Sapore di Malfy at Síso.

Sìso is transporting us to the Amalfi Coast with this convivial, month-long pop-up 

The Amalfi Coast’s beauty is found in its breathtaking surroundings and delectable Mediterranean cuisine, and beloved Remuera establishment Síso is replicating this very essence with its upcoming ‘Sapore di Malfy’ series.

From the 8th of March to the 12th of April, Sìso’s Sapore di Malfy menu will offer a raft of exquisite bites and thirst-quenching cocktails. Each beverage will incorporate one of the four Malfy Gin varietals, from ‘The Santorini Sunset’, a zesty and vibrant infusion of Malfy Con Arancia, Aperol, Liqueur Farigoule, lemon and egg whites, to ‘Under The Tuscan Sun’, a rich, fruity concoction of Malfy Con Limone, Crème de Mure, lemon, raspberry and Deutz Rosé.

From left: Under the Tuscan Sun, Mediterranean G&T and Santorini Sunset cocktails, Malfy Mezze.

We suggest you savour these sophisticated beverages with the flavoursome Saporo di Malfy offering, which includes succulent Bluff oysters and a lavish Malfy Mezze. A fresh feast for two, the latter is a delectable platter that includes stone-baked sourdough flatbread with nduja butter, market fish crudo with heirloom tomatoes and shaved stone fruits, marinated Lebanese cucumber with buttermilk curds and lemon za’atar, and smoked prosciutto with burrata.

From left: Malfy Gin Rosa, Malfy Amore Mio cocktail.

A lavish affair transporting us to sun-kissed summer days on the Italian coast, a taste of Sapore di Malfy should not go amiss.

Síso

311 Remuera Road
Remuera
Auckland 1050

www.sisobarandeatery.co.nz

Gastronomy

The Alderman is the laid-back and light-filled new eatery in Henderson you need to know
Denizen’s definitive guide to the best toasted sandwiches in Auckland
Embrace the season with our edit of all of the compellingly great reasons to head out this winter

Runway report: Our favourite moments from Milan Fashion Week’s Fall 2023 season

There was a sense of understatement that anchored the Fall 2023 collections unveiled over the last few days at Milan Fashion Week. Dubbed ‘stealth wealth,’ by some, ‘bland-standing’ by others, it was fashion’s reaction to the times in which we live. The tide on ostentatious logo bashing has turned in a big way and luxury fashion is (rightly) shifting focus.

For the upcoming season, the value of a garment will be determined, it seems, by cut and fabrication‚ and not so much for its viral runway or street style moments. It also speaks to our collective ‘ick’ at wearing clothes that are very clearly expensive. Fashion that clearly signified wealth might have carried clout last year, but now, all it delivers is a good dose of cringe. In the absence of outrageous logomania or over-the-top collections, the standout moments at this recent Milan Fashion Week speak to those who appreciate the incredible craft (and craftspeople) at play in this industry.

From Matthieu Blazy’s exceptional high-fashion-for-real-life at Bottega Veneta (many insiders crowned it their favourite collection of the week) to Prada’s contemporary uniform and an interim collection by Gucci’s design team that pulled from a number of the brand’s iconic house codes (Gucci’s new creative director, Sabato De Sarno, will show his first collection in September), there was plenty to get excited about in Milan. Here we round up the key shows and the style takeaways you need to know for the season ahead.

Prada

“Mainly what I care about now is to give importance to what is modest, to value modest jobs, simple jobs, and not only extreme beauty or glamour.” Miuccia Prada on Fall 2023

Milan Fashion Week: Prada

The idea of a uniform reinvented underpinned the aesthetic at Prada’s Fall 2023 collection. From military motifs made for the contemporary wardrobe to the revival of the skirt (a trend that has been brewing for the last few seasons) in a variety of shapes and iterations to pieces that elevated everyday wear in interesting structural and stylistic ways (think puffy parkas and miniskirts and impeccable, versatile tailoring) Prada demonstrated, once again, why it is so universally revered, season to season. Here, the idea was to enhance reality, not escape from it, resulting in a collection that felt deeply tethered to now, and to the kind of longevity and practicality (and pizzazz) that people really want from their wardrobes.

