ADDRESS: 163 Tennyson St, Napier South
CONTACT: 06 650 1115
Check website for opening hours
MAINS: $44 – $46

SCORE: 18/20

Anybody who can elevate the humble choko to a place of excellence is a big winner in our books. And here, in this cleverly refurbished heritage building, we find chef/co- owner Sam Clark (pictured above with co-owner Florencia Menehem) skilfully doing just that in the form of a raw fish dish with a support crew of mandarin kosho and nori. The playful approach gives a now-commonplace dish a deliciously new lease on life and creates a crucial point of difference. And so we continue with a dish of lamb rump with smoked shank that is rich and powerful, glossy and gorgeous. The planets align for the dark chocolate sorbet dessert, too. Central Fire Station Bistro allows Sam to show off his classic cooking skills, his measured, playful application and his deep understanding of his customer base. This is a super restaurant where flavour and quality are paramount.

IN BRIEF: A distinctive eatery serving superb local flavour


At Leefield Station, we’re dedicated to championing our unique and amazing land, ensuring every animal, insect, vine and tree thrives together in perfect harmony. We know if we look after this environment, it will give us everything back for generations to come. That’s our passion and our difference. We are proud to sponsor the Best Regional Restaurant, which celebrates the passion and difference of those dedicated to creating great hospitality in our regions.


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With special thanks to all our 2023 partners