Meet Browne Street, Avondale’s impressive new venue and all-day eatery

There is nothing pretentious about new Avondale eatery Browne Street, yet it’s the sort of place that can’t help but garner attention. The newly opened industrial-esque eatery is located in a two-level building that was originally the Avondale Transport Depot and the moniker comes from Rosebank Road’s former name, which can be found in any history book dating prior to 1930.

Having been refurbished to feature polished concrete floors, modernist cinder blocks, brown leather booth seating and black aluminium and laminate garage doors, Browne Street’s slick aesthetic subtly stands out in otherwise unchanged part of the neighbourhood. The team behind the operation also own Blockhouse Bay institution, The Block Cafe. Talking to co-owner Sam Fraser, it’s clear these visionaries have drawn upon a wealth of experience in the lead up to opening their second venture.

“It has taken two years,” Fraser says, and as a result, they have struck just the right note to embody the new breed of the all-day eatery; neither too casual nor too sophisticated. “Part of the brief was to have a loosely separated outdoor area and further in, a more intimate dining space,” Fraser says. And the layout is perfect. The street-facing garage doors are opened right up to create seamless indoor-outdoor flow with benches and leaners that serve as the perfect spot for a few casual after work beers. Tucked away inside is a section of more private dining tables and upstairs, an expansive space is available for private functions for between 30-100 people.

Their target catchment is that of Waterview, Mount Albert and Avondale Heights, but no doubt, it will be much bigger. With a menu that carefully spans the day-long spectrum, Atomic coffee on the go, and a rotating line-up of local beers (currently Sawmill, Piha, Chaotic Hop and Black Sands) there’s good reason to visit Browne Street any time of the day. We’re quite sure patrons will gravitate towards the ham hock on toast with parmesan crusted poached eggs for brunch and the beef cheek udon which is a rich, egg-topped noodle dish for lunch. Mind you, there were plenty of other orders that took our fancy, including the merguez sausage baguette with horseradish cream and caramelised onions.

With every detail well thought out and a clear consideration for making people feel comfortable, Browne Street is already on its way to becoming an Avondale institution. Fraser closes our conversation by saying, “Our model is built to last… I’m not one for trends and fads.” As I look around, I feel this statement fits perfectly with what they have achieved; a welcoming and dependable new address out West.

Opening hours:
Sunday to Tuesday: 7am – 5pm
Wednesday to Saturday: 7am till late

Browne Street

50 Rosebank Road

(09) 820 8400


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Why Lewis Road Creamery’s newest milk is the crème de la crème

We have come to know and love Lewis Road Creamery as a brand committed to bringing us superior dairy products. But what do you do when you need to up that benchmark and establish a whole new expectation for what one’s daily milk should offer? You create the gold standard in milk, of course — the crème de la crème — aka Lewis Road Creamery Gold Top Milk.

Available in supermarkets today, the new Gold Top™ milk is non-homogenised, organic Jersey milk that only contains A2 ß-casein protein and is sourced from Jersey Girl Organics in Matamata. Jersey Girl Organics has a rich history in organic dairy farming and in producing top-shelf milk under its own brand. The partnership means Lewis Road will now be supplying Jersey Girl Organics nationwide.

Being non-homogenised means this gorgeous new milk comes with a layer of natural cream. Adding to the nostalgia is the fact Lewis Road is releasing some of its Gold Top™ Milk in glass bottles. Limited capacity for glass at the bottler means only a small run of 300 bottles per week is able to be produced. Like the rest of Lewis Road’s milks, the Gold Top variety will otherwise be packaged in a rPET bottle made from 100 percent recycled plastic. So go forth and enjoy your best dairy experience yet, we say.

Gold Top™ Milk glass bottles will be available exclusively from Farro supermarkets in Auckland and the rPET bottles available more widely.