Fendi

“It’s about real dressing: that Italian sophisticated woman who you know, that becomes global.” Kim Jones on Fall 2023

Milan Fashion Week: Fendi

Spinning Fendi’s beloved house codes into a fresh offering, Kim Jones did what he does best at Milan Fashion Week and served up a collection that both honoured the house at which he is the artistic director of womenswear, and gave us something new. Here, Jones called on menswear principles like strong silhouettes and tailoring to deliver a sophisticated edge to his delicate, feminine aesthetic. In fact, Jones garnered inspiration from Delfina Delettrez Fendi’s own personal style, which resulted in the prevailing tones of blue and brown, as well as the pleated skirting and the super-high, clear-heeled boots that marched down the runway.

Gucci

“The show unfolds within the anatomy of the House… In the inner sanctum of the Gucci Hub… Surrounded by seats crafted in innovative Demetra material, spherical podiums represent the collaborative circularity at the heart of Gucci’s creative community.” Gucci show notes for Fall 2023

Until Gucci’s new Creative Director Sabato de Sarno takes the reins officially in September (when his first collection for the house will be unveiled) it is down to the wider Gucci design team to engineer the brand’s interim collections together. For Fall 2023, the creative talent on hand in the brand’s workroom was clear, with a line-up that pulled from a number of iconic house codes (from sexy, Tom Ford-era silhouettes to hints of Alessandro Michele’s renowned eclecticism) and felt distinctly detached from specific trends. Accessories saw a revival of horse-bit handbags, double G buckles, elongated sunglasses and more. It was a parade of revived Gucci signatures that felt like it was preparing us for the brand’s new direction come September.

Giorgio Armani

“When staging the everyday, Giorgio Armani consistently suggests clothes that bring out the person, not the character.” Giorgio Armani show notes for Fall 2023 

Milan Fashion Week: Giorgio Armani

In creating a collection that ultimately, felt overwhelmingly optimistic, playful and fun, Giorgio Armani drew inspiration from the culture of Elizabethan theatre. Theatrical costume tropes were interwoven with Armani’s signature tailoring to create pieces that were fresh, modern and chic — think woollen berets, form-fitting jackets, skirt-and-silk-blouse pairings and textiles that tied with iridescent tones or eye-catching embroidery. With a colour palette inspired by the work of photographer Guy Bourdin (deep blues paired with swathes of pink and purples, often set against stoic neutrals, blacks and greys) this collection, again, puts a unique twist on the idea of everyday-wear and was a standout of the week.

Bottega Veneta

“I wanted to look at what makes people gather together in a place without hierarchy, where everyone is invited.” Matthieu Blazy on Bottega Veneta Fall 2023

Deemed a triumph by almost every fashion insider in attendance, Matthieu Blazy’s Fall 2023 collection for Bottega Veneta was a masterclass — both conceptually and in terms of craft. Blazy, inspired by the idea of Carnevale, wanted to create clothes that felt devoid of hierarchy, clothes to which everyone felt welcome, and he did this via looks that were disparate and varied (here, there really was something for everyone). Standout moments were around the designer’s unique fabrication (creating weightless leather pieces that did not look like they were crafted from leather at all or a fringed coat that looked embroidered by had actually been woven in one piece). Ultimately it was a joyful, sophisticated, inherently wearable collection that drew the fashion world willingly into Blazy’s universe and made him one of the most exciting names to watch at the moment.

Coveted

Chaumet’s exquisite tiaras are the luxury jeweller’s crowning glory — here, we explore the maison’s history of haute headpieces
Leather weather is here, and these are the sleek jackets to add to your wardrobe this season
Add a flash of bling to your daily classics with these everyday diamonds
NZ International Fraud Film Festival
Florence + The Machine
Auckland Arts Festival

March Culture Guide: Everything to do, see and book this month

As we find ourselves well and truly into the swing of the year, a calendar packed with cultural events is keeping us excited for the months ahead. From fairs and festivals to some of the biggest names in music, here is our full March Culture Guide to satiate your creative needs this season.

March Culture Guide: Aotearoa Art Fair

Aotearoa Art Fair

One of the most exciting cultural events of 2023, the Aotearoa Art Fair, is returning once again to Auckland’s The Cloud. Offering collectors and art-lovers the chance to view and buy pieces from leading galleries showcasing the work of more than 180 artists, the March edition will see new galleries, new artwork, more international artists, large-scale sculpture works and so much more.
Wednesday, 1st March — Sunday, 5th March, The Cloud

March Culture Guide: Harry Styles

Harry Styles

Finally bringing the show we have seen so much on social media to our shores, man of the moment Harry Styles will give the performance of his life, with the Auckland show marking the end of his Love On Tour extravaganza. Expect the full discography of his new certified bops, alongside a few older classics (One Direction, we’re looking at you), to make the night one of our most memorable yet.
Tuesday, 7th March, Mt Smart Stadium

