Archives for March 2022


There are an estimated 10,000 places to eat in New Zealand. A surprisingly impressive number of these places have the added bonus of telling a tale, being a part of New Zealand’s history by virtue of their location or age.

Built on whalebone foundations in 1847, The Gables in Russell in the Bay of Islands, is New Zealand’s oldest operating restaurant. At the time it was opened the area was known as “The Hell Hole of the Pacific”. Before converting to a restaurant, The Gables was a brothel, a shop, bakehouse, and Salvation Army Boys’ Home. With kauri panelling, open fires, original maps, prints and early photographs, it is now listed as a heritage building. I have eaten there and noted the atmosphere was heavy with its colourful history. It had an almost serene feel which I put down to the inherent sophistication created by that very history. read more