It might be a while off yet, but Pacific Coast Beverages, a start-up microbrewery, is starting work on a vineyard, courtyard bistro, distillery and brewery, to be opened later this year on the Mangawhai Harbour.


One of Wellington’s most revered coffee roasters, Havana Coffee, has opened on St Georges Rd in Parnell with an open-door roastery giving a glimpse of the magic. We told you something was afoot at Candela on K Rd – its new late-night spot Barcita continues the theme of Spanish- inspired bites in a moody, intimate space. Next-level fish and chips come courtesy of Nate’s Plaice in Grey Lynn, which offers a sustainable seafood menu using fish caught fresh locally – it’s headed by Nathan Ward, who recently opened One Fish Two Fish in New Windsor. On game day, head to Schapiro’s in Eden Terrace, Auckland’s American-style sports bar by Otis Schapiro (co-owner and head chef at Lilian). Robby Hekkers, a former barista from Grey Lynn’s late-lamented Crumb, has opened Lucky Strike in Mt Eden. Nothing goes together like a burger and a beer, and when it’s craft beer and the goods from Birkenhead’s Real Burger, what more is there to say? The folk behind Newmarket’s Leafe and Journal in Ormiston have banded together in Amble + Birch, bringing all-day dining to Plunket Ave in Manukau. Great news, Cassia is back – the Fort Lane favourite finally reopened after spending a month closed due to flood damage and it has a new menu packed with new dishes such as lamb kulcha with chilli and coconut. We’ve loved the Parade pop-up on Ponsonby Rd, so we’re beyond delighted that it has a permanent spot right next door – a fitting home for some of the best burgers you can wrap your hands around. Already a hit in Christchurch, Town Tonic comes to Auckland with a smart new venue on Constellation Drive. What was The Dominion pub in Mt Eden has had a spiffy new facelift, emerging as The Bridgman, with chandeliers and crushed velvet giving a super-luxe vibe to the old building and a definitely- better-than-just-pub-grub menu. Chur Bae in a former florists at the City Works Depot is the baby of the Bae brothers, with a cool and casual offering of Kiwi classics with a Korean take. For the most indulgent dirty dogs in town, be sure to see the fourth outpost of Good Dog Bad Dog in Onehunga Mall, which has all the favourites including mac ‘n’ cheese dogs, chilli cheese dogs and fried Oreos for dessert. Tacos, nachos – no problem at De Nada Mexican Eatery & Taqueria, newly opened on Mt Eden Rd. The Churchill is back – yes, gin with a view returns at Auckland’s highest rooftop bar at the Four Points by Sheraton on Queen St.


Taranaki-born Haedyn Woollaston joins the team at Ernest after a long spell overseas and then a stint at The Old Forge Kitchen in Te Aroha.


For tangy, sweet, crispy, crunchy chaat and other South Asian street food, head to Chaat Street in Victoria St, and while you’re there don’t forget to try a chilli margarita, bubblegum martini or street- style drinks such as milky chai. Fortune Favours has scooted over to Miramar next door to Gorilla Burger – you can bring your burger through to have with your beer. Dunedin favourite burger joint Re Burger opens in Wellington’s Tory St, bringing next-level over-oversized burgers and fries, too (if you can fit any in!). The hardworking team at Abandoned Brewery have realised the dream of a shiny new large-scale brewery and pop-up tap room in Porirua. Farewell to Yanbu Vang, whose Tibetan and Dubai-cuisine restaurant Gunusu closed its doors recently. Hugely successful Middle Eastern pop-up Kisa now has a permanent home in Cuba St, where the team behind Mr Go’s and Ombra celebrate cuisine from Turkey and the wider Middle East, including Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Israel. Make Flùr on Cuba St part of your new morning routine for superb freshly baked, handmade pastries by Sarah Mackenzie (formerly of Rita and Floriditas).


The old Fermentist Brewery in Sydenham is now home to independent brewery Two Thumb, which promises a combo of brew bar and restaurant. Until the restaurant is up and running, the truly extraordinary craft beer can be paired with bites by Illicit Food, whose craft truck will operate on the site in the short term.


Local foodie personality Sharyn Mathias has sold much-loved food store and café Florence‘s. As yet, Sharyn can’t share secrets on Florence’s future, save to say it will morph into a fantastic eatery open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.