Bartender | Vodka Room, Ponsonby

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Vodka Room is one of Ponsonby’s newest venue.
Owner owned and operated, we serve up Russian inspired food and drinks in a beautiful and unique setting.

We have an excellent opportunity for a highly motivated Bartender to join this busy team.

To be successful you will be:

  • a true team player and have a wealth of experience behind the bar.
  • You’ll be joining a very close knit team so you will need to have a friendly, easy to get along with attitude.
  • You will have an absolute passion for creating delicious cocktails and have an outstanding knowledge of the classics and the basics of cocktails.
  • You will need to be a true professional who works well under pressure and is a strong communicator.

If you feel you have what it takes and are either a New Zealand Citizen or PR, please send your CV to

Cocktail Bartender | The Blind Finch, Ohakune

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The Blind Finch Hamburgeria in Ohakune is looking for an experienced cocktail bartender to work alongside the current Restaurant manager the remainder of the 2018 Summer Season with a possibility to carry on for the Winter Season.

This is a Full-Time position. Starting asap or by negotiation.

You must have previous cocktail making, front of house/waiter and Barista experience and be able to work well as part of a team.

Good English skills are a must as you will be dealing directly with customers. Must hold current Duty Manager Certificate

Remuneration: $16-$20/ hour

Please apply with CV to  be considered for the role.

Check us out on facebook or our website for more.

New CEO for Villa Maria

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Villa Maria Estate has announced the appointment of Abe Salt as Chief Executive Officer. Salt will take over from Sir George Fistonich who has spent 55 years at the helm. Fistonich will continue to have a hands-on role in the company as Founder & President.  Salt will report to Sir George and will commence as CEO on March 5, 2018.

“Due to Villa Maria’s success as a major player globally, my ambassador role has become extremely time consuming,” says Sir George Fistonich. “As the CEO, Abe will be able to manage the important day to day operations and strategic priorities for the company. This will allow me to concentrate on my global brand ambassadorial role and drive other large projects such as the development of our new winery and retail centre in Hawkes Bay.”

Salt is an avid wine enthusiast and is passionate about the wine industry. He has undertaken wine education courses with the Wine & Spirits Education Trust and University of Adelaide and has also participated in a wide range of social wine education programmes, such as International Chardonnay and Pinot Masterclasses.

Salt joins Villa Maria with 15 years’ experience across the wine industry, investment banking and strategic advisory. Most recently, he was Principal at Iron Gate Consulting where he focused on providing strategic advice to the wine industry.

Prior to Iron Gate Consulting, Salt spent more than five years at Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) where he was Global Head of Strategy. During his time at TWE, he led significant transactions and implemented key strategic changes for the business. He served on the Steering Committee for TWE’s global supply chain optimisation programme, driving route to market changes in key regions. Salt was also responsible for delivering TWE’s annual five-year plan, including sales and marketing plans by brand and region. In New Zealand, he led TWE’s acquisition of its Matua Marlborough winery.

Salt has experience in each of Villa Maria’s key export markets including the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States, Asia and Australia. He also has experience working with luxury brands, such as Penfolds.

He holds degrees in Law and Commerce and post-graduate qualifications in finance and is married with two children. Salt will relocate from Melbourne to Auckland for the role.

“I am delighted that we have found someone with such a passion for wine together with a wealth of experience in FMCG global strategy,” says Fistonich. “We are thrilled to have Abe join us for Villa Maria’s next chapter and help us build on our successes to date.”

Villa Maria exports to more than 60 countries globally and in 2017 it was ranked fourth most admired wine brand in the world by Drinks International, the only New Zealand winery to make the top 5 list.

Alpino Cucina e Vino’s Italian soul food wins the day

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NZ Premium Foods and Service Foods recently awarded the talented Noel Cimadom, owner and operator at Alpino Cucina e Vino in Cambridge first prize for his teams’ exquisite menu entries into their foodies for food lovers photography competition.


Above: Alpino team with Noel Cimadom rear, Rachael Speedy NZ Premium Foods centre and Jules Scheurich Service Foods right.

Rachael Speedy of NZ Premium Foods and Jules Scheurich of Service Foods, dropped in to present the prize and meet the vibrant and engaging chef and staff at Alpino.

Cimadom is a Restaurant Association member who immigrated from Italy to New Zealand in 2012 says “the successful ethos behind Alpino is to deliver Italian soul food that everyone loves and the foodies product range remind him of the fresh flavours he used to use in his mother’s kitchen back in Italy”.

