Chef Ben Bayly and owner Michael Dearth have seemingly boundless energy for the rigours of the hospo business. Bayly turns out food that’s assured, creative and downright delicious; Dearth oversees a restaurant that runs like a well-oiled machine, complete with fantastic staff and a killer wine list. The Grove’s a fine-diner, though its location in the heart of the city means it’s as popular with the business crowd as it is with couples and groups celebrating. It’s degustation-only, with beautifully composed progressions of intricate dishes – the likes of ash-darkened tapioca crackers with salmon roe segueing to grass-fed wagyu beef hangar and rib with chimmichurri, fig and liquorice. The long, narrow room has a comfortable and welcoming lounge bar area at the front, while in the dining area, wooden floors, pristine white linen and rich artworks create a warm-toned, luxurious space.
St Patricks Square, Wyndham St, City, 09 368 4129, thegroverestaurant.co.nz Lunch Thurs-fri, dinner Mon-sat, degustations $99-$145
Beautiful degustations in a luxurious, welcoming space IN BRIEF
Grass-fed wagyu hanger, long-cooked short rib, chimichurri & sunchokes cooked in hay