Cuisine Magazine celebrated the best of the best in the NZ culinary world when they handed out their awards for 2012 at the Auckland Art Gallery on Monday night.
Luminaries from NZ's best restaurants flooded into the gallery to see the winners announced. Among them was Sean Connelly who had jetted in from Oz with his Sydney based wife Joanne who isn't often seen on this side of the Tasman.
It was a big night for Connelly with his restaurant - The Grill - taking out the supreme award for NZ Restaurant of the Year, as well as Best New Restaurant.
The judges raved about its simple, delicious dishes, including the crumbed duck egg with jamon and creamed spinach, sirloin aged on the bone with Ortiz anchovy butter, and Connelly's famous duck-fat chips.
Also among those honoured on the night was another institution in the restaurant world - Tony Astle, who received a lifetime achievement award.
Astle was dressed appropriately in his chef's uniform, as he'd been called down from the kitchen to attend the ceremony.
'I hope we don't get any reviewers in tonight' he laughed as he accepted his award, saying he'd 'loved every minute' of his 40-year career.
- © Fairfax NZ News