Cimadom is adding more strings to his bow having recently purchased the Clarence Hotel and Bistro in Tauranga as well as planning to launch a new Japanese restaurant this winter – so stay tuned to this exciting, internationally trained culinary team.


Cook, Barista & Front Of House | Hahei Beach Cafe, Whitianga

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Come stay in the beautiful heart of the Coromandel at Hahei Beach surrounded by majestic beaches and outstanding adventures.

We are on the search for a great Cook/Baker at Intermediate or Senior level for the Hahei Beach Café .

Some great daytime shifts available for the right person.
Also our Uni students have finally left us for their studies so we also have Front of House wait staff positions prefer with Barista skills and café experience….

Give us a call to find out more bout what’s on offer over the hill 
Kyle 021432141

To apply for any of these positions please feel free to send your cv and cover letter to

Japanese Cuisine Chef | Sake Bar, Auckland

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We are looking for a talented chef to join our friendly, talented team.

Experience in Japanese cuisine and some Japanese language skills would be desirable as well as confidence in cooking in front of customers. We offer competitive pay and a fun, lively, fast-paced environment.

If you like being busy and are passionate about producing great cuisine please send your cover letter and cv to 

Applicants for this position should have NZ residency or a valid NZ work visa

New head chef for The Grove as Ben Bayly steps aside

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Award-winning Ben Bayly is leaving The Grove, the country’s top fine-dining restaurant, and making way for his mate and successor, Scott Denning.

After more than eight years at The Grove – and more recently sister restaurant Baduzzi – Bayly says he is ready for a change, taking time off to regroup, travel and spend time with family.

With big shoes to fill, his replacement Scott Denning is Auckland born and raised, but like Bayly, cut his teeth at revered Michelin star restaurants in London, including Le Gavroche, The Square and Pied à Terre.

Running his own restaurant Saison in Epsom for three years, Denning’s background also includes time on superyachts in the Caribbean and Mediterranean and in Russia where he helped set up and run various Western and Asian style restaurants in St Petersburg and Moscow.

It is this international influence, exposure to different cultures and experience in top European kitchens that Denning will bring to The Grove when he takes over the kitchen today (Sat 10 Feb).

Started in 2004 by owners Michael and Annette Dearth, The Grove has been home to an impressive roll-call of top New Zealand chefs including Michael Meredith from 2004, Sid Sahrawat from 2006 and Bayly from 2009 – receiving numerous accolades over the years including best fine dining restaurant in the Metro Restaurant of the Year Awards 2017 and three hats in the 2017 Cuisine Good Food Awards.

Michael Dearth, Ben Bayly, Scott Denning

Left to right: Michael Dearth, Ben Bayly, Scott Denning

With similar backgrounds in top London kitchens and friends for some years, Bayly recommended Denning for the role, with Bayly himself put forward for the job by Sahrawat back in 2009.

Of his successor, Bayly believes Denning is up for the job. “He’s a bloody good cook. Personality wise he’s also a good match for Michael which is really important when you get to that level. He’s got some big gonads too and you need that. Plenty of others wouldn’t want the job, the pressure, the expectations.”

After eight and a half years at The Grove, Bayly concedes it’s a very emotional time. “I’m really sad to be leaving, The Grove has helped make me who I am today. But it’s time to step aside and give someone else the opportunity. The Grove has never been better and there’s nothing more for me to add.”

Bayly says one of Dearth’s greatest gifts is recognising talent and providing a platform for it.

“He’s not about controlling you, just about getting the best out of you and giving you the stage on which to shine. The Grove is the making of a chef, no-one really knew who I was when I started, or Michael (Meredith) or Sid. It’s up to Scott now to get on and do the job.”

Posting on social media, Bayly paid tribute to the Dearths – “Mr&MrsD” – and the teams at The Grove and Baduzzi, adding “Time to hand over to the talented @scottdenning32. Got heaps of stuff working in the pipeline and can’t wait to share it with you all in time. But for now my long suffering wife and beautiful kids need some love.”

Dearth describes Bayly as exceptionally talented. “He really has given it his all and treated the business like his own. He’s like a brother to me, we are close and he will always be part of the family.”

On what the future holds, Dearth acknowledges the talented team that have helped make The Grove what it is today. “We’ve always been lucky to have these amazing, talented people around us like Ben, Sid and Michael, but The Grove is also bigger than the individuals involved and has always been a bit of a chameleon, able to adapt to new chefs and opportunities.”

“Meeting Scott through Ben, we were lucky. They share a similar DNA. And with Scott’s background – having done time in Europe but also some interesting places like Russia and Asia – he is super talented and brings great technique, but he’s also a Kiwi, and now we have this unique opportunity to distil all that he’s seen and experienced on his travels on to a plate, so we’re looking forward to that.”

