks like a small locomotive and the smoked meat produced with its reverse flow horizontal smoker-cooker has a unique manuka-infused flavour. Read more...
A Taste of Gibbston Valley opens country’s first Pizzelle Shop in Arrowtown
(13 December 2013)
Summer is coming and to celebrate A Taste of Gibbston Valley is opening New Zealand’s first specialist Pizzelle shop today, Friday December 13.
The sweet Italian delicacies are the latest addition to the Gibbston Valley business.
The Pizzelle Shop will feature traditional pastries and cold pressed iced coffee served as takeaway-style treats to enjoy on the go. Read more...
Vector Arena wins two national awards
(9 December 2013)
Venue managers and staff from all over New Zealand let their hair down and relaxed on December 2 at an event organised for them, not by them, for a change. In a glittering black tie dinner at Auckland Art Gallery, venue strategists and management gathered for the inaugural EVANZ awards.
The event honoured some of the industry’s unsung heroes and rising stars and highlighted event industry best practice in entertainment venues across the country. Vector Arena scooped two of the night’s biggest awards; Ticketmaster Large Venue of the Year and TicketDirect Supreme Venue of the Year. Read more...
Invercargill are the masters!
(6 December 2013)
More than 180 bars competed and more than 14,000 punters voted to find 16 regional finalists, who competed in four regional finals. The country’s top five put forward their best pour at the Grand Final, and it has all boiled down to one supreme winning team who are clearly made of more: Nick Rhodes and Brendan Mason from The Kelvin Hotel in Invercargill have taken out the title of Guinness Pint Master 2013!
Who will become New Zealand's Guinness Pint Master champion?
(3 December 2013)
Thursday December 5 will see New Zealand's top five finalists in the Guinness Pint Master battle it out for the title at The Paddington in Parnell, Auckland.
The finalists will be attempting to pour the perfect pint of Guinness, as well as presenting a Guinness-based creation - the regional finalists showed some amazing creativity that included molecular gastronomy. So what will the finalists come up with this time?
This event is open to the public so why not get along to The Paddington to find out.
What: Guinness Pint Master National final
Where: The Paddington, Parnell
117 St Georges Bay Road
When: 6pm onwards
Whangarei Heads venturing Gastromrider discovers The Deck Café at McLeod Bay
By David Wyatt, The Gastromrider
There had been a place on my radar that I had been waiting for the opportunity/excuse to go and visit. The Deck Cafe is situated out along the Whangarei Heads Road and is about 25 minutes’ drive from Whangarei township. Read more...
Watch out for the Comet
(27 November 2013)
What do an IPA, a 5 km wide lump of space rock and Santa’s 5th reindeer have in common? They are all called “Comet” and will all be making a presence in the coming weeks leading up to Christmas.
Epic Brewing Company have released the latest version from the “One Trick Pony” single hop IPA series - Comet IPA. Comet IPA is named after the hop variety used called Comet. A single hopped IPA is a beer made just with one hop variety, so that the beer drinker can experience specifically the aromas and flavours that the specific hop can produce. Read more...
Brancott Estate Heritage Centre wins International Wine Tourism Award
(27 November 20130
A New Zealand cellar door has won a 2014 International Best of Wine Tourism award with the Brancott Estate Heritage Centre in Marlborough being the only New Zealand cellar door to win this prestigious award. Read more...
Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV takes top spot at Air New Zealand Wine Awards
(25 November 2013)
A Sparkling wine from Marlborough has won top honours at this year’s Air New Zealand Wine Awards, making it only the third Sparkling wine in the 27-year history of the Awards to take out the coveted prize.
The Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV was awarded the prestigious Air New Zealand Champion Wine of the Show at the Air New Zealand Wine Awards Gala Dinner held in Queenstown on Saturday night (November 23). The wine also won the Wineworks Champion Sparkling Wine Trophy.
