Exuding an elevated yet welcoming vibe, Beni is the newest Japanese restaurant in Auckland that has caught our attention. Located on Auckland’s paved Fort Street in the building that most recently housed craft chocolatiers Miann, Beni was founded by Jonathan Yo of Malaysian eatery Sim’s Kitchen, a longstanding Onehunga favourite.
Beni’s modern offering is inspired by a culmination of Yo’s hospitality experience (he has been working in the Auckland scene since he was 16) and his recent travels to the ritzy Ginza district of Tokyo, famed for its upmarket dining establishments.
Here, Yo has created a place for everyone — Beni is just as suited to long business lunches as it is for romantic evenings or celebratory dinners. The menu hero is Wagyu beef (in the form of rib and eye fillet steaks). However, if you desire something more adventurous, you should order the Wagyu beef tataki. This dish is a refreshing salad of sorts, featuring thin slices of lightly seared beef with kiwifruit and a spicy miso sauce, combining the best of sweet, sour and savoury flavours.
As with all good food, Beni’s impeccably presented dishes are designed to be enjoyed with wine. Alongside well-known local names, we recommend the ‘Koshu’ from the heritage Japanese winery Château Mercian, a dry white drop that best complements sashimi or nigiri sushi.
Pleasing even the most discerning palate and located in the heart of Auckland city, Beni offers a beautiful lunchtime or evening dining experience. We highly recommend paying a visit and taking your time to fully indulge in Yo’s sophisticated take on contemporary Japanese fare.
Beni opening hours:
Tuesday-Thursday, 11am-2.30pm, 5.30pm-10pm
Friday-Saturday 11am-2.30pm, 5.30-10.30pm
57 Fort Street
09 948 8857