AUCKLAND

Pici founders Gemma Hareb, Jono Thevenard and Kazuya Suzuki have joined forces with chef Fraser Childs in Ooh-Fa specialising in fermented sourdough pizza – head to Dominion Rd to try them out. The best Caribbean food in town is at Nanny’s Eatery in Kingsland, with a taste of the finest jerk chicken with rum barbecue sauce, jalapeño poppers or vegan coconut curry, and an impressive array of rum to go alongside. Ponsonby’s The Dog Spot takes hot dogs up a notch or two (the sausages are from Westmere Butchery) with international-inspired flavours matched with loaded fries. If you love the gorgeous pasta dishes from Remuera’s Spiga, now Spiga Pantry gives you the chance to take their freshly made pasta home.

MOUNT MAUNGANUI

Watch out for seafood specialist Saltwater Seafood Grill & Oyster Bar which promises a seafood market feel and kai moana prepared over a fire grill – due to open in late October.

WELLINGTON

Say hello to Margot, an intimate new bar and restaurant led by Juno Miers and Tom Adam in the space in Newtown formerly occupied by Mason – they’ve also taken on Next Door, the bar which is, um, next door. InterContinental Wellington welcomes Carl Maunder (right) as executive chef – he brings 20-years’ experience working with chefs including Simon Gault and Sean Connolly. The café at Wellington Zoo has been taken over by Tom and Kate Hutchison and Cheryl Jolly of Mount Victoria mainstay Capitol, who are now offering a house-made, seasonal brunch and lunch menu for zoo-goers and Newtown locals. Now you can enjoy all your Syrian favourites in the CBD as Damascus relocates from Brooklyn. The Jaya’s has the intriguing promise of natural, organic, boutique New Zealand wines matched with Kiwi-Indian sharing plates. Falafel Express is a new outpost of Café Laz on Cuba St.

CHRISTCHURCH

Upstairs at the Riverside Market you’ll find Nikkei, offering a combination of Japanese cooking skills and Peruvian cuisine. For Korean food on the go seek out JaeJu food truck, the new venture of Cian Curtin, ex Hali head chef. Welcome new owner Michael Rowland Jones who has taken over much-loved Brigittes in Merivale.

ARTHUR’S PASS

Craig Martin of Native Kitchen becomes resident chef at luxury retreat Flockhill Homestead in the Craigieburn Valley.

CROMWELL

Kate and Matt Barnett are bringing a new wine retail outlet and bar, Pinot Junction, to Inniscort St, in the building originally built as a workshop and garage for McNulty Transport. The Cloudy Bay Shed was closed for renovations, but has now reopened with a fresh spring menu – we can’t wait to see what else is on the plans.