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Kiwi restaurants a cut above the rest for Beef and Lamb

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172 restaurants, nationwide, received the iconic Beef and Lamb Excellence Award. Chef Peter Gordon: ‘Hugely proud’ of world-class New Zealand beef and lamb.

172 restaurants have received the longest running culinary award in New Zealand, the Beef and Lamb Excellence Award for 2019 after a tough and rigorous assessment process. Now in their 23rd year, the Excellence Awards recognise the skill, expertise and talent of our greatest chefs and together with the iconic gold plate, signpost to consumers where they can try the pinnacle of beef and lamb.

Peter Gordon, arguably New Zealand’s greatest export, has been wowing the folk of London and New Zealand with his remarkable dishes and has travelled the world plying his trade – but rates Kiwi chefs amongst the best in terms of cooking with beef and lamb.


“I have eaten at restaurants around the world and I’m hugely proud of the world-class beef and lamb we have here in New Zealand.”


“I put this down to two factors; we have access to these wonderful meats, that are grass-fed and reared outdoors, giving them a delicious texture and flavour.”


“But it also comes down to our chefs. They are talented, creative, dedicated, adventurous – I could go on throwing adjectives at them – but the proof is there for anyone to experience at restaurants up and down the country.”


After an application process that saw over 230 restaurants apply, an army of more than 100 independent, culinary-trained assessors were sent out to ‘mystery shop’ the restaurants and return their verdicts on whether the dishes had met the standard to be labelled as a leader of beef and lamb cuisine.

New Zealand is renowned for its world-class beef and lamb by locals and visitors alike. Shaun Clouston, Executive Chef at the Wellington institution Logan Brown, has experienced first hand the pull New Zealand beef and lamb can have on international visitors.

“I once had a customer who saw a lamb dish from Logan Brown featured in a magazine. He then got on a plane from Japan, landed in Auckland and flew straight to Wellington just to have New Zealand lamb.”

“The beef and lamb dishes I have tried by other Kiwi chefs are phenomenal – verses what I’ve had elsewhere, they are unbelievably good. Just the other day I had probably the best lamb I’ve ever eaten in my life at a restaurant right here in New Zealand.

“I think what really helps us as chefs is access to fantastic product, this is where it all begins. It’s difficult to group all chefs into the same basket but we are all able to draw from the world’s best product.”

But for any self-confessed foodie, the proof is in the eating. Anyone keen to experience how good we Kiwis are at cooking with beef and lamb should head to the restaurant directory on and try for themselves.


Full Beef and Lamb Excellence Awards 2019 Restaurant List

*Check out featured RA member restaurants & cafes.


Marsden Estate Winery, Kerikeri
The Duke of Marlborough Hotel,  Russell
Te Koha Lodge,  Te Ngaere
The Quay Kitchen,  Whangarei
Number 8 Restaurant & Bar,  Whangarei


*Cibo Parnell, Parnell
Soljans Estate Winery, Kumeu
Knights on Albert, Stamford Plaza Hotel, Central Auckland
*MASU, Central Auckland
21 Days Bar & Brasserie, Browns Bay
*Annabelles, Mission Bay
Giraffe, Central Auckland
Manly Bar & Grill, Whangaparaoa
*The Square, Novotel Auckland Airport, Auckland
Mr Toms, Ponsonby
Queen’s Head Bar & Eatery, Four Points by Sheraton, Central Auckland
*Oyster and Chop, Central Auckland
*Vineyard Café, Villa Maria Estate, South Auckland
*Regatta Bar & Eatery, Takapuna
*Jervois Steakhouse, Herne Bay
*Pilkingtons, Central Auckland
*Ampersand Eatery, Central Auckland
*Bracu, Bombay
*Black Cottage Café, Coatsville
Rothko, Matakana
Plume Restaurant, Matakana
*Casita Miro, Waiheke Island
*Cable Bay Vineyards, Waiheke Island
*The Archive Bar & Bistro, Waiheke Island
*Tantalus Estate, Waiheke Island


*Pepper Tree Restaurant & Bar, Coromandel Town
Koru at Rapaura, Thames

Bay of Plenty

Central Park Bar & Kitchen, Katikati
Latitude 37, Mt. Maunganui
*Mount Bistro, Mt. Maunganui
*Tay Street Beach Café, Mt. Maunganui
The Crown & Badger, Tauranga
Halo Lounge & Dining, Trinity Wharf Tauranga, Tauranga
*Bistro at Falls Retreat, Waihi
Waihi Beach Hotel, Waihi Beach


Alpha Street Kitchen & Bar, Cambridge
Zealong Tea Estate, Gordonton
*Palate Restaurant, Hamilton
Bluestone Steak House, Hamilton
Furnace Restaurant & Bar, Hamilton
*Smith & McKenzie Steakhouse, Hamilton
The Redoubt Bar & Eatery, Matamata
The Wooden Farmer Restaurant, Putaruru
Fahrenheit Restaurant & Bar, Te Awamutu
*Huhu Café, Waitomo


Dukes Restaurant, Princes Gate Hotel, Rotorua
Stolen Bike Café, Rotorua
*Mokoia Restaurant, Waiora Lakeside Spa Resort, Rotorua
Regent of Rotorua Restaurant & Wine Bar, Rotorua

Taupo / National Park

*Ruapehu Room, The Chateau, National Park
Victoria’s Café Kitchen Bar, Taupo
*Edgewater Restaurant, Millennium Hotel & Resort Manuels, Taupo
*The Brantry, Taupo
Plateau Bar & Eatery, Taupo
The Bistro, Taupo
Bistro Lago, Hilton Lake Taupo, Taupo
Tongariro Lodge, Turangi


