Make a beeline for this small restaurant sitting comfortably in the heart of the central shopping centre. The décor is as warm as the welcome, the service endearingly quirky and the menu, ever diligent in its promotion of locally sourced seasonal ingredients, has something for all tastes. Chef-owner Jude Messenger (pictured) and his team are not afraid to tempt with game such as their signature rabbit terrine which is delicate and flavourful and in complete harmony with the pickled mushroom salad, while the perfectly pink lamb is moist and beautifully seasoned in a stunning master stock. This is a menu filled with well-chosen New Zealand ingredients treated with integrity and cooked with a very high level of care. The Bistro is much loved by both the diners of Taupo and visitors alike and deservedly so, as it’s a gem.

IN BRIEF Much-loved bistro delivers simple satisfaction