Flamingo Pier

Having been postponed from its earlier date with recent weather events, this weekend sees the much-awaited return of Flamingo Pier to Waiheke Island. Set at the picturesque Rangihoua Estate and now into its ninth year, the festival is a haven for lovers of dance music — featuring some of our favourite local names like Nathan Haines and Jaimie Webster Haines, alongside internationals Harvey Sutherland, Panorama Bar regular Gabrielle Kwarteng and Dekmantel favourite Suze Ijó.
Friday, 3rd March — Sunday, 5th March, Rangihoua Estate

Wicked: The Musical

In this captivating tale, we are invited to witness the emergence of an improbable, yet profound bond between two young women who meet as sorcery students at Shiz University. Glinda, the adored and fair-haired beauty, befriends Elphaba, a misunderstood and distinctly chartreuse-skinned figure. The upcoming production of this most-loved musical features an all-New Zealand cast, boasting the esteemed Tina Cross, a beloved figure in Kiwi music circles, in the role of Madame Morrible. This show promises to captivate audiences of all ages and backgrounds, transporting them to a world of unparalleled enchantment — one of the crown jewels of our March Culture Guide. Tickets are available here.
Friday, 31st March — Saturday, 22nd April, SkyCity Theatre

Rupi Kaur

Having pioneered a career in social media prose, encouraging readers everywhere to think differently about how we engage with poetry, Rupi Kaur is finally bringing her lauded World Tour to New Zealand this March. Performing in both Wellington and Auckland, Kaur will share some of her most beloved works, alongside new, unpublished pieces, set to an original music score. A divine literary affair indeed.
Friday, 24th March, Auckland Town Hall

March Culture Guide: Florence + The Machine

Florence + The Machine

Few voices are as instantly recognisable as that of Florence Welch, frontwoman of Florence + The Machine, who return to our shores later this month. The Dance Fever Tour sees the act playing to New Zealand fans for the first time in four years. With the album recorded in London over the course of the pandemic, it feels like the soundtrack to the last sordid few years.
Tuesday, 21st March, Spark Arena

Light from Tate: 1700s to Now

From the collections of Tate, this exhibition highlights how light has enraptured artists throughout time, manifested through painting, photography, sculpture, installation, drawing and moving images. It showcases the works of illustrious artists such as JMW Turner, Claude Monet, Wassily Kandinsky, and Olafur Eliasson, accompanied by installations that create a plethora of sensory experiences. Spanning from the 18th century to the present day, the opening weekend (this weekend) comprises two full days of food, music, crafts and free talks for anyone curious about the intricacies of art.
Wednesday, 1st March — Sunday, 25th June, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki

Auckland Arts Festival

This March sees the enviable return of the Auckland Arts Festival to the beating cultural heart of the City. Featuring what might be the event’s biggest programme yet, full of some of our greatest national talents, and visiting guests from further afield, Aucklanders are treated to 18 days of immersion in the arts. Think exhibitions, live performances and workshops, of which the complete programme can be discovered here.
Thursday, 9th March — Sunday, 26th March, various locations

March Culture Guide: Lorde

Lorde

Returning for a ‘reintroduced’ Solar Power tour, and earning a spot in our March Culture Guide, our national darling will be playing a one-off show at Western Springs this weekend, celebrating the much-anticipated 2020 album with her most adoring fans. One of nine stops on her first tour in five years, where other destinations include Upper Moutere and a postponed Havelock North show, it is evident that this kind of show is not to be missed.
Saturday, 4th March, Western Springs

NZ International Fraud Film Festival

The upcoming return of the NZ International Fraud Film Festival to Auckland presents a unique opportunity for attendees to delve into the underbelly of fraud and its effects on society. The Festival’s programme promises to explore a range of topics, including the psychology of fraudsters, institutional corruption, forgery, and cybercrime, and will showcase several films such as The Talented Mr. Rosenberg, Gaming Wall St., Nothing Lasts Forever, The Lost Leonardo, and China Hackers. Those wishing to attend can secure free tickets to select events, including a session with the renowned investigative team Fair Go. More information is available here.
Wednesday, 29th March & Thursday, 30th March, Q Theatre

Beacon Festival

March sees the post-covid return of Beacon Festival, which this year expands to two days of house and electronic dance music on the iconic Auckland waterfront. Drawing an utterly impressive international line-up, single-day tickets are also available for those looking to curb any potential over-enthusiasm ahead of the work week.
Saturday, 18th March & Sunday, 19th March, Queens Wharf

