From left: Euro's interior by Paula Sigley and CTRL Space; Bang bang squid with puffed rice and cashew
Skull Island king prawns with 'nduja butter and lime salt
From left: Smoked jumbo turkey leg with white barbecue sauce; Bang bang squid with puffed rice and cashew; Mānuka smoked beetroot with radicchio

One of Auckland’s most iconic longstanding waterfront eateries undergoes a bold and enticing reinvention

I’m not sure if I should admit this openly, but when the iconic waterfront eatery Euro first opened its doors 21 years ago, I was there. At the time, just prior to the 30th America’s Cup, the new restaurant was widely celebrated as our first foray into becoming a sophisticated, cosmopolitan city by the sea.

Euro was the place to be. It became the gathering place for the city’s movers and shakers; the cultural and business elite all congregated here to share war stories, conquests and failures over languishing long lunches that rolled into dinners. 

Twenty-odd years on, and our city’s hospitality scene has evolved into an entirely different beast. What we eat and the way we eat has completely changed. We can safely say that we have grown into our global status as a cosmopolitan city, and with that comes a more comfortable and relaxed way of enjoying life.

Richard Sigley, of Nourish Group, has been involved in the Euro since its inception and is very familiar with the changing evolution of our city. This experience has lead him to conceive, alongside his wife Paula and Executive Chef Gareth Stewart, a bold and bright new incarnation of Euro that is guaranteed to see it continue its longstanding reign as the waterfront destination of the summer and beyond.

“Euro was my firstborn, so to speak — my first foray onto the dining scene, so it will always hold a special place in my heart,” says Sigley.  “When it opened, it blew everyone away. It was a truly international restaurant that has been consistently good for two decades, but the time is now right for reinvention.”

“Our evolved vision for Euro is for a place where the traditional boundaries between kitchen and dining room are relaxed, where meals become a series of vividly flavored shared dishes rather than rigid three courses, and where the menu responds to its customers’ needs, rather than being prescriptive.” 

Last night, to celebrate my husband’s birthday, I had the pleasure of experiencing Euro 2.0 with my family. Upon arrival it’s abundantly clear that this is an exciting new era for the iconic eatery. The interior, a collaboration between Paula and CTRL Space, is light and bright, with sleek modernist accents such as floors lined with pale pink travertine tiles. The outdoor space emits a club-by-the-sea aesthetic, with high and low tables and comfortable wrap around sofas where one can take in the view of (or spy upon) Prada’s America’s Cup base. 

Local oysters on ice with finger lime and green hot sauce

Inside, something that’s impressive — and a rarity in many of today’s new eateries — are the extremely comfortable seats; perhaps a nod to the old days where one would linger all day and into the evening. 

Euro 2.0 has added a youthful energy that’s apparent everywhere, from friendly and  passionate staff, to a soundtrack of great upbeat music that had our toes tapping under the table. Add to this the seasonally changing collaborations with local artists, that promise to keep things continually fresh and evolving; by integrating both their artworks and taking inspiration from their colour palettes, each quarter the restaurant will transform with an element of surprise and delight.

The first of these artist collaborations features photography from multidisciplinary artist Meighan Ellis, whose imagery also inspired the yellow colour palette that will be utilised throughout the restaurant in summer. Plates, serveware and cocktails also all reflect the hue of each season and will align with future collaborators. 

Charcoal-grilled Wairarapa oyster mushrooms

When it comes to the food, Executive Chef Gareth Stewart has endorsed his excellence with a menu of shared plates which are quite frankly some of the tastiest dishes I have tried in a long time. My entire family, including my young children, devoured the salt and pepper crispy pigs ears with green onion, chilli and a fried egg on top. Not something for everyone, and certainly not something I would expect my five- and seven-year-olds to enjoy, but this dish was so moreish we had to order another. The menu proudly puts equal emphasis on the garden, the ocean and the land, with some utterly impressive vegetarian dishes of a calibre not often seen in restaurants. The charcoal grilled Wairarapa oyster mushrooms with stinging nettle and sour cream were a standout.

Paula and Richard Sigley

Much thought has gone into creating dishes that are both easily shared, and have a level of  layered flavour and texture that elevates them well above what we have come to accept as ‘shared plates’. These are the Rolls-Royce of the category, and surprisingly, most are within the $20-$30 bracket — again something that’s becoming a rarity in this city.