Chair of Judges and Master of Wine, Michael Brajkovich, described the wine to the 520 guests as having, “a richness, length and complexity on the palate that finishes with a fine, persistent acidity.”
“This is a classic expression of this exciting wine style and a clear pointer as to how good New Zealand Sparkling wine already is, and can be in the future,” Mr Brajkovich said.
Nautilus Estate, the producer of the winning wine, is a small, family-owned Marlborough winery which started in 1985. The Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV is made from Marlborough-grown Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes, and has become an iconic sparkling on the New Zealand wine scene since its launch in 1989. It has won a number of awards over the years, including trophies at the Sydney International Wine Competition and the Royal Easter Wine Show. Read more...
Talent wows tutor at MIT end of year assessment
(21 November 2013)
Students at Manukau Institute of Technology’s School of Baking and Patisserie took their learning to a level that surpassed their lessons for their final assessment, wowing their tutor with the result and all successfully graduating.
As friends and family eagerly waited outside the school last night (November 20) to see what the students had achieved, MIT School of Baking and Patisserie senior lecturer Ralf Schmidt gathered the students together to announce the results of the assessment.
“Wow where did you learn some of that stuff!” “The standard this year is exceptional and I’m pleased to say that every one of you has passed,” said Ralf.
While the final assessment required the students to make a show piece, gateau, baked cheesecake or tiramisu for many these were just the beginnings of creating not only amazing baked or crafted works of art but also according to Ralf, items that tasted equally amazing.
“They were such a talented group that sometimes I had to bring them back to the learning level in order for them to master the skills required and I was concerned at how they would prepare their assessment pieces because of their enthusiasm but look what they have achieved,” said a very proud Ralf.
The students completed the one-year course National Diploma in Baking Level 3 and are now off into careers in baking as varied as their assessment pieces. More images...
Gold medals announced at Air New Zealand Wine Awards 2013
(13 November 2013)
New Zealand wineries have again impressed judges at this year’s Air New Zealand Wine Awards with wines of outstanding quality making up the 111 gold medal winners.
Pinot Noir was the strongest performer, winning 22 gold medals, while 20 gold medals were awarded for Sauvignon Blanc and 17 for Chardonnay.
The aromatics classes, consisting of Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Viognier and Albariño, also shone in this year’s competition, bagging a total of 25 gold medals. The judges were impressed by the sparkling class, which was awarded 19 medals, including six gold. Read more...
Local vineyard supports Autism New Zealand with charity dinner and auction
(11 November 2013)
Cable Bay Vineyards is hosting a fundraising dinner and auction to support Autism New Zealand on Friday 15th November, 6.30pm – 11.00pm.
Taking place at the vineyard restaurant, the auction will be hosted by local celebrity and author, John Hawkesby, with fantastic auction lots on offer to help raise money for a very worthy cause.
The dinner includes an exquisite four course meal matched with superb wines, devised by Head Chef Sam Clark. Tickets cost $125 per person, with all proceeds going towards funding two of the valuable programmes that Autism New Zealand provides to support families with a child diagnosed on the autism spectrum.
The exciting and luxurious items for auction include a luxury sail on a MV Kawe with dinner prepared by Cable Bay’s Head Chef, use of a BMW for a month and a signed and framed All Blacks jersey, autographed by the 2013 squad.
Local islander, co-owner and winemaker at Cable Bay, Neill Culley said: “We’re delighted to support Autism New Zealand and host this inaugural fundraising event. As a parent of an autistic child myself, I know first-hand what invaluable services and help they can provide to families.
“The two programmes we will be supporting help families with recently diagnosed children, giving them the tools they need to adjust at this crucial time. I hope the whole community get involved and come along to enjoy what promises to be a very special evening.”
For ticket sales, please contact Jess Lancaster on 09 372 5889 or email email@example.com.