Culture

We talk to author Trent Dalton on his dark childhood, finding light between the cracks, and the girl who saved him
Meet Kura Kai, the local charity addressing food poverty in Auckland’s high schools
Ain’t no party like an Ayrburn party! See inside Ayrburn’s inaugural Winter Ball

Watch the Gucci Fall Winter 2023 fashion show live from Milan

As the clock nears 1am on Saturday the 25th of February, the fashion world is turning its gaze to Gucci’s new season unveiling at Milan Fashion Week. 

With the lauded Italian fashion house set to showcase its women’s autumn-winter 2023 collection, the previous collection Gucci Twinsburg is still distinctly in our minds. There, mesmerising themes of self-reflection, illusion and identity were toyed with by former Creative Director Alessandro Michele, as twin models descended the runway in identical pairs

And while Michele was known for his romantic and eclectic influences on the brand, we are eagerly anticipating our first glimpse at the sartorial influence of his recently-named successor, Sabato de Sarno, who will reveal his debut collection in September. 

To immerse yourself in Gucci’s fall winter 2023 runway show, set at the Gucci Hub headquarters in Milan, watch the below video from 1am tomorrow morning, the 25th of February (NZST). 

Coveted

Chaumet’s exquisite tiaras are the luxury jeweller’s crowning glory — here, we explore the maison’s history of haute headpieces
Leather weather is here, and these are the sleek jackets to add to your wardrobe this season
Add a flash of bling to your daily classics with these everyday diamonds
Food Truck Collective vendor Taste of Rwanda.

Three of the tastiest food events you need to check out this weekend

As another sunny weekend is anticipated, we’re looking ahead to all of the culinary events drawing us outdoors this weekend. Featuring some household names alongside new future classics, these are the three food events you need to discover this weekend — if nothing else.

Baby G Burger at Crayon Classic

It’s been quite some time since we’ve indulged in Baby G’s beloved smash burgers. So, come Sunday afternoon, this is precisely where you’ll find us. Catering to the hungry masses at the inaugural Crayon Classic at Pompallier Tennis Club (which, by all accounts, sounds like an epic event for anyone looking to jump into a little casual weekend tennis) alongside an Almighty hydration station, it’s the most delicious burger event to take in the final hours of the week.
Sunday, 3pm — 8pm.

Baby G Burger.

Food Truck Night at Victoria Park

An early pioneer of the Auckland pop-up scene, Food Truck Collective’s tasty nights are back this Friday, taking over Victoria Park for anyone wanting to do knock-offs right. From 5pm, a whole host of food trucks will converge on the inner-city park, such as Miso Ra, ​​Double Dutch Fries, Taste of Rwanda and Lalele Organic Gelato and Waffles (should you have saved room for dessert). This is the kind of affair you’ll want to grab your group and a picnic blanket, before settling in for the late afternoon.
Friday, 5pm — 9pm.

From left: Food Truck Collective vendors Sweet as Bowl, Local Legend Eats.

Broke Boy Taco Residency at Ante Social Club

Now a month into a residency at Ponsonby’s Ante Social Club, Broke Boy Taco’s sought-after morsels are once again becoming the talk of the town. Known for creating Mexican-inspired street food inspired by his days in San Francisco’s Mission District, Sean Yarborough is quickly making a name for himself as the purveyor of some of the tastiest tacos in town at all the best food events in Auckland.
Thursday to Saturday, 5pm — 9pm.

Broke Boy Taco.

Gastronomy

The Alderman is the laid-back and light-filled new eatery in Henderson you need to know
Denizen’s definitive guide to the best toasted sandwiches in Auckland
Embrace the season with our edit of all of the compellingly great reasons to head out this winter

A curated roundup of the best new fashion arrivals, hand-picked by our editors

Whether you’re heading out this weekend or are simply in search of something new to add to your wardrobe, there are a number of new fashion arrivals to be found at our favourite boutiques. From luxurious womenswear at Faradays to fresh men’s and women’s pieces at Workshop, as well as a raft of exquisite jewellery (if you really feel like treating yourself) whatever you have your sartorial sights set on, here, there’s something to suit every style.

And in a bid to make things easy for you, our editors have curated some of their favourite new fashion arrivals from the stores and brands around town. Shop ’til you drop, we say.

