Rata oozes the essence of New Zealand: warm and relaxed, yet elegant and served with a pinch of fun. Co-owners Josh Emett (pictured) and Fleur Caulton have hit the sweet spot, serving up thoughtful food brimming with inspiration from the southern landscape. A cheeky Southland cheese roll tips the nod to that classic sarnie, though you’ve never had one quite like this with bitter greens and pickled pumpkin. Canterbury truffles enhance beef cheeks, Cloudy Bay clams come with wakame and Stewart Island paua stuff tortellini to serve alongside fermented kohrabi. It’s understated, gracious food served with care, showing creativity and wit. Friendly and professional staff take you seamlessly through the options, including wines from the local region as well as some more unusual choices.

IN BRIEF Chic setting for elegant, inspired dining