Faradays opens its flagship bar, a sumptuous oasis of delicious bites and delectable pours

This inner-city eatery has been given a new look and a new lease on life by hospitality maestro David Lee

Back in the city? Keep that holiday feeling going with Auckland’s best outdoor dining restaurants

Don’t deliberate — these are the best dishes from Soul’s excellent new spring menu

Sure, they’ve got one of the best terraces in town. Sure, they know how to put on a damn fine Sunday session. Sure, you can go there at any time on any given day knowing that the atmosphere will be buzzing. But the one thing we can never, ever go past at Soul Bar & Bistro is the unfailingly delicious food. Given that Executive Chef Gavin Doyle has crafted some sensational new dishes for spring, we felt it a good time to let you in on how to best order from the menu. Behold, our top three picks.

1. The Hawke’s Bay lamb rack with pepitas, salt baked kumara, cultured cream & za’atar
Doyle himself has admitted that this is his favourite main on the menu right now. The world famous cut of meat is cooked sous vide and served medium. It’s a succulent piece of juicy, tasty heaven, accompanied by red kumara which is salt-baked then re-fried per order. “The salt bake keeps the moisture in the spud, so when its re-fried it’s moist, crispy, salty and naturally sweet,” says Doyle. It is then dressed in house pickled jalapeños, garlic shoots, garlic chips, pepitas and seasoned with za’atar spice for a serious flavour kick. But wait, there’s more. The base of the plate is dressed with cultured cream (similar to crème faîche) which adds a creamy, richness to this incredible dish.

2. Green Goddess salad (ft. peas, edamame, broccolini, avocado, crispy quinoa furikake)
This has quietly been a long-time favourite dish of the Denizen team, and it certainly remains that way as we endeavour to make healthier choices in the lead-up to summer. The salubrious medley of peas, edamame, broccolini, avocado, cashews, coriander, crispy quinoa furikake is pulled together by a big smear of ‘Goddess dressing’ made from coriander, parsley, lime, cashew nuts, extra virgin olive oil and green Tabasco. Seasonings of lemon and maple vinaigrette add a touch of tang and sweetness to the generous dish, which will likely boggle the eater at how something can be so delicious and yet remain so healthy.

3. Sichuan butternut with lemon crème fraîche
Another hot pick of Doyle’s is this simple and super tasty side dish. Butternut pumpkin is pre-cooked in the steamer then refried per order, after which it is seasoned well with salt and dressed in a house made Sichuan sauce (made from chilli paste, yellow bean paste, garlic, ginger and yellow rock sugar). “The spicy sauce pairs so well with pumpkin because of its natural sweetness,” says Doyle. “It’s then cooled by the lemon crème fraîche… Salty, sweet, heat and creaminess — it’s a winning combination.”

To book a table at Soul Bar & Bistro, click here

Soul Bar & Bistro

16-18/Lower Hobson Street and Customs St W
Viaduct Harbour

(09) 356 7249


Faradays opens its flagship bar, a sumptuous oasis of delicious bites and delectable pours

This inner-city eatery has been given a new look and a new lease on life by hospitality maestro David Lee

Back in the city? Keep that holiday feeling going with Auckland’s best outdoor dining restaurants

Church Road releases a game-changing Provence-style Rosé for spring

The recent obsession with Rosé has seen our palates refined. The resolution is firm: we like our Rosés to be Provence-style, which means, lighter and drier in taste. Thankfully, leading Hawke’s Bay winery Church Road has created a new drop that fits the bill perfectly, the Church Road Gwen Rosé 2018, which also serves as a homage to the love of its pioneering winemaker and his wife, Florence ‘Gwen’ Brown.

The woman, who is literally the face of the new wine, married Tom McDonald in 1931, the same time the Church Road winery was beginning to grow under Tom’s management. The two were married for 50 years. Church Road Winemaker Chris Scott says, “We have been honouring the legacy of our pioneering winemaker Tom McDonald across a number of our ranges, as well as in our winemaking philosophy, but we know he couldn’t have done what he did without the support of his wife, Gwen. We wanted to pay tribute to her role in the Church Road history.”

Crafted from Merlot and Tempranillo grapes grown in Hawke’s Bay, the wine shares the finely textured, dry and pale characteristics of the sophisticated Rosés from Provence. It’s light and crisp on the palate — the perfect wine to enjoy in the heat of summertime. If you’ve been looking for a new go-to Rosé for the season ahead, consider your search over.