From top left: Stripe Accent Monogram T-Shirt from Louis Vuitton, Loewe Anagram sunglasses from Parker & Co., Elsa Peretti Bean design Wire Necklace from Tiffany & Co., Givenchy Jacquard Soft Cup Bra from Faradays, 30 MONTAIGNE reversable belt from Christian Dior, Soft wool silk jacket from Gucci, David Yurman Carlyle Bracelet from Partridge, LOULOU STUDIO Cadar Wide Leg pants from Workshop, Soft padded sabots from Prada, CHLOÉ small woody tote from Workshop.

From top left: ACNE STUDIOS vintage denim jacket from Workshop, Run sneaker from Gucci, Lock Bangle fro Tiffany & Co., VALENTINO III Irregular Sunglasses from Faradays, Short-sleeved heavy cotton shirt from Prada, GIVENCHY G-Tote Medium Shop Bag from Faradays, COMMON PROJECTS original achilles from Workshop, Patek Philippe Complications REF. 5935A-001 watch from Partridge, Draped Relaxed Pants from Louis Vuitton.

Coveted

Chaumet’s exquisite tiaras are the luxury jeweller’s crowning glory — here, we explore the maison’s history of haute headpieces
Leather weather is here, and these are the sleek jackets to add to your wardrobe this season
Add a flash of bling to your daily classics with these everyday diamonds

Sweat smarter not harder: 5 easy ways to get more out of your workout

While there has been a lot of discussion around different types of exercise (see here for Denizen’s definitive guide to the best fitness trainers in Auckland), there has been less around what we should be doing maximise the effects of our chosen workout. From the benefits of coffee to the importance of active warm-ups, here we round up five easy-to-implement tips that will boost your daily workout and result in meaningful, longer-lasting results.

Drink your coffee

We all know that caffeine delivers energy, but the boost it gives to athletes across virtually any sport (from weightlifting to marathon running) is significant and scientifically proven. As the most commonly consumed psychoactive substance in the world, caffeine is the most studied, too. Consequently, we know that it tends to improve athletic performance by an average of 2 to 5 percent (although exactly how much benefit one gets from it depends on genetics and other environmental factors). So, how does this work? For starters, caffeine binds to the receptors in our nervous systems responsible for making us feel drowsy, and stops that from happening. It also helps our muscles operate with more force by allowing them to contract at a faster rate. So the next time you’re feeling unmotivated to pound the pavement, perhaps start with a freshly-brewed cup of your favourite coffee… it might make all the difference.

Do a dynamic warm-up

Instead of starting your gym session or run with that classic stretch sequence we were taught in primary school PE, warm up your muscles with a series of dynamic, mobility-focused exercises to boost your daily workout instead. This means replacing the bend-and-hold style warm-up with light movements like squats, leg extensions or other exercises that will mimic the more intense ones you are about to perform. Blood flow will be better, muscles will respond faster to your workout and recovery will be more straightforward. Runners, for instance, should do 10 minutes of lunges, leg swings, knee raises and squats before starting out.

Add MCT oil to your pre- or post-workout meal

MCT or medium-chain tryglicerate oil has become a popular superfood among athletes for a raft of supposed benefits around weight loss, energy, gut health and more. It is made of medium-length chains of fats called triglycerides which are easier for the body to absorb and contain about 10 percent less fat than long-chain tryglicerates (found in other nut and seed oils). Not only has MCT oil been shown to increase the release of two hormones that promote the feeling of fullness (peptide YY and leptin) but the way it is broken down by our bodies means that it enters our cells without being broken down, making it an immediate source of energy (both for your body and for your brain). In addition, taking MCT oil before a workout may help your body use fat rather than carbs for energy, and it can also help to reduce lactic buildup.

Eat protein before bed

While protein has long been touted as the fitness fanatic’s best friend for its ability to support muscle repair and growth, research has shown that eating some protein (yoghurt or cottage cheese, for instance) just before bed actually keeps this process ticking along overnight. Work smarter, not harder we say.

Get a massage on your day off

Beyond soothing aching muscles, treating yourself to a massage on your rest day is crucial to getting the best results from all the effort you’ve put in. Studies show that having a post-workout massage can actually influence genes in your muscles to decrease inflammation and increase mitochondria (which support recovery). In order to get fitter, rest days are just as crucial as workouts (where one without the other will be totally ineffective), so why not optimise them too?