A regularly evolving cocktail menu also embraces the leanings of the artist collaborations. The All England Club, with pink gin, Campari, coconut, lemon and cardamom strawberry soda is set to be the refreshing drink of the summer.

For someone who’s been eating, drinking and commentating on the Auckland food scene for more years than I wish to acknowledge, leaving the new Euro last night, I felt a warm fuzzy sense of both nostalgia and immense pride. Pride that, in a city that has grown exponentially in the past 20 years, we have hospitality operators like Richard and Paula Sigley, who are capable of capturing the cultural Zeitgeist of the moment. Euro 2.0 is destined to be a rousing success. I suggest you try it for yourself, I doubt you will be disappointed.


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Fang. Photo: Dish Cult

From world-class degustations to ground-breaking bars, these are our favourite places to eat and drink in Parnell

Tucked in between the city and the suburbs, Parnell has become quite the culinary destination in recent years. From some of the best brunch in town to world-class degustations and ground-breaking bars, these are our favourite places to wine and dine in Parnell.

Breakfast and beyond
Cali Press
Food: Health-skewed menu with a focus on cold-pressed juices, housemade vegan ‘mylks’, smoothies and a delicious selection of bowls, salads, sandwiches and organic toast with toppers to kick off your day.
We can’t go past the excellent toast options (the avo, goat feta and mint is particularly good), accompanied by a wholesome golden glow smoothie.
Location: 287-289 Parnell Road

Dolsot bibimbap from Simon & Lee

Simon & Lee
Food: Brunch favourites with a modern Korean bent. Think eggs Benedict with kimchi, bibimbap and fried chicken.
Recommendation: Despite the mouth-watering nature of pretty much everything on the menu, the bulgogi spaghetti is a definite standout, along with the dolsot bibimbap (if you’re not familiar with this dish, consult our guide here).
Location: 115 St Georges Bay Road

Winona Forever
Food: Cafe with an all-day menu and bakery with a fully-stocked cabinet of delicious treats, salads and pastries. 
Recommendation: It’s hard to pass up the lemon meringue creations, especially when they come in the form of thick, doorstopper slices.
Location: 100 Parnell Road

Food: Modern New Zealand restaurant fare with a menu that focuses on locally grown produce, delicate flavours and classics with a twist.
Recommendation: Between the delicious coffee and housemade juices, our pick has to be the wood mushrooms and perfectly poached egg on sourdough, add prosciutto.
Location: 82 Gladstone Road, Parnell

Goodness Gracious
Food: This popular drop-in is all about bagels (and great coffee).
The Wilbur is pretty phenomenal, with spiced pulled pork, housemade slaw and apple chutney sandwiched between a classic New York-style bagel.
Shop 10, 109-115 St Georges Bay Road

Domain and Ayr
Food: Relaxed cafe fare, organic coffee and a variety of cabinet food.
Recommendation: The 20-minute pancake is this place’s signature. An impossibly fluffy pancake with mascarpone, berry compote and a generous drizzle of maple syrup. If you feel like a little indulgence, this is just the ticket. 
492 Parnell Road

The nerano pizza from NSP

Long lunching
Non Solo Pizza
Food: The recently renovated courtyard provides the perfect setting to enjoy simply delicious Italian favourites.
Recommendations: The calamari fritti and crudo plate with fresh salmon, tuna and snapper is not to be missed, as are the beloved wood-fired pizzas.
Location: 259 Parnell Road

Food: This stalwart is serving up contemporary Asian fusion.
Recommendation: Despite the menu covering off a number of expertly executed classics, our current favourite has to be the duck with hoisin, green onion and broccolini. The express lunch menu is also an absolute godsend when you want to escape the office for something a little loftier than the usual.
Location: 91 St Georges Bay Road

Quench your thirst
Vibe: Euro-Latin dining bar offering an enticing line-up of drinks and some of the best tapas-style bar food in town.
One of our favourite thing to order from the drinks menu is a Barulho margarita. Accompany that with some tasty tapas and it’s the ideal place to settle in for a casual tipple.
Location: 7-15 Faraday Street

