After a successful 15-year-long relationship, Kiwi chef and restaurateur Peter Gordon is set to serve up his last plate at SkyCity this August.
The chef and author is departing the iconic Auckland institutions, The Sugar Club and Bellota, and freeing up his time to focus on a new venture - supporting the local food sector.
Taking to Instagram, the author shared how Covid has impacted his career and what big moves are on the horizon for the SkyCity dining scene pioneer.
"I'm writing to let you know that after 15 terrific and creative years at SkyCity, firstly at dine by Peter Gordon, then Bellota and currently The Sugar Club, I will soon be saying farewell.
"Like many of us in these troubling Covid-19 times, I've looked at my life and career, and at what I'd like the present and future to be. Now that I'm living back in New Zealand permanently I've decided I need to do things differently.
"My partner Al and I have created a new business 'Homeland'. We will aim to teach people to cook, to buy local, to share stories and recipes from their homelands, and to help producers sell product in markets maybe they haven't been able to tap into. It'll be a cooking school and food embassy, connecting communities with each other, helping to sell great kai (food) to the world," the post continued.
"Ten weeks ago this wasn't even an idea in our heads, but our time together during lockdown made us both want to create something good and meaningful for Aotearoa New Zealand and our Pacific neighbours. We want to be part of a solution to a global issue affecting our country."
Gordon then went on the thank his SkyCity "family" and express his gratitude.
"So many SkyCity whānau (family) from the executive team to the kitchen porters have supported my professional and personal life and I'll always be grateful to them. I've enjoyed being part of the NZ food story, training numerous chefs and front of house staff, serving countless glasses of wine and meeting thousands of fantastic customers. I'm sure I'll see you somewhere, but until then, thank you for being part of my food journey here in my homeland."
Gordon also shared photos from June 2013, including The Sugar Club under construction, and the vases displayed in the restaurant when he first saw them at Massimo Micheluzzi's shop in Venice.
Gordon played a huge part in SkyCity's culinary journey, with his restaurant dine by Peter Gordon, which opened at SkyCity in 2004.
Spanish Tapas restaurant Bellota, which shows as "temporarily closed" online, then opened in 2006 and The Sugar Club was then born in 2013.
A post on the Sugar Club Instagram pays tribute to the chef and his time with the iconic Auckland hot spot.
"It's with a heavy heart we announce @chefpetergordon is calling 'last orders' as Signature Chef for The Sugar Club. Peter is freeing up his time to focus on his new venture, Homeland - a cooking school and food embassy that will connect communities together and support the local food sector.
"We're so proud of him and will miss having him as part of our whānau. We will continue to operate as usual and Peter will be serving his last dish with us in August."
The Sugar Club is said to be continuing to operate as usual and no current announcements have been made about who might be filling Gordon's shoes.