Millbrook Resort named Top Hotel in New Zealand for second year running
Multi-award winning Millbrook Resort has been lauded the Top Hotel in New Zealand for the second year running in Trip Advisor’s annual Travellers’ Choice awards. Trip Advisor, the world’s largest travel site, on January 22, announced the winners of the awards which are given to the world’s most outstanding properties. Read more...
Beef and Lamb culinary 'Rockstars' revealed
The five 2014 Beef + Lamb New Zealand Ambassador Chefs have been announced today at an exclusive degustation lunch.
Chosen from the 164 recipients of the 2014 Beef and Lamb Excellence Award, the selected chefs represent some of the top performers amongst the Award holders. Read more...
US petition raises awareness of emergency dialling in hotels and motels
It took a very tragic event to alert people in the United States about the difficulty to dial an emergency number from a hotel or motel room.
Now a petition through www.change.org (Let hotel phones dial 911 easily: Enact Kari's Law) has been launched to try and change legislation so that all hotel and motel phones use the E911 system which allows emergency calls to be made direct to the 911 operator.
While just about everyone uses a mobile phone these days, Kari’s case proved that there is definitely a need for a recognised and standardised emergency dialling system in motels and hotels.
The petition was launched after Kari Hunt was killed by her estranged husband while staying at a motel.
As the situation unfolded her nine-year-old daughter tried desperately to dial 911 but was thwarted by the motel’s dialling system that required her to dial a second ‘9’ for an outside line.
In New Zealand, hotels and motels use various in-room phone systems many of which connect to an operator who processes the call. In the case of an emergency that procedure could mean valuable time lost waiting for the operator to answer and then place the 111 call.
What do you think? Should New Zealand adopt an in-room direct dialling emergency system?
Send your comment to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Comment: Heritage Hotel Group - At Heritage Hotels, if a 111 call is dialled from a room the call goes straight through and also the phone system alerts reception that a call has been made.
(19 December 2013)
By Johann Wohlmuther
Hello, Grüß Gott, bonjour, guten tag, buon giorno, hola, namaste, konnichi ha.
New Zealand’s remoteness is often associated with our young peoples’ need to go and see the world. The Kiwi OE is the motivation for many future travellers to get a job in the hospitality industry not only to save for their trip but also to learn skills that might help them find work overseas. Read more...
Shaking up Auckland Airport
(16 December 2013)
A new Shaky Isles at Auckland Airport is upping the offerings for the international traveller. With successful cafes in the CBD and Kingsland, the innovative company has entered into a partnership agreement with Spotless Services (NZ) which sees it open a third outlet, this time in the airport’s international departures area.
Career in hospitality wins over rugby and landscape gardening for scholarship winner
(12 December 2013)Sam Cuuningham, winner of the 2013 Stella Artois Draught Masters is one of the eight winners announced for the Hospitality NZ/SKY Future Leader Scholarships. The scholarships have a value of up to $3000 each, and include $2000 towards fees for studying the National Diploma in Hospitality Level 5 (Operational Management), and up to $1000 reimbursement of costs to attend the Future Leaders Day in 2014.
DINEAID gets timely boost
(9 December 2013)
With a target of $100,000, the innovative DineAid campaign has got off to a roaring good start with around $20,000 raised through Taste of Auckland initiatives.
And while the organisers won’t know exactly how much has been raised until year’s end, at the halfway stage they’re urging diners to support participating eateries.
The two-month annual charitable campaign is designed to help hungry and homeless New Zealanders. It runs from November until New Year’s Eve and involves customers at selected restaurants and cafés nationwide donating their spare change to the cause.
DineAid has been Taste of Auckland’s charity of choice since both began in 2008 and around $20,000 was raised at the event and also at a charity auction.
Now DineAid ambassador and chef Annabelle White is encouraging Kiwis to help build on the great start.
“Our target for 2013 is $100,000 and with only a month to go it’s time to get out and support all the cafés and eateries participating in the initiative,” Annabelle says. “It’s simply a matter of adding $2 or more to your bill – how easy is that?”