Pineapple on Parnell
Vibe: An intimate setting with a touch of eclectic character, ideal for a cosy drink with friends. If you’re lucky enough to be there on a night the piano is in use, you’ll be treated to some beautiful live music.
Recommendation: With a comprehensive cocktail list, our favourites can change with our moods. The Bloody Cobber, however, is always delicious, with blood orange, maraschino, lime, sherry and Mezcal.
Location: 207 Parnell Road

Vibe: Snugly situated in front of award-winning restaurant Pasture, newcomer Boxer offers just 11 seats for discerning drinkers to enjoy a bar experience like no other.
From tea ceremonies to housemade spirits, everything at Boxer is exemplary (but we must admit the elderflower martini goes down a treat). Bar snacks are non-negotiable, with pork fat pretzels mandatory.
235 Parnell Road

Rock lobster and prawn roll from The Golden Nest at Woodpecker Hill

Dinner time
The Golden Nest at Woodpecker Hill
Food: A revamp of Parnell favourite Woodpecker Hill, The Golden Nest offers fun and fresh Japanese and Korean flavours alongside bao, steamed buns and dumplings.
The menu says it all — the toasted rock lobster and prawn roll is so good it gets its own section. There’s also a Chop Chop Noodle outpost tucked inside if a spot of ramen takes your fancy.
Location: 196 Parnell Road

Food: Casual dine-in and takeaway Malaysian fare.
Recommendation: Renowned for the beef rendang (it’s been called the best in Auckland) this is one dish not to miss.
Location: 131 Parnell Road

Food: Flavoursome modern Korean and traditional Korean barbecue.
Recommendation: The barbecue option comprises meat (think galbisal, eye fillet and scotch fillet) that you cook at the table on a small grill — and it’s delicious. As far as the a la carte menu goes, the crispy calamari pancake and the salmon moochim salad are both absolute standouts.
Location: 100 Parnell Road (inside ‘The Rise’)

Chicken with Greek risotto from Gerome

Food: A delightful iteration of Greek cuisine where seasonal produce meets traditional Aegean flavours and cooking methods.
Recommendation: This place is perfect if you like sharing plates. Some of our go-tos include the pan-fried cheese with peppered figs and honey and the barbecued chicken thighs with Greek risotto and sheep’s milk cheese.
Location: 269 Parnell Road

Food: Sustainability-focused, farm to table degustation.
Recommendation: Eating at Pasture is an entirely unique culinary experience, which has recently been recognised as one of the World’s Best Restaurants by Food & Wine and Travel + Leisure. The restaurant only seats six people along a chefs table and is unmatched for more than just its food. The vibe is so cosy and intimate it feels like you’re dining in someone’s living room. Dishes are ever-changing and evolving on the set menu, but you can rely on proteins smoked and seared on the mānuka-fuelled fire, signature sourdough and deceptively simple dishes using local ingredients served at their best.
Location: 235 Parnell Road

Food: Offering Chinese fusion and Sichuan flavours with dumplings, small share dishes and larger main dishes.
Recommendation: Between the various sweet, salty and sour flavours, Fang’s pork belly that has been braised for 10 hours and is served with dark, sweet soy sauce, confit garlic and coconut carrot puree is definitely worth opting for.
Location: 100 Parnell Road (behind Winona Forever)

Feature image via Dish Cult


This prosciutto and eggplant pasta recipe makes for a simply delicious supper

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Fake it ’til you make it: The expert’s guide to self-tanning this summer

The art of self-tanning is fastidious and one that requires patience, precision and most importantly an exceptionally good formula. And, of course it’s far better for you and your skin if you resist the urge to sunbathe.

Two women who know their way around superior products are Zoë Philpott and Sarah Jackson Natan, founders of luxurious online beauty destination Inès. Bringing together French pharmacy favourites, and classic and cult products from around the world, the duo are local authorities on everything beauty. With summer around the corner, they’ve put together the definitive guide to a flawless faux glow that’s better than the real thing. 

Get ready for gloriously golden skin — minus the mess.

Get prepped
“The biggest mistake you can make when fake tanning at home is not spending the time to prep your skin properly.  The best results come when skin is as smooth and hydrated as possible. 

Start with a good and proper exfoliation — this will remove dead skin cells and ensure the tan absorbs evenly. The best way to do this is with a vigorous dry body brush; the Joanna Vargas Ritual Brush is a robust body brush that really gets the job done perfectly. This not only buffs away dead skin cells, it also smooths the skin, boosts circulation, helps minimise cellulite and stimulates lymphatic drainage. It’s incredibly good for you and excellent for the health and texture of your skin.  

