It’s only been open three weeks, and every night since, it has been full of people keen to get a taste of the islands. Kai Pasifika is the brainchild of the celebrity chef Robert Oliver, best known for a stint on My Kitchen Rules and previous winner of the ‘Best Cookbook in the World’ award. The Pacific-style eatery is the first of its kind and a welcome addition to the city it seems.
The menu is simple, boasting flavours from many of the Polynesian islands, including Fiji, Samoa and Tonga. The fare is fresh — as in, flown in direct from the islands fresh — with choices from Cook Island-style raw fish through to Polynesian brown sugar chicken roasted in soy and passionfruit, it’s a flavourful affair. But the focus is not only what’s on the plate — though an extremely important element — it’s the cultural identity and pride that Kai Pasifika wants visitors to experience. The team have a relationship with Women in Business, a Samoan collective that aims to provide women with an income for their families. It’s also a way to activate trade links between the Pacific Islands and New Zealand and educate and employ Pacific Island and Māori youth here in New Zealand.
From today, the doors will open for lunch from 12pm till late, seven days a week. And come June, a brunch menu will make an entrance on the weekends. Furthermore, the Chefs from the Pacific series will launch on 8th June, with chef Dora Rossi, of Samoan-Italian heritage, offering a special dinner.
3 Mount Eden Road
(09) 309 3740