Our Winter Cover Star, Jess Hong photographed at Ayrburn

Heading South for the holidays? No trip is complete without a visit to the newest jewel in the region’s crown — Ayrburn

If you’ve not yet visited what is being touted as New Zealand’s finest new hospitality precinct — Ayrburn, located in Central Otago’s Arrowtown region — then given that ski season is upon us, you have no excuse. The sprawling rural precinct, part of Winton’s ever-expanding portfolio of exceptional developments, features three restaurants, two bars, a gelateria, and a private members club, along with a number of exceptional event venues. It also offered itself as the impeccable backdrop of this issue’s cover shoot with Hollywood rising star Jess Hong. To help you navigate the expansive offerings, we’ve devised a situational guide for your next visit.

The Woolshed, photographed by Anson Smart

For a long lunch or dinner with the family and/or friends…

The Woolshed is the place to be — Ayrburn’s casual, bistro-style eatery that promises day-to-night fare that the whole family will enjoy wholeheartedly. Here, the philosophy is simple: quality reigns supreme, which means you’ll find delicious, uncomplicated food that is utterly enjoyable, served in a classically elegant setting. The menu caters to everyone, from Roman-style stone-baked pizzas, typically Southern shoestring fries with chicken salt, and The Woolshed cheeseburger for the kids, to exceptional sharing plates and hearty, comforting dishes that utilise the finest meats from nearby farms, freshly caught fish and seasonal seafood, and the freshest local produce on offer, for, well, everyone else.

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The Burr Bar, photographed by Anson Smart

For a rowdy après ski session…

Post a taxing day on the slopes, all one really craves is a cosy spot in which to take the edge off (and dull the aches and pains), and to fill your stomach after a day of physical exertion. At Ayrburn’s quietly luxurious (but unapologetically convivial) watering hole, The Burr Bar, you’ll find both. Capture the last of the day’s sun on the terrace, warmed by the enormous fire, or head inside to original historic stone walls adorned with metal and wooden shelving packed with all manner of libations, and of course, given Ayrburn’s impeccable culinary team, utterly divine (and yes, comforting) food — expertly crafted to pair with the drinks on offer. From lamb and pork meatballs with shaved Grana Padano, to green olive, anchovy and guindilla pepper gildas, to crisp artichoke with romesco, pickled shallots and cheddar, and much, more. There’s something to compliment anything you opt to imbibe. And trust us, the options are plentiful. 

The Manure Room, right image photographed by Anson Smart

For a wine flight, leisurely aperitivo, or late night drink…

Touted (by Ayrburn) as the perfect place to “Drink some wine and talk some sh*t.” The Manure Room — Ayrburn’s atmospheric wine bar and tasting room, is the place to go to do just that. Here, guests are invited to immerse themselves in the enchanting world of Ayrburn wine. A space perfectly suited to enjoying a leisurely afternoon with friends over a flight of wine, or to enjoy a few (too many) exceptional cocktails and a spread of delectable fare, The Manure Room’s cosy, sumptuous space makes settling in for the afternoon far too easy. Or, if the sun’s out, there’s nowhere else to be but on the sprawling deck out front, perfectly positioned to take in the stunning surrounds while enjoying a taste of the local landscape via the curated wine flights on offer. The Manure Room’s inventive menu couldn’t be more perfectly suited to the vibe and location, where tasting plates and boards of cured meats are available alongside delectable morsels such as oysters with Ayrburn rosé jelly, chicken liver pâté on brioche served with caramelised onion and chive, and classic beef tartare with bloody mary dressing and crisp potato.

The Barrel Room

For a spectacular dinner with your finest companions…

Transport yourself into sumptuous surroundings at Ayrburn’s intimate bar and restaurant, The Barrel Room. Here, stepping inside feels like entering a hidden world — the entrance features a velvet festooned bar complete with a grand piano just begging to be played, while further back, the dining room is lined with 56 ageing wine barrels, setting the stage for the unique ambience. The impeccably curated interior marries cosy, thoughtful design with a sense of unparalleled privacy and sophistication. The Barrel Room is perfect for any occasion; and can also be booked for private events with the ability to host up to 50 guests for intimate, seated, candle-lit soirees, or many more for lively late-night gatherings, and everything in between.

The Dairy

Let the kids entertain themselves as you while the afternoon away…

With numerous areas for children to explore and play free range across Ayrburn’s play areas and grounds, The Dairy also offers hand-churned ice cream and real New Zealand milkshakes. Providing a welcome reprieve for adults enjoying a leisurely lunch.



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