Next, rinse off any dry skin in the shower and if you need a little extra exfoliation, use an oil free body scrub such as Cane & Austin’s Glycolic Body Scrub. This will buff, smooth and prime skin perfectly, especially on those notoriously rough patches like your knees, elbows and ankles — all those little areas where fake tan likes to collect and stain. 

Be wise with your product selections here. It’s important to use oil-free solutions, as oil-based scrubs and cleansers leave behind a residue that interferes with the efficacy of the tanners and can cause streaks too. And, if you’re tanning your face, the same rules apply — be sure to exfoliate with a cleanser or pad that includes some exfoliating acids to slough away dead and dull skin, and encourage even absorption.”

Moisture musts
“The most common cause of a patchy tan is dry skin, so it’s crucial to moisturise those notoriously tricky areas prior to application. Focus on wrists and hands, elbows, knees, ankles and feet — and perhaps around your nostrils if you’re face tanning.  

It’s a good idea to wait at least 10 minutes after showering until you are completely dry, then use a lightweight lotion such as Shani Darden Oil-Free Moisturiser or Dr Rogers Lotion for your face. For the body, our top pick is Codage Concentrated Body Milk, a super lightweight and nourishing formula that quickly absorbs and won’t mess with your tan. This will keep those areas from turning too dark or that nasty unwanted orange.”

The art of application
Always apply with a tanning mitt! Smooth on product in circular motions, blending and buffing the tan deeper into the epidermis. The more you buff and work the product into your skin, the better, this ensures a more even and streak free finish, helps to prolong the tan and encourages a better fade-out. 

Our preferred solution for tanning is a mousse as it’s a far easier to apply, sets faster and streaks less. Vita Liberata’s Phenomenal Mousse is in a league of its own when it comes to fake tanning — this mousse never streaks, is a completely clean formula and is odourless. Plus, it gives a real summer holiday colour not a bottle bronze, lasting exceptionally long, only leaving you with a perfect fade and no patchy bits. 

It’s best to use small amounts of the product each time – one or two pumps of mousse at a time and then, starting with your feet and ankles, working your way up to your shoulders to prevent any marks when you bend over.  Save your arms and hands for last and try not to race to wash your hands, just blend it gradually with your wrists and arms, as you don’t want white hands with bronzed arms.”

Prolong perfectly
“Once your tan has been applied, ensure skin is hydrated during the days that follow as hydrated skin will look more radiant and will ensure a more even fade. 

As oil breaks down your tan, opt for a hyaluronic-based body moisturiser and avoid any enzymatic body and skincare such as glycolic or lactic acids, as these can accelerate the fade time of tan.

To prolong your tan even longer, apply a low level DHA gradual tan such as Vita Liberata’s Gradual Tan. This will simultaneously hydrate skin as well as ‘top up’ your tan with a gradual buildable tan for prolonged golden tone that perfectly achieves that natural summer glow.”


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Seasonal Pavlova from Winona Forever

Stuck in a brunch rut? Step up your breakfast game at the most innovative cafes around town

While there’s no denying our hearts (and stomachs) will forever be fond of a good eggs Benedict and a fat stack of pancakes, there’s nothing quite like taking your taste buds for a test drive. From croffles to mushroom doughnuts, these eateries are dishing up some of the most innovative brunch fare in Auckland.

Winona Forever
Come for the cabinet treats, stay for brunch at Parnell’s popular Winona Forever cafe. Alongside offerings like soft shell crab bruschetta and lemon goat cheese omelette, you’ll find the insanely decadent seasonal pavlova, served with prosecco elderflower fruit jelly and heaps of seasonal fruit. A scoop of sorbet seals the deal. 

The Candy Shop
Newmarket’s The Candy Shop is the winner of Denizen’s inaugural Hospo Heroes Most Innovative Brunch award, and for good reason. Every item on the menu is a step above, with the croffles (yes, that means croissant waffles) coming with vanilla ice cream, chocolate crumbs and the option to add maple fried chicken. Drool.

Taking prime position in the back of St Kevins Arcade, a spot in Bestie’s sunny atrium may just be the best way to start the day. Bold and never boring, the menu features deliciously clever dishes, with the ‘Roast Dinner’ providing a cheeky take on a traditional favourite with corned beef, housemade hash cake, poached eggs, crispy Brussels sprouts, lemon sage stuffing and cranberry sauce.

