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Relais & Châteaux Winter Dinners in New Zealand

June 22, 2013 Lifestyle No Comments Email Email

This winter New Zealand’s finest lodges bring travellers a calendar of extraordinary culinary events and cooking classes to delight the senses and sharpen the skills.

Relais & Châteaux is often described as the gourmet lover’s guide to the world’s  most beautiful and intimate hotels and restaurants, each one with fine cuisine and celebrated chefs at its core.

Established in France in 1954, the Association’s mission is to spread its unique “art de vivre” across the globe by selecting outstanding properties with a truly unique character and sense of the local “terroir”.

This winter some of the finest food and wine experiences await in intimate environments with outstanding personal service, in the world’s most magnificent settings.

Winemaker’s dinner with Gibbston Valley wines – HUKA LODGE – 6 July

Spend an evening with Christopher Keys, head winemaker at outstanding Otago winery Gibbston Valley, over a superb five-course dinner by Huka Lodge Executive Chef Michel Louws. This event is free to guests who book Huka’s attractive autumn-winter rates.

Bastille Day Dinner – THE FARM AT CAPE KIDNAPPERS – 13 July

To celebrate Bastille Day on the 14th, join French chef Nic Poelaert from Brooks of Melbourne, who will create a Gallic dinner matched to Louis Roederer Champagne and Joseph Drouhin wines, included as part of the lodge’s special winter food and wine rates.

Celebrate the Art of Living Weekend – HUKA LODGE – 3 August

A fabulous weekend of gourmet food, fine wine and passions with special previews from fine wine aficionado John Hawkesby, from Louis Vuitton on The Art of Packing, from Hartfield boutique jewellers Rebecca Dryden and Margaret Foley, and from Huka Lodge Executive Chef Michel Louws on the secrets of fine cuisine. The activities are free for guests who book autumn-winter rates.

The Ultimate New Zealand Pinot Dinner – THE LODGE AT KAURI CLIFFS – 17 August

Winemakers Blair Walter and Ant Mackenzie of Felton Road and Dry River will present their sublime wines at a special dinner prepared by Kauri Cliffs’ Group Executive Chef Dale Gartland. Special winter rates apply. 

Truffle Dinner with James Stapley – WHARE KEA LODGE – 17 August

Making the most of truffle season in the Central Otago region, guests will enjoy a superb 10 course degustation. Guests who stay 3 nights or more can enjoy a cooking class with Stapley, who has his own organic gardens in Wanaka. Throughout winter, guests may also book a 2.5 hour class highlighting modern braising techniques for quality local Cardrona lamb and venison.

La Scuola Italiana Cooking Class – OTAHUNA LODGE – 23 & 25 August

This class will span the sophisticated and the rustic flavours of northern Italy – the home of Otahuna’s sous chef Filippo Moriggi. Learn to cook pastas or lighter staples such as panzanella, the insider tricks to preparing cured meats at home and homemade gelato and panna cotta. Lunch will be matched with Italian wines.

A Taste of Asia Cooking Class – OTAHUNA LODGE – 13 & 15 September

Executive Chef Jimmy McIntyre’s passion for Asian food has developed through his travels through Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and Singapore. The class will present a new menu of aromatic curries, popular street foods and dishes featuring exotic spices and herbs including galangal, wasabi, Myoga ginger, Vietnamese mint and Kaffir lime grown on the estate. Classes include a tour of the house and kitchen gardens and a meal with wine.


To book a Relais & Châteaux hotel or restaurant anywhere in the world phone:

1300 121 341 – for calls in Australia

0800 540 008 – for calls in New Zealand

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