To celebrate the launch of the Church Road Gwen Rosé, we are giving away a lunch for 10 people at Euro with a specially curated menu. To enter, click here.

The Church Road Gwen Rosé 2018 is available from any leading wine retailer.

This competition has now closed.


Faradays opens its flagship bar, a sumptuous oasis of delicious bites and delectable pours

This inner-city eatery has been given a new look and a new lease on life by hospitality maestro David Lee

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Heralding a new era: Sid at The French Café launches its highly-anticipated menu

“These dried flowers,” Chand Sahrawat points to a vase as we walk into the main dining area at The French Café (now officially Sid at The French Café) “are by Mark Antonia, and are in line with the idea of sustainability we are trying to promote.” It’s my first indication of the approach being taken by this renowned hospitality duo (Chand and her husband Sid Sahrawat) to their latest venture. Taking the reigns at one of Auckland’s most iconic dining institutions, formerly owned by Simon Wright and Creghan Molloy-Wright, the new owners are putting their own, distinct stamp on the famed restaurant while simultaneously paying homage to its previous life. Going on to point out the large artwork by Emma Hayes that has always taken up the back wall in the front dining space, Chand explains that they actually installed a number of other pieces by the same artist, not only as a nod to the restaurant’s legacy but also because “they just suit the space.” And she’s right.


While the interior isn’t so different, there are subtle, poignant changes. The tables are set up differently, each boasting a new candle centrepiece. Dried flowers sit in vases instead of fresh ones, a foreshadowing of the sustainable culinary practices I would later see on the menu itself. “I eventually want to turn the front bar into a kind of living room space,” Chand explains, divulging the attitude her and Sid share that anyone visiting the restaurant should feel like they’re coming into a home. “Fine dining can be intimidating and scary,” she says, “but we don’t want it to feel too stiff-upper-lip. We want people to have fun, to be able to share a laugh and feel relaxed.”

Scampi with leek, lovage and spruce

It’s an outlook that feels totally appropriate alongside the new menu. A playful, innovative approach to traditional fine-dining flavours, the creative twist we’ve come to expect from Sid Sahrawat injects each dish with an element of the unexpected. In many ways, it picks up where Sidart left off after switching tact to focus on progressive Indian cuisine earlier this year. “We know we’ve got really big shoes to fill,” admits Sid, speaking about the task of such a highly-anticipated takeover “but we’re looking forward to that challenge.” And from what I saw, success seems to be all about balance.

While the menu features a number of intriguing, new dishes like pomme soufflé with smoked yoghurt, onion and kale and an aged fillet of beef with charred parsnip, goat’s curd and cavolo nero, it also offers a nod to its origins with dishes like the confit duck (a longstanding favourite from the previous menu) cooked in the same way but served with a mix of different flavours and garnishes from Sid’s repertoire. Chand explains that they wanted Sid at The French Café to still feel fresh without having to reinvent the wheel. Subsequently, it has come to embody a harmonious balance between the elements that diners have always loved about The French Café (including the waitstaff) and the modern perspective being brought to the table by its new owners and Executive Chef, Lesley Chandra (a long-time colleague of Sid).

Left: Apple with verjus, celery and cardamom

Speaking to Chand while watching Sid assemble new menu dishes it became clear to me that for these two, the most significant changes stem from the finest details. Everything is highly considered, from the bespoke, handmade ceramic serving plates (made by Peter Collis and Rachel Carter) to the emphasis placed on using New Zealand sourced ingredients (as much as possible), even down to the oil, salt and pepper. This attention to detail is inherent to the menu, where a mixture of sustainable practices, painstaking techniques and expertly balanced flavours combine to promise an entirely unique culinary experience.

Other menu highlights included the hapuka with caramelised whey, dill and sorrel, a delicate scampi with leek, lovage and spruce and a dessert of sourdough ice cream with beer praline and raspberry. Sid outlined that his method of making the ice cream was from discarded scraps of sourdough loaf. To which we inevitably shook our heads in fascinated appreciation and immediately went in for a second spoonful.

