ADDRESS: 23 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby, Auckland
CONTACT: 021 379 700
Check website for opening hours
MAINS: $32 – $42

SCORE: 18/20

This corner location on Ponsonby and Hepburn Streets has something of a hit-and-miss reputation in the annals of restaurant lore. The arrival of KOL late last year has seen the records swing back into ‘hit’ territory. That’s hardly a surprise: this is the latest addition to the Sid and Chand Sahrawat whānau. The restaurant’s ethos is ‘fire, food, cocktails’. Their take is to inject inspiration from the Indian chula – an old form of cooking with firewood over a mud or clay stove. Hence, plenty of references to charred and charcoal treatments. Note, too, there’s not a curry in sight, although the vindaloo fries are already developing their own following. The establishment has swiftly earned high regard as much for its cocktails – some serious detours from the usual suspects – as for its food. The staff, not surprisingly, maintain the Sahrawat standards of excellence.

IN BRIEF: Food and cocktails to fire your senses


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