Best places to wine and dine

Food & Wine

Welcome to wine and dine country – if you’re looking for things to do in Hawkes Bay, exploring our wealth of world class wineries, cafes, and restaurants is high on the list. Here at Amuri Villas we are located in the middle of everything from historic wineries (making wine famous the world over) to vibrant cafes. Each establishment takes advantage of the local produce and amazing growing climate of the area, with stunning results. See our list below for our recommendations, and Bon Appetit!

Clearview Estate, Te Awanga

For a wine tasting session with true experts that are passionate about the craft of winemaking, you can’t go past Clearview Estate. Paired with one of the excellent platters, it’s not a bad way to while away an hour or two! This is a friendly, family-operated working winery, so it’s authentic and beautifully rustic without any ostentatiousness. You can sit indoors or outdoors next to the vineyards.

Mister D

Mister D in Napier is sleek and cool, a bit rock and roll, created by two local couples. You can order food using fresh local produce, from the cabinet or the kitchen whether you’re after breakfast, lunch or dinner (the big breakfast or the duck risotto come well recommended). Mister D’s is famous for its donuts, made fresh to order – these hot delicacies are injected with filling of your choice (e.g. custard, chocolate, Manuka vodka jelly). Delish.

Craggy Range

World class Craggy Range was born in 1993 to be a family legacy – the owners newly it built from the ground up, in a great spot with Te Mata Peak rising up behind it. Craggy Range consists of a vineyard, winery, accommodation and restaurant. The restaurant onsite is sophisticated yet warm and cosy, and the food is award-winning (with great wine matching too of course by knowledgeable, friendly sommeliers) – some say they’ve had their best meal at this place!

Emporium in the Masonic Hotel

Embrace your inner art deco muse and go all out at the Emporium Eatery and Bar, or the Emporium Lounge, inside the Masonic Hotel. Think crushed velvets and vibrant silk brocades in gold and turquoise, plus art deco paraphernalia adding to the atmosphere. They do really good cocktails and beautiful meals.

Mission Estate Winery and Church Road

Mission Estate Winery is New Zealand’s oldest winery, it’s a must to visit these parklike grounds, vineyard, manicured gardens and underground barrel room. You’ll get a sense of the long history of the place with gorgeous photos throughout the winery while you do a tasting with the knowledgeable, passionate staff. Afterwards, go for a meal at the restaurant where the chef does a great job with both taste and portion size.

Church Road is just a minute’s drive down the road and is a chance to visit another historic winery which is on par with Mission Estate in terms of quality of experience. And a great spot for a quiet rosé in the park-like grounds out the back. On summer Sundays you will often find local musicians playing live to help you get your groove on.

Pipi Cafe

Pipi Café in Havelock North is a very well-known gem, for its completely pink décor, lively atmosphere, unpretentiousness and its mouth-watering pizza made with authentic Italian dough and topped with fresh local produce.

Alessandro’s

Alessandro’s provides another chance to have authentic Italian pizzas in Havelock North – and by all accounts these ones taste just like you’ve stepped into Italy. There is also fantastic pasta, and don’t pass up the opportunity to try a dessert pizza topped with lashings of Nutella, salted caramel banana and shredded coconut.

Hastings Distillers

Hastings Distillers is a special place worth visiting – created by passionate couple Kate Galloway and David Ramonteu, it focuses on organic extracts of local botanicals to make sophisticated, unique spirits and liqueurs. There’s a brief menu with good food, but the focus is really on the gin and aperitif – there’s also the option of a tasting flight, which you can just walk in to try.

Fun Buns

Who doesn’t like a fresh, hot, flavourful bao bun! These are the staple at a cosy little Hastings restaurant called Fun Buns, as well as a whole lot of other delicious accompaniments such as Korean fried chicken and dumplings. With colourful paper parasols suspended from the ceilings, colourful artworks and great cocktails, it makes for a fun evening out with friends.
We hope you have some stellar dining experiences during your stay. Of course, you’re always welcome to bring back takeout or fresh produce to prepare in your own private suites here at Amuri Villas.

 

Image Credit: Kirsten Simcox