Wellbeing

Could this be the new benchmark for anti-wrinkle treatments?
Denizen’s definitive guide to Auckland’s best yoga studios
Ask an expert: We chat to Sarah Mitchell Weston on all things winter immunity
The Takapoto Classic.
The Landrover Defender.
Takapoto Estate.

Your look inside this year’s Takapoto Classic, from showjumping to Land Rover’s exciting activations

One event on our late summer social calendar is the Takapoto Classic, one of the country’s most distinguished equestrian events of the year. With the support of like-minded brands such as Land Rover, this world-class showjumping competition has evolved into a celebratory affair that is as much about the experiences on offer as it is about the competition itself. And as we’ve borne witness to this year, the event is only poised to further its international stature, drawing the most discerning guests from across the globe to the annual Waikato-based affair.

Held at Takapoto Estate on the shores of Lake Karapiro, this annual tournament attracts New Zealand’s most elite equestrians (and a burgeoning roster of international riders) to compete over 10 days. The estate itself is a miraculous destination; a 600-acre property spanning three waterfront kilometres, home to a vineyard, boutique accommodation, and sought-after function areas, alongside world-class equestrian facilities and a horse-breeding program. Few other destinations in New Zealand meet this calibre, and as such, it is a fitting home for such a storied affair.

The Landrover Defender.

Courtesy of its sponsors, this year’s Takapoto Estate showjumping experience includes (beyond the horses) a delicious lineup of local cuisine from boutique food trucks, as well as award-winning New Zealand wines for spectators to enjoy while watching on. There are cafes, bars and a boutique trade village, which plays host to other adrenaline-inducing activities. Land Rover, for instance, has partnered with Takapoto to offer its Defender Off-Road Experience, a drive activation that showcases the capabilities and prowess of the latest Defender for those daring enough to drive (a brand representative can chauffeur if you’d prefer to ride shotgun).

Elsewhere, you’ll find the PHEV Display, highlighting the best in the brand’s latest innovations of hybrid luxury, alongside customer hosting (think private dinner functions and cocktail evenings), which furthers Land Rover’s longstanding, international relationship with the equestrian field — which they describe as part of their DNA. From its historic sponsorship of Burghley Horse trials and the three-day event in Kentucky, it is evident that showjumping and horse riding is something that has long been interwoven with Land Rover’s heritage and prestige.

The Takapoto Classic.

Closer to home, Land Rover continues to build on this idea, having recently partnered with Equestrian Sport New Zealand to support our national high-performance team in training. Simultaneously, the partnership’s intention extends to a grassroots level, where the two forces hope to elevate all levels of equestrian in New Zealand.

Ultimately, the Takapoto Classic is an event that, should you feel even the slightest regret about not attending this year, calls to be earmarked in your dairy for 2024. Hosting some of the most discerning individuals with an appetite for adventure, it is the kind of experience that truly caters to all — and is something we should all get behind.

Culture

We talk to author Trent Dalton on his dark childhood, finding light between the cracks, and the girl who saved him
Meet Kura Kai, the local charity addressing food poverty in Auckland’s high schools
Ain’t no party like an Ayrburn party! See inside Ayrburn’s inaugural Winter Ball
Sem Restaurant & Wine Bar in Lisbon, Portugal.

This March, acclaimed Portuguese restaurant Sem is coming to Auckland for two nights only

Celebrated by locals and international travellers alike, Lisbon restaurant and wine bar Sem is known for more than just its exquisite Portuguese cuisine. Its name means ‘without’ in Portuguese, and the award-winning establishment is dedicated to a bold zero-waste kitchen policy to create a net positive effect on the environment. Food offcuts are fermented and preserved, no plastic packaging or rubbish bins are in sight, and produce is foraged or grown through regenerative agriculture.

Restaurant Sem Black Garlic and Sourdough Bread with Tamari Vinegar Poached Shiitakes, Grilled Matsutake and a Wastershire Emulsion with Julienned Matsutake Legs dressed in a Smoked Mushroom and Chilli Miso Oil.

With such an audacious approach to sustainable cuisine, it is perhaps no surprise that an element of homegrown ingenuity is at play. Sem is co-run by Kiwi chef George McLeod (formerly of London’s Silo) and his Brazilian-Portuguese partner Lara Espirito Santo. And for the first time ever, McLeod and Santo are set to bring a piece of Portugal to New Zealand, teaming up with an old friend and local hospitality personality Carlo Buenaventura of Bar Magda on Saturday the 11th and Sunday the 12th of March.

