Tauranga is one of the fastest growing cities in New Zealand and consequently there are always new and exciting restaurants and bars opening up.
In downtown Tauranga on the Strand and in the heart of Mount Maunganui there are a plethora of options when it comes to eating both locally grown food as well as international cuisine.
The Strand features a brand new section of restaurants and bars that have replaced buildings that were demolished after being listed as earthquake prone and requiring strict council laws. In their place is The Phoenix, which is home to Monteiths beer as well as a mouth-watering brunch, lunch and dinner menu. Considered the busiest of all bars and restaurants on the Strand, The Phoenix offers several weekly rituals, including Thursday night beer and burger deals, the Friday knock off beer, wine and pizza deal as well as Saturday night live music.
Right next to The Phoenix is Macau which provides a new level of contemporary Asian cuisine as well as an exquisitely refined cocktail and wine menu. They also offer banquets for large groups.
Directly behind The Phoenix is Comida, a popular Tapas bar that boasts a relaxing atmosphere with all day sun. Their tapas feature imported Spanish ingredients and also combine the finest and freshest New Zealand produce. They also have over 60 wines to choose from.
Just a few doors down the road is Brooklyn Patio & Eatery, a wonderfully designed bar and bistro that features an upstairs location overlooking the Tauranga harbour front. Its crispy pizzas with delicious toppings cooked in their impressive stone pizza oven are the talk of the town. It is an ideal spot to enjoy a quiet afternoon drink with a friend or for a larger gathering.
Brooklyn Patio & Eatery
Located in Bethlehem, Mills Reef Winery & Restaurant was established in 1989 and features an award winning 150 seat restaurant, providing a wonderful ambience for a-la-carte dining, weddings, functions and conferences.
The Strand is littered with eating and drinking options and also features Amphora Café and Bar, Cornerstone, India Today, Mexica, Volare Restaurant and Bar, Zeytin and Takara Japanese Restaurant.
Mount Maunganui Restaurants & Bars
A 10 minute drive across the Tauranga Bridge will take you to the vibrant downtown area of coastal township Mount Maunganui, which offers even more choices and features a distinctly village-feel with a cutting-edge style that is similar to Melbourne.
Flour and Water Eatery opened in December, 2013 and focuses on fresh wood-fired seasonal produce, while nearby a la carte eatery The Drawing Room serves up exquisite, wonderfully-presented food.
The Drawing Room
One of the busiest restaurants in Mount Maunganui is Barrio Brothers, a authentic Mexican restaurant that serves up deliciously fresh food with little wait. It boasts a fantastic atmosphere.
If you are looking for a truly local experience then you’ll have to visit Astrolabe Brew Bar. This is the place to be for a cold drink in the sun in a large outdoor lounge-like area or enjoy a relaxed bar meal in the 70s retro indoor dining area.
Astrolabe Brew Bar
Other popular restaurants and bars of note in Mount Maunganui include the newly added Pizza Library, Satori Lounge, La Barca, La Barca Italian restaurant, Imbibe Bar & Restaurant, The Mount Brewing Company, Taste of Asia, Mamma Mia Ristorante Italiano and Tay Street Beach Café.
If you are planning on hosting a dinner party and need party catering, get in touch with El Mono Loco, who have a professional private chefwho can take care of everything for you. They also specialise in event catering Auckland, Tauranga and Hamilton-wide and offer a full mobile catering service, fully operated from their fully-contained food truck.