Cafe chat: Victoria St eateries coming

20:38, Nov 26 2013
COMING SOON: Masa Otani from Yamagen before the restaurant was destroyed in the 2011 earthquakes, reopening on Victoria St.


Works are progressing well at 53 Victoria St where Yamagen (formerly at the Crowne Plaza Hotel) and Aroy Thai will be setting up shop. Aroy Thai was a tenant at 53 pre-quake, and is set to take possession of part of the ground floor rebuild. Chef Jamnong Radburnd is currently working at King of Snake until Aroy Thai reopens. Also on the ground floor will be Japanese favourite Yamagen, and a cafe run by the owners of Maharaja Indian restaurant on Papanui Rd. Building owner David Abbott said the process has been a long one, but they were anticipating a mid-2014 opening.


Across from 53 Victoria St, the build is still progressing nicely for 50 Victoria St, where The Bog Irish bar is hoping to open early next year. The former Cashel St favourite was destroyed along with the rest of Cashel Mall in the earthquakes, but the new Bog promises a return of the old watering hole. News on the design and fitout of the new bar is being closely guarded, but details will be released any time soon. The Bog is owned by the owners of the Speight's Ale Houses on Bealey Ave and in Ferrymead, and The Bog in Dunedin.


Go a bit rural this December and check out the Ohoka Farmers Market on December 13 and 20 (cnr Mill and Whites roads). A range of foods and crafts is on offer, from Christmas ham, to locally grown cherries. On December 20 the market will be giving away a bag of produce for a lucky market-goer. See



New owners of Volstead in Riccarton have made an excellent move and are now hosting That Mexican Guy food truck four days a week (rather than just Thursdays). Mexican is now available Thursday and Friday 6pm-9.30pm, and weekends midday-9.30pm.


Volstead itself has also extended its trading hours and is open weekdays from 4pm-11pm, and weekends from midday-11pm. See


Nutritionist and author Dr Libby Weaver will be available for signings and to meet fans at Whitcoulls, Northlands Shopping Centre on Friday. Slots are 1-1.15pm, 3-3.15pm, and 5-5.15pm. She will sign copies of her books (free event). Also in town soon is celebrity chef Brett McGregor. McGregor will be at Ballantynes (Re:Start Mall) at 5.30pm on December 1 where he will demonstrate recipes from his new book, A Taste of Home, answer questions, and sign books. This event costs $20 and tickets can be booked by phoning 03 379 7400.


Mission Estate Winery in Hawkes Bay is celebrating 50 years of making methode traditionnelle by selling 50 bottles of bubbles (dubbed Fete) for the same price they sold for in 1963 when the first vintage was bottled - in today's money, that's $2.20 a pop. The Fete bubbles used pinot gris grapes harvested in 2010. On December 9, 9am, 50 bottles at this low price will be up for sale on If you miss out, supermarkets will stock it at $19.99.


Mobile coffee giant Cafe2U has announced its intentions to continue its worldwide takeover by expanding into New Zealand. The coffee van franchise has 200 outlets worldwide in Australia, Europe and America. The franchise is offering South Island coffee nuts and business beginners to get a foot in the cafe door, and run their own van or coffee truck. The franchise includes van, equipment and product. About 7 new franchises are expected in the South Island in the next year. See


The correct email address for ordering a treat from Cakes by Anna is Any orders sent to the incorrect email address printed in last week's Cafe Chat will need to be resent to this email.


The Press