Right: Sourdough ice cream with beer praline and raspberry

The entire ethos behind Sid at The French Café is one that embodies the essence of hospitality. Accepting of all who cross their Symonds Street threshold — they happily cater to any and all dietary requirements — Sid and Chand Sahrawat are cultivating an atmosphere where fine-dining feels friendly, and the emphasis is on simply enjoying all that the food has to offer. You won’t find any unnecessary tropes around degustation dining here, only a hope that people will feel comfortable, surprised, delighted and fulfilled, and will leave with an experience to remember. And considering the pair’s focus on only offering food that is sustainably sourced and in season, chances are that no two visits will ever feel the same.

The new menu at Sid at The French Café is available now. For the full menu and to book a table, click hereBookings are also available for private functions in the private cellar and The French Kitchen. All pricing and menu options — degustation, vegetarian and a la carte — remain the same. 

Opening hours:
Tuesday – Saturday, dinner
Friday, lunch

Sid at The French Café

210 Symonds Street

09 377 1911


Faradays opens its flagship bar, a sumptuous oasis of delicious bites and delectable pours

This inner-city eatery has been given a new look and a new lease on life by hospitality maestro David Lee

Back in the city? Keep that holiday feeling going with Auckland’s best outdoor dining restaurants

The longue and the short of it: 4 chaise longues your home needs

Channelling the Romans who once ate and entertained whilst lying down on furniture of a similar ilk, the chaise longue is a versatile item that any considered interior deserves. Employed in sunny nooks and living spaces where they can be used to accommodate more than one person when seated upright, the luxurious furnishing never fails to add a touch of je ne sais quoi.

Left to right:
Happy chaise by Antonio Citterio for Flexform from Studio Italia
Emilee ottoman by David Shaw from David Shaw
YOMA bed by Kaschkasch for Zeitraum from ECC
Atoll daybed by Antonio Citterio for B&B Italia from Matisse


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The weekend report: 5 things you might have missed

Another weekend another rugby match. And I’m sorry, but even if you’re not a fan of our national sport, you have to appreciate the course of events that unfolded in Wellington on Saturday night. The Boks, bringing their relentless physicality, overcame the boys in black to achieve a devastatingly close victory, 36-34. Fair to say, the rugby world was roused with many commentators stating that they’d hate to be the next team facing the ABs (aka South Africa, next weekend, in Pretoria).

Meanwhile, over at London Fashion Week, the Beckhams reasserted why they are the epitome of ‘family goals’, with Romeo Beckham posting a very cute photo on Instagram in support of his mother’s 10th-anniversary show. We swooned, we cooed, and we snapped our fingers for the Spice Girl-turned-designer who makes having a huge family and running a clothing empire look like a walk in the park.


View this post on Instagram


Amazing show mum love you so much @victoriabeckham ❤️

A post shared by ROMEO (@romeobeckham) on

In other important news, it came to our attention that there is some ALARMINGLY good Garlic Bread coming out of Queen’s Rise restaurant Lowbrow. Not that we’re experts on Instagram analytics or anything but we noticed that the posting of this mere little creation garnered tenfold the likes of the eatery’s average post, meaning that people are excited. We’ll leave you to devour the caption alone, which reads: “We’ve been working on perfecting this little guy for a while now, and what a journey it’s been. Soft pillows of love with a slightly salty crisp exterior, all hiding the slow cooked garlic and parsley butter sneakily injected into each roll, this is a butter lover’s dream.” So, you know, Code Red people.

It also became apparent over the weekend that future space tourists will be able to toast to their intergalactic pursuits with a high-tech bottle of Mumm Champagne. The marque’s official CEO (Chief Entertainment Officer) Usain Bolt launched the first zero-gravity bottle in nothing other than a zero gravity chamber. You can watch the antics here.