Since it launched in New Zealand five years ago, DineAid has raised almost $400,000. Every single cent goes to City Mission Food Banks in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, which distribute goods to 140 locations throughout the country.
Auckland City Mission’s Diane Robertson says the need has never been greater.
“The cost of the food in a food parcel for a family of four for four days is $62.71. Demand in Auckland has almost doubled in the past five years. We distribute around 11,200 parcels a year now.
“The food is hardly gourmet but we try to make it nutritious so I urge Kiwi diners to pause for a moment when they are paying their bill and think of those who are less fortunate than they,” Diane says.
With more than 150 restaurants and 200 cafés involved in this year’s campaign, all palates and budgets are catered for.
Diners have the option of adding $2 to their bill at the end of a restaurant meal or can drop $2 into collection boxes in any participating café.
For more information on DineAid and a full list of participating restaurants and cafes head to www.dineaid.org.nz
Summer time is Cabana time at Windsor Castle
(3 December 2013)
To celebrate the return of summer – the Corona Cabana Bar opened last Thursday (November 28) at the Windsor Castle in Parnell. What better way to welcome back the return of the sunshine than with sweet sounds, sangria, snacks and, of course, ice cold Coronas! Read more...
Auckland chef/mum develops cookies for pregnancy, lactation, family wellness and brain health
(28 November 2013)
Dairy and wheat free cookies created as a result of one mother’s devotion to her children’s wellbeing – and aptly named Totally Devoted – should be available at your local coffee shop or café soon.
The Totally Devoted range now features four varieties:
Parliament removes the imminent ban on mini-bars
(26 November 2013)
Hospitality New Zealand has congratulated Parliament for quietly and effectively fixing an anomaly in the new liquor laws which would have required hotels and motels to remove all mini-bars from December 18.
Clare Davies, Hospitality New Zealand accommodation spokesperson and Hospitality NZ Board Member, said a section in the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 would have had the unintended consequence of totally banning mini-bars from mid-December.
“However, Parliament unanimously passed the Statutes Amendment Bill 2013 last week which contained a simple clause fixing the problem. The amendment specifically confirms that the institution of mini-bars can continue in New Zealand motels and hotels. Our members certainly welcome that correction,” she said.
“The legislation was never intended to ban mini-bars and, once the mistake was identified, the Ministry of Justice worked with the hospitality industry to ensure it was fixed before owners had to start pulling drinks out of fridges. Using the Statutes Amendment process, which is designed to make non-controversial amendments to a range of Acts, was a suggestion made by Hospitality NZ in our role as hospo sector advocate. It is absolutely brilliant that all of Parliament has supported this much-needed fix,” said Ms Davies.
“Hospitality New Zealand congratulates all Members of Parliament and the officials at the Ministry of Justice for solving a problem created by the wording in the original piece of legislation. We thank Minister Hon Chester Borrows for submitting the Supplementary Order Paper which contained the mini-bar amendment. Hospitality NZ is pleased to have been able to play a constructive role in efficiently solving this issue before it had a real impact on our members,” she said.
Clare Davies said that: “Thanks to the vote in Parliament last week, the threatened ban on mini-bars has become a complete non-issue overnight. As the holiday season approaches, Kiwis can be rest assured that they will still be able to enjoy a cold drink from a mini-bar at accommodation venues around the country."
Tourism boom a boost for hospitality
(21 November 2013)
Hospitality New Zealand says the strong performance of our tourism sector is a huge boon for the hospitality industry which in turn is determined to ensure the growing number of international visitors feel welcome here. HNZ fully supports the recent Government initiatives – including the increased investment in Budget 2013, the Tourism NZ Roadshows and the successful launch of The New Zealand Story campaign – which have helped produce strong growth figures in our key markets.
Peter Morrison, Hospitality New Zealand tourism spokesperson and National Treasurer, said the latest figures showed the Government was serious about supporting tourism and its approach was paying dividends.
