Thursday, 22 August 2019


Whitianga chef in top five of Best NZ Ora King Dish Awards

Whitianga chef in top five of Best NZ Ora King Dish Awards

Piko piko, edible sand, wasabi and seafood foam, lime and fennel custard and roast maple seed quinoa are just some of the more unusual ingredients in the 2014 Ōra King Awards finalist dishes. 

The finalists for the awards have been announced with the participation of regional restaurants a key feature in the second year of the Ōra’s. Finalists in the Best New Zealand Ōra King Dish category include two from the Bay of Plenty, one from  the Coromandel and one from Queenstown.  

The annual Ōra King Awards (the Ōra’s) recognise outstanding contributions from chefs working with Ōra King - New Zealand King Salmon’s premium foodservice brand produced exclusively for fine dining restaurants in New Zealand and overseas.

The five finalists for Best Ōra King Dish in New Zealand are -

  • Ben Batterbury - True South Dining Room, The Rees Hotel Queenstown for sous vide Ōra King salmon, swede and kumara pickled ginger purée, roast maple seed quinoa, apple lime fluid gel, pickled radish, smoked fishcake, enoki mushrooms.
  • Chetan Pangam - One80, Copthorne Hotel Wellington for Ōra King salmon gravalax, blow torched miso belly, compressed cucumber, edible sand, beetroot fluid gel, dill mustard crème fraiche and crispy salmon skin.
  • Simon Green - Halo restaurant at Trinity Wharf Tauranga for cured Ōra King salmon with white bean purée, pistachio and almond granola and wasabi and seafood foam.
  • Stephen Barry - Mount Bistro, Mount Maunganui for steamed cutlet of Ōra King salmon encased in smoked salmon mousse with honey, balsamic and blackcurrant jus, radical kumara, baby fennel, lime and fennel custard and potato crisp.
  • Sam Goslin - The Lost Spring, Whitianga for “Kaimoana Ora Kaimoana Aroha” (live seafood, love seafood) comprising horopito, seasoned seared Ōra King salmon served with crunchy piko piko, kina velouté and watakirihi pesto.

There were 70 entries in the Best New Zealand Ōra King Dish category.

The criteria for the best dish awards include appealing and polished presentation, thoughtful flavour combinations, well executed technique and the entrant’s participation in the social media campaign devised around the awards. This year diner reviews of stand-out dishes were also incorporated in the awards.



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The Mercury Bay Informer is a highly popular community newspaper, based in Whitianga. The paper is distributed throughout the Coromandel Peninsula, coast to coast from Thames to north of Colville.