Usain Bolt relaxing with GH Mumm’s zero-gravity Champagne bottle

Last, but certainly not least, it’s been a long weekend for some who have felt the full force of Mother Nature. Hurricane Florence made landfall causing severe flooding in North and South Carolina where the death toll is well into the double digits. You can watch a jaw-dropping video showing the damage here. Things aren’t good in China and the Philippines either where Typhoon Mangkhut has caused half a million people to flee, leaving 64 dead.

An aeriel view of Hurricane Florence


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Denizen in the Kitchen with F&P: A Mexican fiesta

Over the last few months, our Denizen in the Kitchen series has seen us serve up an array of mouthwatering meals from tangy lime and pumpkin soup to Chicken Marbella, right here in our offices. Last Friday afternoon, the feasting continued with Denizen’s Senior Graphic Designer, Fran, taking to our Fisher & Paykel-appointed kitchen to create what could only be described as a bona fide fiesta.

Deciding to serve up a spread of Mexican-style dishes including assemble-your-own chicken fajitas, vegetarian quesadillas and corn chips with salsa and guacamole, Fran lined up a smorgasbord of delicious add-ins so that each of us could create something to our specific tastes. Using the Fisher & Paykel induction stovetop to make the chicken fajitas and serving all the components separately alongside helpings of salad, cheese, beans, garnishes and sauces, Fran’s final touch really made the whole thing feel like a party — providing a colourful line up of sombreros that we all had to put on before tucking in.

The beauty of this kind of lunch is the way that it can be customised via a variety of ingredients and fillings, perfect for a large group with a number of different preferences. Here we outline how we decided to do it, but our advice to those wanting to put on their own Mexican fiesta at home? Get creative.

2 packets of soft tortilla wraps
3 capsicums (red, yellow, green)
1 brown onion
Homemade salsa (tomato and red onion)
2 carrots
1 iceberg lettuce
8 chicken breasts (depending on how big the group is)
Spices (to taste) can include: cumin, smoked paprika, chilli, black pepper, garlic, onion

Vegetarian quesadillas:
Soft wraps
Grated cheese
Spring onions

Sauces and condiments:
Sweet chilli sauce
Salsa dip
Sour cream
3 limes
Black beans
Mexican salsa beans
Grated cheese
Corn chips
Homemade guacamole (avocados, lemon juice, salt & pepper and sour cream)
Fresh coriander

To prepare the fajitas, first, slice the capsicums and the brown onion and fry together in a pan with a bit of oil and salt and pepper. Next, prepare the salsa by dicing the tomatoes and red onions into small cubes and combining. Slice the carrots very finely and set aside on a plate with the iceberg lettuce. With the chicken, prepare by cutting the breasts into small pieces and placing into a pan with oil, salt and pepper. Add in some seasonings of choice for flavour. We used a mix of cumin, smoked paprika, chilli, black pepper, garlic and onion. Keep on a high heat until chicken is cooked through, stirring continually. Once the chicken is done, set aside in its own bowl.

Next, prepare the vegetarian quesadillas by putting a pan on medium heat and laying down a wrap on the base. Sprinkle with grated cheese and thinly sliced spring onion, and finish by placing another wrap on top. Cook each side until the outside is browned and all the cheese is melted. Once finished, cut into triangles to serve.

Before gathering everyone around to start eating, ensure all extra sauces and condiments are laid out on their own separate plates. Stack the tortilla wraps up and fill a number of smaller bowls with sweet chilli sauce, salsa, sour cream, grated cheese, black and Mexican beans, and homemade guacamole. Fill a bigger bowl with corn chips.

Optional extra: provide everyone partaking in the meal with a sombrero each to really ramp up the vibe. 


Faradays opens its flagship bar, a sumptuous oasis of delicious bites and delectable pours

This inner-city eatery has been given a new look and a new lease on life by hospitality maestro David Lee

Back in the city? Keep that holiday feeling going with Auckland’s best outdoor dining restaurants

This pop-up dining experience is delivering a new school taste of France

While we’re proud of our fish and chips and meat and cheese pies, we’ll admit that nobody does top-notch cuisine quite like the French. Unfortunately, finding a bit of high-quality gallic fare in Auckland can be a little hit and miss which is just one of the many reasons why we’re delighted that French inspired pop-up La Pêche is hitting the city in just over a week’s time.

