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Serving up a menu of new events in the Heart of the City this August

Press release
Wednesday 17 Jul 2019

Heart of the City announces new one-night-only culinary experiences as part of American Express Restaurant Month 2019.

The city centre will host a series of six mouth-watering one-off dining experiences this August as part of American Express Restaurant Month, led by Heart of the City.

Adding to an already packed calendar of events and offers, including special set-menus from more than 100 restaurants and the return of the popular Chef Dining Series, the six new one-night-only events highlight the unique food experiences that can only be had in the city centre.

Held on various dates throughout August, they range from an afternoon of craft beer and food matching in Federal Street and a freshly foraged dinner at O’Connell Street Bistro to a metropolitan mid-winter barbecue with lively entertainment and an extravagant seafood and rosé luncheon overlooking the sparkling Waitemata.

Heart of the City Chief Executive Viv Beck says this year’s American Express Restaurant Month events are designed to encourage people to discover what makes the city centre’s dining scene unique. 

“The variety and caliber of the events on offer in August is a reflection of the city centre’s diverse dining scene. Whether you’re a gourmet food connoisseur or simply curious about different cuisines, these special dining events are the perfect excuse to get together with friends and experience new tastes, cooking techniques and international flavours.”

Sweet Dreams

Friday 2 August 2019 - $55 per person

Kicking off August on a very sweet note is a dessert only, 6-course, decadent degustation menu. Think irresistible velvety dark chocolate, melt in your mouth meringue, whipped and nutty nougat and delicate light mousse.  Taking place at DeBretts Kitchen, in celebration of their 10-year anniversary, this late supper dining event is serving up gastronomic encounters of the sugary kind.

A Behemoth Day Out on Federal Street

Saturday 17 August 2019 - $65 per person

Three top eateries. Six great brews. It is going to be a behemoth day out on Federal Street. For one glorious winter afternoon, experience sophisticated beer and food pairings designed by the kitchen teams at HUAMI, Gusto at the Grand and Bellota by Peter Gordon.  Meander between venues, savouring the hops and malty undertones of Behemoth beer whilst being guided through each carefully curated Chinese, Italian and Spanish bar snack match. This is a chance to gain insights into the art of beer and food matching while mingling with like-minded souls in the greatest of bar settings.


Friday 23 August 2019 - $195 per person

Discover a new appreciation for the wild foods of Aotearoa at this unique dining experience. Seasoned forager Riki Bennett of Te Arawa and Ngāti Porou descent brings his unique understanding of forest food and medicinal herbs (rongoā) to the table. Collaborating with James Beck of Hawkes Bay’s two-hatted Bistronomy and Mark Southon of O’Connell Street Bistro, this will be an exquisite 5-course dinner made with freshly foraged ingredients and expertly matched with an award-winning selection of wines.

Fire Me Up

Saturday 24 August 2019 - $60 per person

Don’t let winter get you down. A mid-winter barbeque party taking place right in the heart of the city will fire up even the coldest of winter evenings. Tucked away up a hidden flight of stairs off Federal Street, The Glass Goose is home to a central city garden oasis that is the perfect setting for an evening of soul-warming barbecue food and live music. A team of skilled chefs will be serving up a selection of flame grilled treats, while party-goers dance the night away.

In the Pink at Harbourside

Sunday 25 August 2019 - $95 per person

Pescatarians rejoice. One of the city’s favourite waterfront restaurants, Harbourside Ocean Bar Grill, is putting an exciting twist on a luscious Sunday seafood lunch. While there are some classic white wine and fish pairings, this event will instead see several exquisite varietals of wine of the moment, rosé, matched to each fresh seafood course. Explore texture, taste and aroma with each delicious fusion, created by experts and perfectly complemented with stunning ocean views.


Saturday 31 August 2019 - $160 per person

Step into Auckland’s most stylish and chic soiree for one night only. Start with the allure and elegance of Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Hotel, indulging in Bollinger on arrival and an exquisite selection of hors d'oeuvres prepared by Lava Dining in Sofitel’s Marina Terrace, before enjoying wine and canapés in more of The Sofitel’s exclusive settings. Then in true 5-star style, chauffeured Aston Martins will transfer guests to SO/ Auckland Hotel to finish the decadent evening with an arrival drink at  MIXO, where you have the option to lounge and enjoy the vibrant atmosphere or head up to the rooftop bar for its spectacular outlook over Auckland city. This really is the LuxeLife.

For more information on American Express Restaurant Month 2019 including a full list of participating restaurants, menus, and calendar of events visit

Tickets for American Express Restaurant Month events are available to purchase from iTICKET

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Notes to Editors:

For media interview opportunities, pictures, chef bios or further information please contact Eleven using the contact details at the bottom of this page.

Heart of the City is Auckland’s city centre business association, which champions a successful centre for business and a vibrant place to live, work and visit. Heart of the City has been bringing American Express Restaurant Month to Auckland’s city centre since 2011.

Lemongrass Productions is the Official Event Manager of American Express Restaurant Month.

The event is proudly supported by headline sponsor American Express plus Lake Chalice, Negociants NZ, S. Pellegrino & Acqua Panna and official beer partner Behemoth Brewing Company, along with YOU Travel who are helping to bring The Chef Dining Series back for 2019. 


For further information, please contact:

Eleven for Heart of the City
Ian Benet
M 022 169 5443
Eleven for Heart of the City

Isabella Ramdhanie
M 021 162 1138