*Gusto Restaurant Café & Bar, New Plymouth
The Orangery Restaurant, Quality Hotel, New Plymouth
Bella Vita Restaurant, New Plymouth
*Gover St Bistro, New Plymouth
Meat and Liquor, New Plymouth
Fork n Knife, New Plymouth
*Table Restaurant, Nice Hotel, New Plymouth
The Good Home, New Plymouth
Stony River Boutique Hotel, Okato


The Barrelhouse, Dannevirke
Amayjen The Restaurant, Feilding
Nero Restaurant, Palmerston North
Table 188, Palmerston North
*The Fat Farmer, Palmerston North
*Aberdeen on Broadway, Palmerston North

Hawke’s Bay

Mangapapa Hotel, Havelock North
*Namaskar Indian Restaurant, Havelock North
Emporium Eatery & Bar, Art Deco Masonic Hotel, Napier
*Philippine Asian Kitchen, Westshore Beach Inn Hotel, Napier


Wharekauhau Country Estate, Featherston
Union Square, Martinborough Hotel, Martinborough
Pinocchio, Martinborough
Tirohana Estate, Martinborough
Eatery 10 Restaurant, Martinborough

Nelson / Marlborough

Harakeke Restaurant, Awaroa Lodge, Abel Tasman NP
Quench Restaurant & Bar, Chateau Marlborough, Blenheim
*Saint Clair Vineyard Kitchen, Blenheim
Kai Restaurant, Kaiteriteri
Precinct Dining Co., Nelson
Comida Café & Restaurant, Nelson
Cod & Lobster Brasserie, Nelson
Foredeck Restaurant, Bay of Many Coves, Queen Charlotte Sound


Sea Salt Café & Eatery, Wellington
Artisan Dining House, Bolton Hotel, Wellington
*Cashmere Lounge, Wellington
*Grill Meats Beer, Wellington
*Logan Brown, Wellington
*Noble Rot Wine Bar, Wellington
*Olive Restaurant, Wellington
One 80 Restaurant, Copthorne Hotel Oriental Bay, Wellington
Vivant! Restaurant & Bar, Ibis Hotel, Wellington
Hummingbird Eatery & Bar, Wellington
Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant, Wellington
*Chameleon Restaurant, InterContinental Hotel, Wellington
*Bellamy’s by Logan Brown, Wellington
*Boulcott Street Bistro, Wellington
*La Bella Italia, Wellington
Portlander Bar & Grill, Rydges Hotel, Wellington
Jackson Café Bistro, Lower Hutt
*Shed 5 Restaurant & Bar, Wellington
*Tinakori Bistro, Wellington


Braided Rivers Restaurant & Bar, Ashburton
*The Lake House, Ashburton
*The Polo Bar & Restaurant, Christchurch
Costas Taverna, Christchurch
*Pescatore, The George, Christchurch
*50 Bistro, The George, Christchurch
*Strawberry Fare, Christchurch
Chillingworth Road, Christchurch
Merrin Street Brewery Bar, Christchurch
Terra Viva Café, Christchurch
The Old Vicarage, Christchurch
The Craft Embassy, Christchurch
5th Street, Christchurch
Cook ‘n’ with Gas, Christchurch
Pattersons Restaurant & Bar, Commodore Hotel, Christchurch
The Flamming Rabbit, Christchurch
Christchurch Tramway Restaurant, Christchurch
The Happening Bar & Kitchen, Christchurch
*Café Valentino, Christchurch
Coasters Tavern, Christchurch
The Square, Novotel Christchurch, Christchurch
The Good Home Ferrymead, Christchurch
No. 31 Restaurant, Hanmer Springs
Governors Bay Hotel, Lyttleton

Dunedin / North Otago

McGavins Restaurant & Bar, Mercure Dunedin Leisure Lodge, Dunedin
Bacchus Wine Bar & Restaurant, Dunedin
Ombrellos Kitchen & Bar, Dunedin
*Vault 21, Dunedin
Prohibition Smokehouse, Dunedin
*Cucina, Oamaru
T Bar Restaurant, Brydone Hotel, Oamaru

Central Otago

*Millhouse Restaurant, Millbrook Resort, Arrowtown
*Kobe Cuisine, Millbrook Resort, Arrowtown
*Carrick Winery Restaurant, Bannockburn
Olivers Restaurant, Clyde
*Pitches Store, Ophir
*Captains Restaurant, Queenstown
*Prime Lakefront Restaurant & Bar, Queenstown
MacKenzies Restaurant, the Heritage Hotel, Queenstown
True South Dining Room, The Rees Hotel, Queenstown
Wakatipu Grill, Hilton Hotel, Queenstown
Muskets and Moonshine, Queenstown
*Roaring Megs, Queenstown
Observatory Restaurant, Millennium Hotel, Queenstown
Bistro Gentil, Wanaka
Wanaka Gourmet Kitchen, Wanaka
Cardrona Hotel, Cardrona

South Canterbury/Mackenzie District

The Dubliner, Methven
Carnegies, Fairlie
The Panorama Room, Mt Cook
The Hermitage Hotel, Mt. Cook
Stronechrubie, Mt. Somers
Poppies Café, Twizel

South Coast

The Whistling Frog, Catlins
Paddington Arms, Invercargill
Redcliff Restaurant & Bar, Te Anau
The Fat Duck, Te Anau
Two Fat Stags, Waikawa

West Coast

Matheson Café, Fox Glacier
Waterwheel Restaurant, Stations Inn, Hokitika

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