From left: Bar Magda Eggplant Relleno with Cucumber, Wakame and Sauce Morado, Watermelon Cocktail with Strawberry, Mezcal, Aperol, Yellow Chartreuse and Mint Sherbet.

Speaking of the extravaganza, Buenaventura tells me we can expect a memorable four-course feast (including cocktail and wine pairings). Melding the best of Portuguese and Buenaventura’s native Filipino cuisine, dishes will feature the freshest baby corn, oysters, seafood, venison and more. 

From left: Bar Magda interior, Market Fish en Papillote with Preserved Fennel, Wakame, Tobiko and Sauce Pinangat.

“Boa comida e bons momentos!” Buenavetura says, translating to “Good food and good times!” It is a motto he lives by and speaks to his unrivalled passion for creating daring culinary experiences.

Set to take the local dining scene by storm, secure your tickets to the Sem and Bar Magda collaboration here. Held on Saturday 11 and Sunday 12 March 2023, tickets are $115, or $180 including drinks pairings. 

Bar Magda

25B Cross St
Newton
Auckland 1010

www.barmagda.co.nz

Gastronomy

The Alderman is the laid-back and light-filled new eatery in Henderson you need to know
Denizen’s definitive guide to the best toasted sandwiches in Auckland
Embrace the season with our edit of all of the compellingly great reasons to head out this winter

Empowering women to save, Audi and The Curve have joined forces — and we have an epic giveaway to celebrate

In line with their aim to forge a more progressive future, Audi has unveiled a new partnership with The Curve — the revolutionary financial literacy platform created by Victoria Harris and Sophie Hallwright. A perfect pairing, the partnership was born from Sophie’s well-documented desire to own her ‘dream car’ (an Audi e-tron) and her savings journey to get there. The two entities have tapped into their shared values to create a helpful tool that will do just that — the Savings Calculator.

Simple and user-friendly, the Audi x The Curve online Savings Calculator not only makes savings goals feel achievable (no matter how audacious) but provides tailored, monthly payment suggestions that will actually get you there. It demonstrates how saving for big-ticket items — like a dream car — can be easy and shifts the narrative for women who have historically been left behind in the conversations around making big purchases themselves. The difference between the ways in which men are empowered to save and to spend on big-ticket items, versus the ways that women are more-or-less disregarded in that pursuit is something that both The Curve and Audi feel passionately about. “We are always looking for new ways to drive a more progressive future,” Audi’s Marketing Manager, Amy de Vries explains. “We want to give New Zealand women the confidence to set a significant savings goal this year, regardless of how much money they earn or what they are saving for.”

For Audi, this partnership comes off the back of campaigns like last year’s Scrap Girl Car initiative, in which they invited Kiwis to take part in scrapping outdated gender stereotypes by scrawling messages on an actual Audi RS e-tron GT, transforming it from stereotypical pink to black over a number of days.

Here, we sit down with Victoria and Sophie from The Curve to talk about their savings tips and tricks, their dream car, and how their partnership with Audi is helping women get ahead.

Tell me about The Curve’s new partnership with Audi. What brought you together? 

Originally we saw their Scrap Girl Car campaign and were really impressed with the way a global brand like Audi was not afraid to start conversations about important topics like gender diversity. We thought it was really cool how an automotive brand was going out of its way to be inclusive, which is obviously something we are big on at The Curve, and not something we see in the motoring industry very often.

Before we spoke with Audi, I admitted on The Curve’s Instagram account that I’m ashamed of my car and that I’m also ashamed of admitting that I want to buy a new one. This turned out to be an extremely relatable topic for our community and it posed multiple questions — why do women feel guilty about buying expensive items? Why shouldn’t we be able to spend our hard-earned money on whatever we want?

Audi completely understood these issues and wanted to help us change this outdated mentality, empower women to set a significant savings goal this year, and help them to achieve it. This is where the savings calculator was born.

Why has the discussion around savings & money management historically left women behind?

For generations, women were less likely to be the ‘breadwinners’ of the household, or have any income of their own, and as a result, women were left out of all kinds of financial discussions which really shouldn’t be the case and isn’t the case in many instances now.

A mutual friend once said to us “my dad only discussed investing with my brothers, he thought I wasn’t interested”. This is a narrative we hear a lot, and this lack of financial literacy is self-perpetuated by not talking about money or savings. For so long we have been conditioned to think that conversations about money are rude but it’s so important to break that stigma. The more we talk the more we’re all going to learn. 

