Foo Fighters front man Dave Grohl is due back in Auckland next February for one of the summer's biggest stadium rock shows - and he's got big plans while he's here.
The legendary rocker from Nirvana and Them Crooked Vultures is already looking forward to doing one of his favourite Auckland things - and it's not rock related.
Grohl, it turns out, has had a 17-year love affair with Ponsonby Road eatery Fatima's - something that's set to continue when the band returns in February.
Their relationship dates back to 2000 when the band played the Big Day Out and ate at Fatima's after a day surfing at Piha.
He's mentioned them plenty of times in interviews in the past, but just last week Grohl told Jono and Ben: "I always go to Fatima's to eat there. The funny thing is, we've been saying it for years, so now when we walk in the front door they look at us like, 'Oh f***, it's the Foo Fighters."
The restaurant's owner, Kirsty Senior, says Fatima's staff never get sick of seeing Grohl and Foos coming into the store.
"They came in at one point four days in a row," she told the Herald. "We've had three incidents now where band members or the band's manager have given us tickets and backstage passes to take the staff to concerts.
"He got interviewed getting off the plane once. They asked him what they were doing, and (Grohl) said, 'We're going to go eat Fatima's and go surfing."
Senior said Grohl even mentioned their name during a headlining slot at the Big Day Out, stopping mid-song to rave about their food to the crowd. He said: "Have you guys f***** eaten at Fatima's? We don't have that good shit back home. You should all eat it."
Senior's reply? "We get a little overwhelmed with that because it's nothing we expect and we don't take it for granted."
She said Fatima's - which has a second outlet in Takapuna and has been running for 22 years - tried to keep things low-key when the band showed up.
"I think it's kind of gorgeous. Even that banter, it creates a lot of fun, a lot of chat, and we've been fortunate to experience that because of these guys."
She said Grohl liked to mix up his order, but drummer Taylor Hawkins often asked for a lamb chawarma with just one sauce. They'd even ordered their food from their pop up store at the Big Day Out.
"They like the flavours. The big thing is, this is food you don't get back home, and they've picked up on that," she said.
The eatery, which serves a range of chawarmas and pitas, was used to celebrity attention, with All Blacks, Kiwi actors, visiting stars and members of the Red Hot Chili Peppers dining there.
But Senior said Grohl and the Foos were Fatima's favourite customers.
"Some pretty special people have come in," she said. "But nothing like Dave Grohl and nothing like the Foo Fighters."
The Foo Fighters will perform with Weezer at Auckland's Mt Smart Stadium on Saturday, February 3.