North Island's West Coast Restaurants

Throughout western North Island, provincial city restaurants and small, tourist-town cafés feature an overall sophistication you might not expect away from major urban centers: think wholesome and hearty fare, local organic produce, good espresso and loose-leaf teas, high-quality New Zealand wines, plus local craft beers. Counter food is generally fresh salads, paninis, filled rolls, sweet or savory pies, and homemade soups.

Dinner menus in the higher-end restaurants include the chef's latest creations using high-quality New Zealand eye fillet of beef (beef tenderloin), fish, lamb racks, pork fillets, and chicken. The best chefs change menus regularly to focus on fresh regional and seasonal ingredients. You will also find Indian, Thai, Malaysian, Japanese, Mexican, Turkish, and Italian restaurants, even in smaller centers. "Smart-casual" is about as formal as attire gets.

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  • 1. The Shack

    $$ | Café

    Provenance is important at The Shack, a buzzing corner café that is truly local and consistently good. Surfers—who come for great local espresso...Read More

  • 2. Orca Restaurant and Bar

    $$$ | New Zealand

    This waterside restaurant has big windows and the best views in Raglan—when orca swim into the harbor, you can see them from your table. Brunch...Read More

  • 3. Rock-It Kitchen

    $$ | New Zealand

    Occupying a 100-year old shearing shed, the funky, rustic Rock-it serves wholesome Kiwi fare and local Raglan Roast coffee. Try the beef sliders...Read More

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