Despite women now being much more equal participants in the workforce, and more equal contributors to household finances, the education and knowledge around investing and how to successfully grow our wealth is still lacking. The investing and saving knowledge gap continues to compound the wealth discrepancy (excuse the pun), so the first step is making women feel comfortable entering these conversations.  

What needs to be done to help to empower women around their money and savings? 

It sounds corny but with knowledge comes power. Understanding how to grow our money can be so empowering. Not only does it improve your confidence, but it also leads to financial independence, flexibility and choice. It gives women more control over their lives. It gives them freedom.

There is a level of self-responsibility too, we need to encourage each other to learn and step outside of gender and societal norms. We hope that by having these conversations we start to see generation shifts. We want to see women freely sharing knowledge, empowering each other to be financially independent and essentially reach equality. 

Tell me about how The Curve has been working to do that. 

Vic has been in the finance industry for over a decade and for the same amount of time, she has seen the women around her struggle with confidence when it comes to their finances. No one seemed to even know what a term deposit was, let alone inflation or interest rates. 

It was a total blind spot for all of our friends and because the existing information was so masculine, boring and hard to understand, most of them remained uninterested or confused. We set up The Curve to change that. To make talking about money more interesting, more fun and hopefully even a little entertaining. We’re big advocates of having a laugh while simultaneously educating because, honestly if something is boring, not many people are going to pay attention. 

The Curve represents modern women. The woman who works for her money, who wants to spend it in whatever way she sees fit and who doesn’t need to rely on a male counterpart to plan or live in line with her morals and desires. 

We try to open up conversations whether that be on our podcast, or on our socials, in a way that is inclusive for ALL women. We wanted The Curve to feel like a safe space for women to get investment-savvy, without the noise and confusion. 

Tell us about the Savings Calculator you created with Audi. How does it work?

It’s so cool we love it! Anyone can use it and it’s such a great start if you want to save for something but have no idea what that process looks like. Often big, audacious goals feel unachievable, but when broken down into monthly payments and you’re given a timeline as to how long it will take then all of a sudden it’s less overwhelming and is actually an achievable goal. We also wanted to show people that if they invest their savings they can reach their goals so much faster, so incorporating that element into the calculator was really important.

You literally type in what you’re saving for, whether that be a holiday, a car, a wedding (anything you want) when you want to buy it buy and whether or not you plan on investing those savings to grow them quicker, and then it spits out how long much you’ll need to contribute monthly to get there. VERY HELPFUL TOOL! We’ve also created a downloadable resource with a whole lot of tips and tricks to help you reach those savings goals faster which is super helpful if you see the monthly number and still don’t really know where to start. 

Alongside the Savings Calculator, what are some easy-to-implement tips and tricks for saving that people can use once they’ve set their goal? 

Visualising your goal can help in a massive way. It creates motivation and means you are less likely to stray off course. And be specific. Changing the narrative from “I want to save some money” to “I want to save $50,000 in 5 years to buy an Audi” has a profound effect on our ambition and drive (really on fire with the puns).  

What would you say to someone who has always felt like those more expensive items (like a new car) are out of reach? 

This Savings Calculator is a great place to start. You can see how much you have to save each month to achieve your goal – however aspirational it might be! Then you can work from there to see if it’s achievable with your current situation and how much you’re keen to invest to help you achieve that goal. The bigger the savings goal (or the more expensive the car), the longer it might take you to achieve – but it is never completely out of reach!

Why is the fully electric Audi e-tron your dream car? Have you loved driving it over the summer?

I have LOVED it. We have always been huge fans of the Audi brand. It’s beautiful, and aspirational, just like our community of women! The e-tron is spacious, luxurious and so powerful with its fully-electric motor. Vic’s favourite unique feature is definitely the tightening of the seatbelts ever so slightly as you drive away, it feels like a friendly little hug. Soph has so many favourite features, she’s used to driving with headphones to listen to music (not that cute). The sound system in the Audi e-tron is insane, being able to talk on the phone while driving and not having to put the keys in the ignition! It’s amazing. 

More importantly, it has saved us amazing amounts of money on petrol (and we are all about saving $$). When you combine that with the positive environmental effects which couldn’t be more important, considering the current state of the world right now, it’s an absolute dream to drive. 

This competition is now closed.

Culture

We talk to author Trent Dalton on his dark childhood, finding light between the cracks, and the girl who saved him
Meet Kura Kai, the local charity addressing food poverty in Auckland’s high schools
Ain’t no party like an Ayrburn party! See inside Ayrburn’s inaugural Winter Ball