For those who haven’t heard, La Pêche is a pop-up which turns unassuming spaces into bustling nighttime bistros, serving up an array of tasty fare to their trove of followers. The duo behind the concept, ‘French Fried’ aka Emma Ogilvie (a marketer with a family restaurant background) and Nick Landsman (a Chef de partie at Depot), first launched the concept in Paris, where they met and discovered a shared passion for food. Fresh off the back of their Lovebucket pop-up, a dining affair which was nothing short of a resounding success, they are setting up for yet another takeover at Dear Jervois.

Roping in a network of friends and family with experience in the industry — “Jack the awesome manager from Dear Jervois [will be] working the floor with his customary charm, Tristan who did wines at The Golden Dawn will be our sommelier, our cousin Milika, the manager at Coco’s, will also be helping out and Alex Southwick, a really talented young chef, is working under Nick in the kitchen” — guests can expect a little bit of the magic of Paris’ neo-bistro dining culture. Committed to using the best local and seasonal ingredients, and preparing them simply, we’re told the menu “feels very French but there are some British and Pacific influences coming through too. Expect everything from a fancy filet o fish, to grilled octopus, lambs tongue and slow cooked venison shank on the à la carte menu.”

The name, if you were wondering, is a French way of asking ‘How are you going? On form?’ Ogilvie goes on to explain, “It’s positive, it’s caring and we also love that it has the double sense of meaning peach which seems to carry those same warm connotations.” Expressing a desire to attract an array of different diners with an assurance that everyone is welcome, it’s no wonder this democratic dining experience is already shaking Auckland up.

Taking place at Dear Jervois from 20th-22nd and 27th-29th September, you can book a spot by visiting La Peche’s Facebook page here.


Faradays opens its flagship bar, a sumptuous oasis of delicious bites and delectable pours

This inner-city eatery has been given a new look and a new lease on life by hospitality maestro David Lee

Back in the city? Keep that holiday feeling going with Auckland’s best outdoor dining restaurants

Prada’s iconic Linea Rossa collection is back — and it has just landed in Auckland

The cyclical nature of fashion dictates that a degree of nostalgia will always exist in the industry. And at the moment, it feels like we’re really in the midst of a happy retreat to the 90s. Bucket hats, grungy minimalism and neon are being seen more and more on front rows and in collections of some of fashion’s most renowned brands — and Prada is no exception.

You might remember the Italian label’s iconic Linea Rossa collection from 1997. Designed to elevate the functional, it was a simple line that came to stand for a new breed of modern luxury (and was arguably the first indication of what would become the current ‘athleisure’ phenomenon). Since it’s 90s heyday, Linea Rossa has been held up as a fundamental part of Prada’s aesthetic history and a bona fide favourite among collectors. So when the brand announced that Linea Rossa would return to the FW18 runway, it was met with a warm welcome.

The new iteration retains its retro-minimalist feel and simple silhouettes but feels modern and entirely appropriate for the way we’re dressing now. Showcasing a focus on technical detailing and cutting-edge production techniques, the pieces proffer impossible-to-ignore neons as the tones of the moment, with quilted pants, padded jackets, anoraks and bucket hats all rendered in bold, block colours. It’s a meeting of form and function, where each piece is practical against the elements as well as being undeniably sleek. And while it isn’t just a re-hashing of the original, the new Linea Rossa still pays homage to its origins with the collection’s hallmark — a single, red stripe — still taking pride of place.

Favoured by a number of rappers including Kanye West and A$AP Rocky and recently drawing the likes of Sara Sampaio, Ansel Elgort, Khalid and Adriana Lima (among others) to its official launch in New York, Prada’s Linea Rossa has, incredibly, made its way to Auckland, launching today in the Queen Street boutique. Considering that only a few Prada stores around the world were selected to carry the line (none in Australia, by the way) it’s a bit of a coup that we’re able to have such an iconic collection right on our doorsteps.

So go forth and embrace the 90s nostalgia. This is high-vis haute fashion at its best.


45 Queen Street

09 366 7121


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