Wild mushroom doughnuts from Honey Bones

Honey Bones
Like bees to honey, you’ll find both locals and hungry visitors migrating to Grey Lynn’s Honey Bones seven days a week for a taste of its inventive Middle Eastern-inspired menu. In a step up from classic mushrooms on toast, the wild mushroom doughnuts are nestled on a bed of whipped Persian feta with basil and zhug (a fresh, herby hot sauce). Be sure to add a perfectly poached egg.

Simon & Lee
Parnell’s Simon & Lee is the place to be for brunch, especially if you lean towards the lunch side of the portmanteau. Executing Modern Korean fare with undisputed expertise, Simon & Lee’s menu spans smashed peas on Freedom loaf and eggs Benedict with kimchi, to baos, dumplings and some of the best fried chicken in town.

Little Bird
Arguably the most innovative of them all, Little Bird perform all matter of delicious alchemy to create the raw, plant-based dishes that are served daily at its Ponsonby outpost. Chickpea and kimchi pancakes, lentil dosa and savoury herb waffles with cashew hollandaise are just some favourites.

Williams Eatery’s bone marrow toast

Williams Eatery
Don’t consider a stroll around Wynyard Quarter without pencilling in a brunch date at Williams Eatery. Sun-soaked and family-run, Williams draws on Lebanese and Italian flavours to create its delicious all-day menu, of which the bone marrow toast with smoked eggplant and sourdough is a particular favourite.

Ozone Coffee Roasters
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again — Ozone’s kedgeree is the dish that just keeps on giving. The Westmoreland Street coffee roasters do so much more than a good brew, with the aforementioned smoked fish kedgeree, field mushrooms with fermented chilli and Coromandel mussel fritters all offering a brunch experience above the usual.

Odettes Eatery
This City Works Depot favourite pumps from morning ’til night, with brunch being no exception. Experts at taking familiar favourites and elevating them to new heights, the prawn omelette with ricotta, spanner crab, fennel and lime oil is the perfect example of Odettes’ exceptional brunch offering.


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This new outdoor TV is here to take al fresco entertaining to the next level

With a vision to encourage technology to evolve as rapidly as its customers’ lifestyles, Samsung is acknowledging that now, people use their televisions for far more than, well, watching television. The evolution of the smart TV is something that Samsung has largely driven, pouring time and effort into researching and creating innovative products that make all of our lives easier. And this new release is set to continue the trend.

Recently announcing The Terrace and The Terrace Soundbar, Samsung has expanded its portfolio to create an entertainment system designed specifically for the elements. The Terrace is a robust, durable, 4K QLED television that is set to bring the entire experience of consuming TV indoors, to the outside — a bid by Samsung to utilise technology to further connect the spaces in a home.

The television itself offers a crystal-clear display thanks to anti-reflection and adaptive picture technology (allowing visibility without annoying glare), a brightness level of 2,000 nits (really bright) and a high motion rate, which makes it perfect for watching sports with friends or for tucking up with the family on a warm summer’s evening to watch a movie. 

The Terrace’s accompanying Soundbar completes Samsung’s outdoor theatre offering, delivering a high-quality, rich sound thanks to its distortion-cancelling technology that promises to drown out environmental sounds. 


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Arm candy: Embrace volume with puffed sleeves, this season’s statement style

Ballooning out from the body in a parade of sculptural forms, statement-making sleeves are shaping up to be this season’s must-wear style.

Whether you go full puff-ball in a dress that’s equally voluminous through the body and skirt, or focus on the arms while juxtaposing a sleek silhouette elsewhere, puffed sleeves are endlessly chic and available in myriad iterations.

Clockwise from left: Ballet blouse from Mahsa; Ganni tie neck shirt from Workshop; Bonita bodice from Paris Georgia; Beaufille rieu blouse from The Undone
From left: I Would Do It All Again dress from Maggie Marilyn; Concept dress from Aje.; Cecilie Bahnsen Mabel dress from Matches Fashion; Loewe shirt dress from Net-a-Porter


Square up with the new way to wear checks, the ultimate winning move for your next outfit

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Expand your reading horizons with these excellent new non-fiction books

While there’s nothing quite like melting into a delicious novel, you can’t beat the gripping appeal of a great non-fiction book. Eye-opening and educational, these recently-released works are sure to expand your horizons.

