Auckland's top 50 restaurants named in new list

The Grill by Sean Connolly is amongst the top 50 eateries named in the Metro/Audi Restaurant of the Year awards.
Photo / Supplied
The Grill by Sean Connolly is amongst the top 50 eateries named in the Metro/Audi Restaurant of the Year awards. Photo / Supplied

New dining precincts Federal Street and Britomart have made their mark on the foodie scene, featuring heavily in a newly named list of Auckland's top 50 eateries.

The annual Metro/Audi Restaurant of the Year top 50 list has been released and Metro editor and award judge, Simon Wilson said the emerging hot-spots have "upped the ante for the restaurant scene in Auckland."

"They've created a geographic and atmospheric shift in dining," he said.

"More established precincts such as Ponsonby and Parnell are having to work hard to compete."

Meanwhile, the Wynyard Quarter's North Wharf, buzzing during the Rugby World Cup, failed to get a mention at all.

"They have many good places down there to eat and drink and enjoy the atmosphere, but the mix doesn't include any really high-quality flagship restaurants, either formal or informal, and that's disappointing," Wilson said.

A dozen of the top 50 make their debut on the list, about half are new restaurants to Auckland, and a bunch of high-profile Auckland venues failed to make the cut like SPQR, Sails, Grand Harbour, One Tree Grill and Satya.

"In most cases, what makes a restaurant fall off the list is the fact it's continuing to do what it has always done while the standard of other places has risen around them," Wilson said.

"It's especially notable that, while there are half a dozen Japanese restaurants in the top 50 including the exceptionally good Cocoro in Ponsonby, we haven't found room for a single Chinese restaurant. That's probably the biggest single gap in good Auckland eating right now."

Judges will name a best in category in five sections - fine dining, smart dining, upmarket bistro, casual bistro and Asian.

Other award categories include progressive restaurateur of the year, best chef, best service, best dish, best rural restaurant, best short and long drinks lists, best new restaurant and a supreme winner.

Wilson promises "quite a few surprises" when the winners are announced at a special event at St Matthew's in the City on April 23.

The Metro/Audi Restaurant of the Year Top 50 (in alphabetical order):

Antoine's
Basque Kitchen and Bar
Botswana Butchery
Cable Bay Restaurant & Wine Bar
Café Hanoi
Casita Miro
Cibo
Clooney
Cocoro
Coco's Cantina
Cru at Sale St
Delicious
Depot
Dine by Peter Gordon
District Dining
Ebisu
Eight.Two
Ella
Euro
Harbourside
Ima
Kura
Merediths
Molten
Moochowchow
Morita
Non Solo Pizza
Number Five
O'Connell Street Bistro
O'Sarracino
Poderi Crisci
Ponsonby Road Bistro
Prego
Pure
Roxy
Sake Bar 601
Sidart
Soul Bar & Bistro
Sunday Painters
Te Whau
The Engine Room
The French Café
The Grill by Sean Connolly
The Grove
The Shed at Te Motu
The Tasting Shed
Toto
TriBeCa
Two Fifteen
Vinnies

- HERALD ONLINE

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