There is a deep sense of community at Arbour. Liz Buttimore works alongside her partner Bradley Hornby (above) to develop collaborations with local growers and artisans, championing the very best that Marlborough has to offer. It’s that sense of place and celebration of the local that sets this restaurant apart. The decor is simple and welcoming, cosy and comfortable. With a small menu, the best value is to be had on the “just feed me” options of three, four, five or many courses. Hornby has a wonderful sense of the importance of texture and balance in his cooking – a dish of surf clams, wild mussels, potato textures and curry oil demonstrates that ably. Service, led by Buttimore, is friendly and engaging, and the staff clearly know the menu and fervidly parochial wine list inside out. Buttimore radiates a warmth and knowledge that combine to deliver a special experience from start to finish.
36 Godfrey Rd, Blenheim, 03 572 7989, arbour.co.nz Dinner Tues-sat, mains $36-$39
IN BRIEF Local-focused, modern cuisine from people who care