This is the third year in which Cuisine has been media partner for Plate of Origin, an annual competition showcasing chefs from across New Zealand. Hosted in Manawatu, seven local restaurants sought a partnership with a renowned restaurant in a region allocated to them at random. Each partnership created one main dish, highlighting two stellar ingredients, one from each of their regions.

Judging for the third year alongside co-judge Mark Smith (chef-lecturer at Universal College of Learning, Palmerston North), we wanted to ensure that the winning dish not only reflected the hero ingredients but also remained true to the local restaurant and its core customers. This year’s Plate of Origin winning dish did all of this and more. It is with great pleasure that we congratulate Scott Kennedy of Nero, Palmerston North and Kate Fay of Cibo, Auckland for their winning creation ‘Kahuterawa Angus sirloin, flavours of Te Matuku oysters, crispy beef tendons, heirloom tomatoes and sticky beef bonbon’. With memories of the old ‘surf n turf’ at play, this dish features many beautiful elements.

Crisp-fried oysters alongside silky oyster cream pair beautifully with the Angus sirloin coated in kombu, nori seaweed and dried bonito crumb. Beautifully cooked potato gratin ensures that Nero regulars receive their much loved spuds. The melt-in-the-mouth beef bonbon and crunchy olive crumb provide texture and the tangy pickled cabbage and tomatoes cut through the richness of the dish.       

Kate Fay developed her career cooking overseas and then spent time in some of Auckland’s great culinary institutions. In 1999 she joined Cibo in Parnell, one of Auckland’s favourite haunts for those in the know. Over time Kate’s cooking style has evolved through travel and her cooking manages to capture a blend of Asian and European flavours. Kate is Auckland born and raised and is inspired by high-quality, accessible New Zealand ingredients. Her main objective is to capture the essence of primary ingredients and use combinations that enhance and highlight while remaining sensitive to when products are at their best.

Scott Kennedy is a well-known face in the Manawatu restaurant scene having been in the area since he completed his training in the late ’80s. Scott opened his first restaurant, Café Vavasseur, at the young age of 21. Being bold and innovative with beef and lamb is what the locals have come to expect from Scott at Nero. His philosophy is to utilise as much of the animal as possible. Scott has recently been awarded a prestigious lifetime ambassadorship after consistently excelling in the Beef and Lamb Excellence Awards.

Read on to discover our top-scoring Manawatu restaurants for Plate of Origin 2018.
Find more information on Plate Of Origin 2018 at