A Māori cafe on Auckland's waterfront is hosting a hākari aroha - feast of love - tomorrow to commemorate the Christchurch mosque attacks and raise funds to support the community's rebuild.
The Māori Kitchen on Queens Wharf in the Auckland CBD just opened this month, and serves traditional Māori kai with a contemporary flare.
It has proven extremely popular with massive queues, and even been named as one of TimeOut London's 18 "coolest food openings" of 2019.
Chef Rewi Spraggon said after Friday's mosque attacks in Christchurch he and his staff decided they wanted to do something.
"I cried all the way home after work, I just felt sick and wanted to do something positive.
"Hākari aroha, or feast of love, is usually at time of tangihanga, to remember life, and in this case to commemorate many people. Food and breaking bread, coming together, is a way of healing."
Spraggon said they hoped to see as many Muslim whānau come along and would have halal options available.
They were preparing to serve 600 plates for the session at $15 each, between midday and 2pm.
All of the funds raised would be gifted to the Christchurch Muslim community, Spraggon said. There would also be collection buckets on site. Spraggon said their produce company was providing the supplies koha and they even had halal chicken donated.
The session would start with a karakia by kaumatua Bob Newson - who has translated the Koran into te reo - at 12.15pm to commemorate the victims and strengthen Aucklanders.
"It may be a little thing, but we are a little kitchen, with a big heart," Spraggon said.