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Akaroa Restaurants: 18 reviews and 26 photos

Historic hotel - Akaroa

Historic hotel

Duvauchelle Hotel: Only a true trencherman ....

... could hope to finish the enormous meals served at the Duvauchelle Hotel. This is tasty, substantial cafe food - nothing grand but well cooked standards such as steaks, fried fish, tender ribs, hearty pies, home-made soups as well as a few international flavours - good, rib-sticking stuff served with a smile in a friendly local pub atmosphere.

There's a big restaurant area with views of the bay that I'm sure fills up at weekends and on holidays but we were there on a quiet mid-week night and that area was deserted so we chose to eat at a table in the bar - much more congenial.

The hotel is an historic old building - one of the very first hotels in the South Island (maybe even the first) - a long, low wooden building on the main road into Akaroa. Walk around the back and you'll find the very attractive looking waterfront accommodation units - this could be a good place to stay.

Favorite Dish: Do you know - I can't remember what I had (definite senior moment there) except it was good. I do remember one of our party being served the biggest plate of ribs I've seen outside the US of A, and he finished every last stickyfingered one of them and sat back with a beatific smile on his face.

Address: State Highway 75, Duvauchelle

Comparison: about average

Directions: Duvauchelle is 10km before Akaroa

Phone: +64 3 304 5803

Price: US$21-30

Rating: 4

Theme: Local

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Apr 4, 2011
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A new name - Akaroa

A new name

The Little Bistro: New name, same high standards

Fresh white paint, a tempting blackboard menu and a new name greeted us when when turned up at a favourite Akaroa restaurant on our most recent visit. What had been "C'est la Vie" - an Akaroa institution, reknowned almost as much for its funky decor as its delicious food - had transformed itself with a stylish makeover into "The Little Bistro".

A new owner/chef, a new look, a new name maybe - but still the same high standards of food and service I'm happy to say. The dishes that sounded so tempting on the blackboard by the front door lived up to all the menu had promised - with good wine to match. All in all a great evening. Looking set to keep up the standards set by its predecessor, even if it hasn't followed the Akaroa tradition of using a Frenchified "Le P'tit " in its name, The Little Bistro won the same top marks from us as C'est La Vie had always done.

Favorite Dish: There's just one word for the meal we ate at The Little Bistro - delicious! Fresh, local ingredients and great cooking to suit the season is always a winner.

Two soups - one made from flavoursome roasted kumara and root vegetables - autumn's bounty in a bowl - the other a creamy chowder packed with seafood fresh from the waters of the South Pacific - a great start to dinner on a rainy night with the first nip of winter in the air.

Main courses followed - rib-eye steak for MrL , a blue cheese-spiked vegetable risotto for me - both cooked to exactly the right state of melting tenderness. No room for dessert, though the local farm berries with vanilla bean icecream was more than a little tempting. Next time ....

Address: 33 Rue Lauvaud Akaroa

Comparison: more expensive than average

Directions: Open for dinner from 6 until late and for lunch on Saturday and Sunday in summer. Closed Tuesday
With only 24 places, booking is most advisable

Phone: 03 304 7314

Price: US$31-40

Rating: 4

Theme: French

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Apr 15, 2010
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