Popular NZ chef Michael Meredith closing restaurant to focus on fatherhood

Michael Meredith is renowned for innovation and degustation menus.
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Michael Meredith is renowned for innovation and degustation menus.

Venerable chef Michael Meredith is closing his Auckland restaurant this year to spend time with his fourth daughter, due in February.

Since opening in 2007, Merediths Restaurant has consistently rated among the best in the country. That includes being one of only a handful of restaurants nation-wide to receive a three-hat rating in Cuisine magazine's annual Good Food Awards. 

That success came at a cost to his family, he said, so the father-of-three wanted to spend time with his newest daughter in her early days.  

Michael Meredith can often be found packing school lunches at Eat My Lunch.
DAVID WHITE/STUFF

Michael Meredith can often be found packing school lunches at Eat My Lunch.

"It's hard being a chef and trying to be at home," Meredith said. 

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"My kids, they were there but the focus and pressure on me was somewhere else."

Unfortunately his relationship with his partner did not survive, because of the pressure, he said. That partner, and his three older children, now live in Australia.    

"I'm very fortunate to be able to step away now and I can make this choice to enjoy the birth of my daughter."

Meredith said his next project would have a "massive social side to it", but kept quiet on the details. There may be some pop-up restaurants in the future too. 

Meredith founded Eat My Lunch in 2015, with business partner Lisa King, and recently expanded to create dinners too. Meredith was also named as consultant chef to Air New Zealand, alongside chef Peter Gordon, in 2016.

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Staff were notified of Meredith's intention about a month ago and the Dominion Rd site would be taken over by another food business, with a "new style" of food, he said. Merediths will close for good at Christmas. 

 - Stuff

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