“The Government has poured new investment into growing emerging markets, attracting more international events, attracting very high value visitors and lifting the tourism yield overall. The hospitality industry is excited to see growth in the emerging markets of Indonesia and Latin America, growth and rebalancing in the Chinese market and, perhaps most importantly, the number of Australians travelling across the ditch trending up strongly, thanks in part to successful new tourism campaigns and more flights from Perth. That is all good news for the more than 2,400 hospitality businesses represented by HNZ,” said Mr Morrison.
Mr Morrison noted the recent growth was even before the much anticipated launch of The Desolation of Smaug. “Like most Kiwis, the hospo industry is excited about the impending release of the second Hobbit movie, both as a film and all the people it will bring to our shores. Like the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the first Hobbit film, this movie is proven to attract thousands of people to New Zealand and our local businesses,” said Mr Morrison.
Hospitality New Zealand members already provide visitors with quality accommodation, food and refreshments. However, Mr Morrison said HNZ was determined to make finding top class hospitality easier with the launch of their new website -www.kiwihospitality.co.nz. This mobile friendly website makes it easy for visitors to find restaurants, cafes, bars, hotels, motels and more.
“Hospitality New Zealand supports the tourism sector because more visitors means more customers. It is a win-win situation and we, as a responsible industry, are prepared to do our part in creating a great New Zealand experience for visiting tourists,” said Mr Morrison.
Weather god shines on Taste of Auckland
(15 November 2013)
Clear skies and the warm glow of the late afternoon sun blessed the launch of Taste of Auckland 2013 last night.
Aucklanders responded by taking a well-earned break over a refreshing glass of something summery while the band jazzed up the moment.
And as the evening wore on patrons moved from their sun-basking positions to the restaurant marquees for a hearty feed of delicious tastes and a lesson in culinary skills.
After buying a taste of something to remember the night by they drifted away leaving behind a donation to DineAid on their way out the gate.
The perfect night for a perfect Taste of Auckland. Make sure you check it out. Taste of Auckland - November 14-17. See more...
Stunning line-up at Taste of Auckland’s Fisher & Paykel Chef’s Kitchen
(11 November 2013)
The best of the best of Kiwi chefs will grace the stage at the Taste of Auckland’s Fisher & Paykel Chef’s Kitchen this year, Victoria Park from 14 – 17 November.
For the second year, celebrity chef and My Food Bag owner Nadia Lim plays host to the impressive array of chefs who will be demonstrating how to cook their favourite dishes in front of a live audience.
“The Fisher & Paykel Chef’s Kitchen was an absolute blast last year and I can’t wait to MC it again this year. With such talented chefs and exciting dishes, we have so much fun up on stage and I always end up with great cooking tips to take home myself,” says Lim.Demonstrating how to cook their favourite dishes will be the likes of Des Harris of Clooney, the 2013 Chef of the Year, Sachie Nomura of Sachie’s Kitchen, Michael Dearth and Glen File of Baduzzi, and Shane Yardley of Fish Restaurant. Read more...
Queenstown’s multi award-winning Eichardt’s Private Hotel voted world’s best ski resort hotel
(11 November 2013)
Eichardt’s Private Hotel Queenstown has once again been lauded as the world’s most exceptional boutique hotel taking out the prestigious title of world’s best luxury ski resort hotel at the 2013 World Luxury Hotel Awards.
Announced at the annual black-tie Gala Ceremony in Thailand on November 1, 2013, the awards recognise ‘excellence in the luxury hotel market across the globe’.
Eichardt’s Private Hotel fought stiff competition from some of the world’s top luxury ski resort properties across the globe to win the celebrated accolade.
Eichardt’s Private Hotel owner Andrew Cox said it was “a huge honour” to receive the global award which is voted for by international tour operators, travel agents and hotel guests.
“This is such a wonderful achievement. Sarah and I are incredibly proud of the support Eichardt’s has received from the industry and past guests,” said Mr Cox. Read more...