New capital eateries appear in food guide
Four new Wellington restaurants have made their first appearance in the Cuisine Good Food Guide 2014, as the capital embraces the casual dining explosion.
"It's been a long time since Wellington has had newcomers in the awards, so to have four this year is really exciting," Cuisine editor Sarah Nicholson said.
The newcomers from the capital are Wholesale Boot Company (WBC), Charley Noble, Ombra and Taylors on Jackson, in Petone.
"Restaurants such as Ombra are very on-trend - it's a casual place, there are no bookings, it offers relaxed food to share over drinks," Nicholson said.
"This is the type of restaurant that is constantly busy right now," Nicholson said.
She described Taylors on Jackson as "a game-changer for the suburb of Petone".
A total of nine Wellington restaurants appeared in the guide this year, compared with seven in 2013. Sixteen new eateries made the cut nationwide.
Auckland's Sidart was named restaurant of the year, with head judge Kerry Tyack describing its menu as "art on a plate".
"Over the past year, Sid Sahrawat's food at Sidart has come into its own and truly excelled," Tyack explained.
Wellington's Ortega Fish Shack & Bar was named runnerup in the American Express best specialist restaurant category.
It was the 10th year of New Zealand's only national restaurant awards, which had a chef's hat rating system that is also used by the renowned Good Food Guides in Australia.
Wellington institution Logan Brown showed its staying power as the only one of the capital's restaurants to get two chef's hats.
The results were announced last night at St-Matthew-in-the- City in Auckland.
THIRTEEN OF THE BEST
Restaurants in the Cuisine Good Food Guide 2014
Capitol: "Deliciously rustic Italian- inspired food."
Charley Noble (one hat): "Simple yet well-constructed dishes."
Matterhorn: "Current head chef James Pask continues the spirit of innovation."
Ombra: "Clearly a place people want to be."
The Larder (one hat): "A sense of relaxed enjoyment pervades the homely dining room."
WBC: "The service is friendly, the fare is no-fuss and modern."
Ortega Fish Shack & Bar (one hat): "The food is sophisticated and technically accomplished."
Taylors on Jackson (one hat): "The perfect choice for a romantic dinner."
Logan Brown (two hats): "The elegance, opulence and sense of grandeur of Logan Brown cannot be overstated."
Elephant Hill (one hat): "A sense of lightness has been created in this striking seaside restaurant."
Black Barn Bistro: "One of the Hawke's Bay Wine Trail's undisputed stars."
Mister D: "Now well and truly bonded into the lives of Hawke's Bay diners."
Ten24: "Prices remain remarkably reasonable."
The Dominion Post