Pumped and ready for the challenge, the man of the hour Denning says he’s excited at what lies ahead. “You couldn’t ask for a better team. To be able to walk in to what Ben and Michael and the team have built, I just want to keep on building on that.”

For more information, visit

Setting up your food business – seminar series by New Zealand School of Food and Wine

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From farmer’s market concepts to the food truck, mobile cafes to private dining clubs, pop-up restaurants, catering and more, the New Zealand School of Food and Wine presents a following series of seminars on “Setting Up Your Food Business”.

New Zealand School of Food and Wine

Module 1: Defining your concept

This module looks at the physical set up of a restaurant, bar, cafe and commercial kitchen in terms of the concept, appliances, customer-flow and location. You will get an overview of food hygiene requirements, Sale of Alcohol certification and other permits that may be required to open.

24 & 25 February 2018. 9am-4pm. $350 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 2: Managing your business

You will learn about practical operational procedures starting with how to cost out food and beverage products that you will to sell through useful spreadsheets, point of sale systems, stocktaking and inventory control and important Employment legislation.

10 & 11 March 2018. 9am-4pm. $275 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 3: Accounting basics

This module looks at accounting concepts and discusses how to identify and understand business costs. You will spend time using Microsoft Excel to create templates and spreadsheets for a host of applications including budgets, ordering, cash flows and profits and loss statements.

24 & 25 March 2018. 9am-4pm. $275 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 4: Building your team

This module is about building an effective team to make your business hum. This module will also cover staff hiring and training with more practical advice on employment relationships with role-plays and problem solving. You will learn about customer service expectations, how to take orders, deal with complaints.

7 & 8 April 2018. 9am-4pm. $275 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 5: Marketing your concept

In this module, you learn the basics of marketing and we outline how to build a mix of platforms to promote your business. This module looks at marketing via social media, understanding google analytics and simple templates for direct mail and building your own website.

21 & 22 April 2018. 9am-4pm. $275 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 6: Business Plan & Mentoring

This module focuses on how to write a business plan that will achieve your goals in a realistic way. It brings together the different strands of the course and helps you to build a strategy of how to execute this process.

5 & 6 May 2018. 9am-4pm. $275 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 7: Coffee & Barista Training

As you build your skills on the espresso machine, you learn how to get the best results from techniques such as dosing and tamping. You will extract perfect shots of espresso, work on milk-steaming skills, important coffee regions and styles of roast.

19 & 20 May 2018. $295 per person.  Click here to enrol.

Module 8: Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ)

To work as a duty manager in a restaurant, cafe or bar selling alcohol you must obtain the Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ). View all dates and the complete process to become a Licensed Duty Manager on the LCQ course page.

Module 9: Food Safety

Auckland Council requires people who work or prepare food in cafes, restaurants, takeaways, farmers markets to be trained in food handling and hygiene. This module covers NZQA Unit Standard 20666 for food safety certification.

View all dates on our Food Safety page.

Module 10: NZSFW Certificate in Wine & WSET Level One Award in Wines

This qualification provides a straightforward introduction to wine. You will learn how to taste and evaluate wines, the main grape varieties, winemaking terms and key wine styles. This certificate covers the basics of food and wine pairing as well. This module covers NZQA Unit Standards 23060 Viticulture and Wine and 22912 Evaluate Wine.

View all dates on our Certificate in Wine page.

Click here to request more information

Partner Organisations

When you join Restaurant Association, mention your study at the NZ School of Food & Wine to get the $25 joining fee waived. See here for more details.

Changes to temporary work visa (Essential Skills) policy & the impact on your business

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If you’re looking to recruit staff from offshore and/or have existing staff within the business holding Essential Skills temporary work visas, please review the below changes that are now in place.

The change concerns the updating of the remuneration thresholds used to determine skill level for temporary work visas (this impacts visa duration and conditions). The remuneration thresholds have been increased in line with their indexation to the NZ income data.


Temporary work visa remuneration thresholds have been adjusted as of 15 Jan 2018. 


The purpose of this is to advise you that government (the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment) has increased the temporary work visa (Essential Skills) remuneration thresholds in-line with indexation to NZ income data.

Temporary work visa (Essential Skills) policy is designed to enable employers to access temporary migrant workers when there are genuine skills and labour shortages.

At the end of August 2017 changes were made to temporary work visas (Essential Skills visa) that resulted in remuneration of the job offered being assessed alongside with the ANZSCO skills framework to under the skill level required for the job and the visa entitlements which a migrant is eligible for.

