Britomart garden-to-fork eatery Ortolana will be popping some champagne this week after being named in the world's top 50 restaurants by culture magazine Monocle.
The magazine's annual awards veer away from restaurants obsessed with foam, emulsions and dry ice, instead focussing on places that are "consistently good and up-and-comers that have the ingredients to be great restaurants for decades to come".
Ortolana came in at number 21 on this year's list, making it the only Auckland restaurant to receive the honour. They join newcomers from Honolulu, Adelaide, Warsaw and Bangkok. Top honours were taken out by Tokyo's Cignale Enoteca, an 18-seat restaurant melding Japanese and Italian cuisines.
Monocle said of Ortolana, "Tucked away in downtown Auckland, Ortolana is a brick-and-timber pavilion with steel-framed windows that open onto a small courtyard. Half the tables are outside - there are rugs for when the weather's brisk - while inside there are linen-covered banquettes and timber tables. Seasonal produce comes from the owners' farm and chef Jo Pearson makes even the familiar exciting."
Found in the centre of the Britomart precinct, the restaurant has a European-inspired menu which includes handmade pasta dishes. In line with their name (translated to 'market gardener') a large focus is put on using locally sourced and seasonal ingredients, much of which comes from parent company Hipgroup's farm in Kumeu.
For those wanting a taste of Ortolana, throughout the month of August they're offering a choice between their handmade beef short rib agnolotti pasta or organic chicken cotoletta, and a gelato stick from Milse, for just $25. The offer is part of Auckland Restaurant Month.