The stylish epicentre of Tauranga’s rapidly developing food and drink culture.


This is a kitchen clearly not afraid to mix it up, using their skills in baking, dry ageing and foraging to add interest as well as substance to dishes. The bistro menu is built around a commitment to sustainability and showcasing quality New Zealand produce. But the experience involves more than what’s on the plate: well- concocted cocktails, a comprehensive wine list and attentive service in an iconic location in the former post office building are also important trademarks.


There are two ways of ordering: a traditional three- course à la carte menu or the more adventurous ‘Kitchen Experience’, which takes the diner on a journey of dishes using produce sourced from local farmers, growers and fishers. The superb venison with burnt eggplant, mandarin, white soy butter and Szechuan pickled cucumber is a highlight – the venison packed with meaty flavour. Chatham Island crayfish, served with kaffir lime and butternut pumpkin curry, charred brassicas and wild rice was a mélange of strong flavours – but the rich, buttery crayfish shone through, making the premium price much more palatable.


Executive chef Perrin Yates is young, clever and passionate, fully in tune with modern food trends. Yates joined Clarence Bistro late in 2020 and has already stamped his mark on the Tauranga dining scene. One to watch.


Yates has highly qualified Frenchman Thibaut Renault and Swiss pastry chef Sebastian Fitzi, both trained in the classic European tradition, at his side. Their attention to detail and classic plate composition never come at the expense of the flavour factor that pervades Yates’ menu. Out front, the highly professional Ashley Mackintosh runs a tight ship, ensuring a warm welcome, an upbeat vibe and seamless service delivery.


Perrin Yates is not afraid to extend the boundaries of contemporary trends – and takes diners along for the ride. He is committed to the development of young chefs and provides regular opportunities for them to step into the limelight.