Brunch: Good Day, Orakei

By Greg Bruce

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Address: 3/78 Coates Ave, Orakei
Phone: 09-529 5048
Open: Open Mon-Fri 7am-3.30pm; weekends 8am-3pm
Cost: $49 for two

Good Day in Orakei. Photo / Doug Sherring
Good Day in Orakei. Photo / Doug Sherring


One-third of The Real Housewives of Auckland live a couple of streets away; the cafe is run by the brilliant Jacqui Crichton and Dan Shaw, who spent 10 years at Dizengoff; it's in a classic Kiwi block of shops on a classic residential street; there are carparks everywhere; the interior has a welcoming openness about it. These are some of the many reasons attracting you to the tiny but lovely Good Day.


It's a clever menu, quite short and intriguing, with some groovy modern options like smashed peas on toast served with parmesan, fresh mint, lemon juice and watercress ($11).

Multiple dishes make use of the butcher next door, who is name-checked in the menu as "Chris the Butcher".

There's something uplifting about the idea of eating porridge at a cafe but often something disappointing about the reality, so alongside mine (served with flaxseed, apple and cinnamon, $12.50), I ordered a bacon buttie ($9), to be shared with the table.

My wife ordered a dish that was described on the menu as follows: "Slow-cooked butter beans in a smokey spicy tomato sauce, topped with cheddar cheese and worcester sauce." ($14) It was a great description but on further thought I said, "You know that's just baked beans on toast, eh?"

"Yes," she said. "I like baked beans on toast."

The porridge was smooth and nutty, slightly sweet, served with one small white pot of almond milk and another of cream, while Chris the Butcher's bacon was the star of the brilliantly minimalist buttie, otherwise comprised only of a long, soft white roll, ample butter and a stripe of HP Sauce. The buttie ended up not really being shared with the table.

Homemade baked beans on buttered sourdough. Photo / Doug Sherring
Homemade baked beans on buttered sourdough. Photo / Doug Sherring

The baked beans were surprisingly spicy, with a whiff of smoke and a savoury warmth ideally suited to ridiculously cold mornings.

Great coffee. Really tremendous coffee.


The good thing about a place this small, where staff have no choice but to walk past your table every minute or so, is that it's really easy to get service when you need it. And when they need to ask questions of the kitchen, it's just a couple of steps away.

- Canvas

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