What has changed?

  • A new temporary work visas (Essential Skills), including renewals,  is assessed against the updated remuneration thresholds (see table below)
  • Conditions or visa duration of the next visa could be different
  • Mid-skilled roles with pay just over the old threshold of $19.97 are those positions likely to be affected
  • For example:
    • a chef paid $20 an hour would have previously been considered mid-skilled, as the occupation is ANZSCO level 2 and the pay was above the 2017 threshold of $19.97 per hour.
    • today if the chef applied for a further work visa they are considered low skilled, unless their pay is increased to above the new 2018 threshold of $20.65 per hour.

How are the skill-band of employment determined for temporary work visas?

  • Employment will be assessed as higher-skilled where the remuneration offered is greater than $36.44 per hour, regardless of the ANZSCO occupation.
  • Employment will be assessed as mid-skilled where:
    • the remuneration offered is between $20.65 per hour and $36.44 per hour (inclusive); and
    • the employment substantially matches the description for a skill level 1, 2 or 3 occupation as set out in the ANZSCO.
  • Employment will be assessed as lower-skilled where:
    • the remuneration offered is less than $20.65 per hour, regardless of the ANZSCO occupation; or
    • the remuneration offered is less than $36.44 per hour and the employment substantially matches the description for a skill level 4 or 5 occupation as set out in the ANZSCO.


Summary of 2018 remuneration thresholds

Remuneration ANZSCO L1-3 ANZSCO L4-5
More than $36.44 per hour High-skilled High-skilled
Between $20.65-$36.44 per hour Mid-skilled Low-skilled
Less than $20.65 per hour Low-skilled Low-skilled

What hasn’t changed?

  • Temporary work visas (Essential Skills) that people already hold will not be affected
  • Changes to the income thresholds will not affect the duration or conditions of visas that have already been granted.


Summary of visa conditions (these haven’t changed)

Skill band Maximum Visa Length Maximum number of Visa Renewals Eligible to support partner/child visa
High-skilled 5 years Unlimited Yes
Mid-skilled 3 years Unlimited No
Low-skilled 1 year Up to three years
(then stand-down period kicks in)

Where can I find more information?

Further information on changes to remuneration thresholds is available here.


Restaurant Association meets with the Minister of Immigration to discuss key issues and concerns

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Restaurant Association’s Chief Executive Marisa Bidois met with the Minister of Immigration Iain Lees-Galloway last week. This was a first step in working closer with Government this year to ensure the concerns of those in the hospitality industry are voiced as the country enters a period of change.

We’ve listened to our members, as well as others in the hospitality industry and compiled a list of key concerns that are currently high priority to our industry.


“Proposed policy settings regarding immigration and employment are a major concern for the future of small businesses in New Zealand.”


In the first of ongoing discussions, the main points of focus were:

Improved recognition from Government for the significant impact that hospitality has on New Zealand’s economy and the integral part that it plays in tourism. The Association is calling on Government to invest in initiatives that are specifically targeted to support the growth and recognition of this industry on a global platform.

Redefining hospitality as a career pathway of choice to New Zealanders. The Association is working hard to inspire and spark a renewed interest in hospitality to younger generations as a viable career choice. We have proposed and opened up the opportunity for Government to collaborate and support us on these initiatives.

Raised concern from hospitality business owners over changes to the 90-day trial period. The ban of 90-day trial periods for any business with more than 19 employees was part of the agreed overhaul of legislative changes to employment laws when the coalition government was put in place.


The below document outlines our key points of focus to address with Government in the coming year of change. Click the below to review the list of concerns, areas of focus, challenges,  and proposed initiatives to raise the profile and status of our industry.

Restaurant Association brochure for Government 2018

Click to download

Sous Chef, Chef de Partie & Pastry Chef | Hinge & Co Restaurant, Clevedon

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Do you love working with local ingredients just outside Auckland?
Do you love working in a brand new kitchen?
Do you love working in passionate and professional team?

Than you should join Hinge & Co in Clevedon.

Located just outside Clevedon Village this restaurant want to make a mark in that area, we are looking for an experienced Sous Chef , Chef de partie and Pastry Chef.

If you think you got what it takes please send you cover letter and CV to

Manager | Sake Bar, Auckland

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Our vibrant and busy traditional Japanese Restaurant is looking for a manager.

If you have restaurant management experience and knowledge of Japanese cuisine and culture we would love to hear from you. Japanese language skills would definitely be an advantage. We can offer you competitive remuneration and great friendly people.

Please send your cv to with a brief cover letter.

Applicants for this position should have NZ residency or a valid NZ work visa