Belabored: A Vindication of The Rights of Pregnant Women by Lyz Lenz
A witty and irreverent defense of the autonomy of women, this book dives into how history, religion and culture have shaped the way we treat pregnant women, and makes an impassioned case for trusting them to choose how to treat their own bodies.  

Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson
Examining the underlying caste system that still holds sway in American society, this book’s Pulitzer-Prize-winning author examines the hierarchy of human division. Exhaustively-researched, revelatory and eye-opening, Caste takes us on a necessary journey below the surface.

Successful Aging by Daniel J. Levitin
Debunking the age-old myth that ageing equals unhappiness, neuroscientist Daniel J. Levitin outlines evidence-based tools around how we can embrace nature’s course, age joyously, and get the most from our lives. 

The Sirens of Mars by Sarah Stewart Johnson
Planetary scientist Sarah Stewart Johnson taps into our fascination with the ‘Red Planet’ by tracing the history of humans’ search for life on Mars. Carefully crafted and superbly told, this beguiling book really holds a mirror up to our anxieties around being alone in the universe.

Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman
What does it actually take to nurture a friendship? Here, Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman hilariously and honestly document the journey of their relationship over the last decade. Inspiring and entertaining in equal measure, this book asks us to reexamine how our own relationships are formed and preserved.

Vesper Flights by Helen Macdonald
Based around human connections with the natural world, Vesper Flights comprises a series of essays including accounts of wild boar, mushroom hunting, crane-watching in Hungary and the strange phenomena of birds’ nests. It is fascinating and informative, a study in observation from one of the world’s most respected nature writers. 

Begin Again: James Baldwin’s America and Its Urgent Lessons for Our Own by Eddie S. Glaude Jr.
James Baldwin has been here before. Here, Glaude delves into Baldwin’s journey as a longstanding civil rights activist in an effort to highlight, as Baldwin did, a way to push forward even in the face of the disillusionment and despair around race in America.

Empty Planet by Darrell Bricker and John Ibbitson
An award-winning journalist and a leading international social researcher make the provocative argument that, contrary to popular discourse, global population is on the brink of decline. Deeply-researched and utterly compelling, this book reimagines our demographic future, and offers guidance on how best to navigate its complexities. 


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This unmissable Krug Champagne and Pasture food event is bringing new meaning to the term luxury dining

This November, award-winning Parnell restaurant Pasture is to be the scene of a one-of-a-kind dining experience – even above and beyond its usual unparalleled standard. Held in collaboration with Krug Champagne, the evening is a celebration of the fact that renowned chef and Pasture owner Ed Verner has just been announced as New Zealand’s first ambassador of the Champagne House. 

‘Bring Your Own Krug’ (BYOK) will see Champagne lovers being treated to an exclusive twelve-course dinner experience on 18th November, curated by Verner, and matched perfectly with their own bottle of cellared Krug.

Designed to bring out the exquisite palate of Krug, from the sweet and nutty notes of the Grande Cuvée to the fullness of the Clos d’Ambonnay, the menu will be presented by Verner at his most creative, pushing the boundaries of Pasture’s typical offering. Featuring extravagant, luxurious ingredients, BYOK is to include the highest grades of caviar available in New Zealand, three rare cuts of 100-day-aged wagyu, blacklip pāua and a special, one night only twist on the cult Pasture crumpet.

There will be also be a Krug Champagne available for purchase on the night for those that don’t have cellared Krug, as well as Krug pairings available.

‘BYOK at Pasture’ will have three sittings available on Wednesday 18th of November: 5:30pm, 7:30pm and 9:30pm. With space for only three couples per session, and ticket prices at $475 per person, the intimacy and exclusivity of this event cannot be overstated. We advise moving quickly to secure your spot if you appreciate the finest things in life, and chefs who know what to do with them.

Secure your tickets to ‘BYOK at Pasture’ here.


