Last month Central Auckland's dirtiest eating establishments were named.

Food grades in the former Auckland City region show 10 restaurants and cafes have received E grades, with 29 given a D grade.

The New Zealand Herald online asked readers if they were influenced by the food grading system. Nearly 13,500 readers responded and just over half said they used the rating to make a call about whether to dine there. Or not.

But to the every day diner, how do these places really stack up?


A few brave members of the online team have decided to put their bellies on the line and review all 29 of the D listers, revealing one a day for the month of September. D grade eateries are reviewed twice a year, according to Auckland City Council. While they are subject to change, our list is correct as of the last week of August, 2013. If the grade is changed at the time of publication this will be made clear in the review.

So join us on our journey eating through the D list. Check in at lunch each day, read our review, and let us know in the poll if you have - or would - eat at the outlet.

(Check out our week 2 wrap here and our week 1 wrap here.)

Zyka Indian Cuisine, 547 Hillsborough Rd, Lynnfield
We ordered: A lamb bhuna ($18), the dhal makhani ($14) and a garlic naan to share ($4). The lamb was falling apart and the garam masal sauce was delicious. The dhal tasted a little strongly of cloves, but made a delicious mouthful when wrapped in the soft naan.

The vibe was: Happy. There were plenty of patrons this lunch time and everyone seemed to be enjoying the Bollywood film clips playing on a small screen.

The décor looked: Fine. The tables were clean, although when we arrived a small critter crossed our table. Having said that, it wasn't enough to put us off our Indian feast.

The service was: Perfectly polite and attentive.

We left feeling: So satisfied with our choices that we took a D-grade doggy bag home.

We could see their D grade: Peeking out just behind a bunch of menus at the counter.

The most D-grade thing about it: Probably the small table bug, but there was nothing else to note.