"Service with a Snarl" Kekerengu by kiwigeezer1

Kekerengu Travel Guide: 10 reviews and 20 photos

What's wrong with the service industry in NZ?

The expression "service in New Zealand" used to be a bit of an oxymoron.
Fortunately this has changed of late and continues to improve.
However there are still some remaining outposts of the "we don't give a rat's arse" style of hospitality service that personified New Zealand twenty years ago. The Store at Kekerengu is one such place.

Don't ask for water...

Our visit to The Store at Kekerengu was the culmination of a long overdue weekend away together sans children. We'd had a brilliant time, watched a rugby international and decided to round it all off with lunch at Kekerengu.
After lining up for some time (they were rather busy to be fair) I ordered soup for my wife and a chicken/brie pie for myself.
I then rather foolishly asked for water. It became apparant at this point that water is not something they 'do' at Kekerengu. This was reinforced by the matronly maitre-de announcing to me (and the rest of the restaurant) that "we don't give out water". They do however conform to other restaurant protocols as most dish prices were the equivalent of a good restaurant main. Thus chastened (and feeling very foolish) I retreated to our table to wait for our meals.

How was the food?

The meals arrived in good time. The reason for the speed became apparent as I attempted to cut into my pie, which resisted very gamely any attempts to divulge it's contents. The reason being that 2 minutes previously it had been resting in a chilled cabinet and was now hot (very) by virtue of spending 3 minutes in a microwave oven. Soggy and rubbery pretty much sums the results up. I don't know about you but when I'm charged eight dollars for a pie I expect better than this.
We had planned to finish with coffee and cake after (the reason we wanted water to start) but after the surly brusque service we were happy to leave without further custom.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Location is good
  • Cons:Service is a reminder of how far we've advanced from this.
  • Last visit to Kekerengu: Jul 2006
  • Intro Updated Jul 18, 2006
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