This prosciutto and eggplant pasta recipe makes for a simply delicious supper

Denizen’s definitive guide to the best takeaways to try during lockdown


Dine al fresco with your double bubble this weekend with this magnificent giveaway from Amano
Regina George, Mean Girls
The Dude, The Big Lebowski
Villanelle, Killing Eve
Joe Exotic, Tiger King
Connell Waldron, featuring chain, Normal People
Patrick Bateman, American Psycho

10 last-minute Halloween costumes you can nail at short notice

The only thing scarier than Halloween is the fact that it is almost upon us. If you’re feeling decidedly disorganised in the costume department, never fear. From the obvious to the obscure, these Halloween costume ideas are sure to get your creative juices flowing.

A person surviving 2020
Bathrobe, bottle of wine, newspaper with disturbing headlines. You get the picture, you’re living it. 

A cast member from ‘Tiger King’
Dust off that flower crown from 2015 and bust out your best leopard print — voilà, you’re Carole Baskin. Cowboy hat, speed dealer sunnies and some form of patterned shirt — hello Joe Exotic. 

Connell’s chain
No, we’re not suggesting you dress up as Normal People‘s Paul Mescal, but rather his wildly appreciated silver chain. Go subtle with your own, or obvious with a larger-than-life version from Bunnings.

A TikTok star
Got a cropped cardigan and a half-decent memory? Great, add a few routines to your repertoire and you’re ready to go viral.

A long-haul Work From Home employee
Dress to impress as you would for Zoom — business on top, sweatpants (or no pants) on the bottom. 

A stylish villain
Look no further than your own wardrobe to create a sophisticated villian from scratch. Got a dramatic dress? Consider yourself Villanelle from Killing Eve. How about a sharp suit? Add a clear raincoat and American Psycho‘s Patrick Bateman is in sight.

The Dude from ‘The Big Lebowski
Robe, sunnies, white tank, slides. Oh — and don’t forget the White Russian.

Craig Foster aka the guy from ‘My Octopus Teacher
Snuggle up to a plush octopus toy in your swimming trunks. Add goggles, snorkel and flippers for extra points. 

A couple from Love is Blind
Got a piece of cardboard lying around? Recreate a dividing wall between you and your boo to channel the hit reality TV show.

A mouse, duh
Mean Girls is the gift that keeps on giving, so make like one of the Plastics and enjoy maximum return for minimum effort with something risqué paired with some form of animal ears. 


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Meet the New Zealand jeweller bringing one-of-a-kind sapphire engagement rings to the world

An engagement ring is one of, if not the most, personal things we’ll ever wear. As the intention is for the wearer to be sporting their engagement ring for many years to come, the notion of choosing a ring that reflects the wearer and couple’s individuality is of utmost importance.

Harnessing this philosophy is local engagement ring company Nolan & Vada. Designed and handcrafted in New Zealand, with loved-up customers all over the world, Nolan & Vada specialises in coloured stone engagement rings, the demand for which is on the rise.

“We believe every person and couple is unique, and colour is so personal,” says the company’s founder Bharat Jain. “Our rings help people express this uniqueness, and help their individuality as a couple shine through.” 

Colours hold powerful associations, helping us to channel a mood or celebrate a memory. Those who engage in colour therapy will know the power of various shades to manifest particular emotions, and what could be a more beautiful emotion to channel than love and commitment? 

The team at Nolan & Vada uses sapphires to create their stunning, bespoke rings. While we all will be familiar with classic, royal blue sapphires, the stones present in various memorising shades: from deep, forest green to sparkling, blush pink. Each stone is rare and sure to appeal to those who eschew the conventional for something even more special. 

Nolan & Vada is also a sound choice for those who keep environmental considerations top of mind. Its sapphires are hand-picked from reputable traders who prioritise earth-friendly practices, and most of the metals used are produced from recycled jewellery waste within New Zealand and Australia.

With 50 percent of the company’s sales coming from overseas, people all over the world are choosing Nolan & Vada for custom designs. “The most exciting journey is choosing the gemstones,’ says Bharat. The happy couple might choose a stone that matches one of their eye colours, and the Nolan & Vada team has even helped someone choose a ring that matches the colour of a prized bicycle. 

“We work really hard to choose the right gems for the couple, and work around the design on the centre stone.” 

Interestingly, in a recent study conducted by the jeweller, 40 percent of the women surveyed said they would seek out coloured gemstones as opposed to a diamond engagement ring. With such demand for their exquisitely designed and finished rings, the team at Nolan & Vada is excited to be growing their horizons, creating sparkling works of art from our corner of the world, helping couples all across the globe capture the essence of their love.

What could be more romantic than that?


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