ADDRESS: 43 Ballarat St, Queenstown
CONTACT: 03 442 9393
Check website for opening hours
MAINS: $42 – $52
SET MENU: $155pp five courses

SCORE: 17.5/20

For a textbook study in dedication, you need look no further than the deeds of Michael Bickford. The Napier-raised, Australia-trained head chef’s commitment to local ingredients means he eschews coconuts. Hence the ceviche is served with hempseed milk instead. Location, location, location is one drawcard of this modern, light-filled restaurant which is tucked away in the centre of Queenstown with an urban forest of native trees surrounding it. Sit down and order yourself a Speights to start (that’s a Speights sourdough with Marmite butter and fried yeast). Graduate to the mains and, depending on what’s in season and available, you’re looking at blue cod, blackfoot pāua, wakame, cauliflower and kombu oil. Or maybe you might try the Lake Ōhau wagyu from the Mackenzie Basin. The wine list showcases local, national and beyond.

IN BRIEF: A local food story made extremely good


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