Karahui Wine Bar & Eatery

Come together at this Martinborough restaurant, where an old bank has been transformed with classic, contemporary flair

Where

Wairarapa

Location

1 Memorial Square
Martinborough

Contact

Phone

Email

Karahui Wine Bar & Eatery showcases incredible food and a carefully curated wine selection, backed by elegant decor that gives the classic building, Martinborough’s 1909 historic bank, a whole new lease on life.

In te reo Māori, karahui means “to come together, gather, and meet”, and certainly fulfils the promise of its name. Built from the ground up by passionate and experienced folks, Karahui was created by business partners Dudley-Anne and Murray Hill of Neighbourhood Coffee, Dan Murphy of Lismore House, and Karen-Anne Frost. The group are well-versed in creating atmosphere and experience, and put local talent at the core of everything they do.

We love Martinborough Aotearoa, it’s our Tūrangawaewae the place we stand and call home and we wanted to share all the flavours and childhood food memories that remind us of home in a modern and innovative way.

Dudley-Anne Hill

Menu and wine list

The menu is designed by chefs James Anderson, who previously fed Wellington locals at Floriditas, and Dave Napier from Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. It includes sharing plates and delectable morsels. Mouthwatering menu favourites include grilled octopus and rimurimu romesco, beef tongue and horopito pomme purée, confit duck with kumara and Pinot Noir, and rēwena and matcha doughnuts for dessert.

A plenitude of local venues offered up their wines, which led to the Karahui team expanding their wine list to include a variety of Martinborough and international delights. The list is made to pair with all dishes, with friendly staff able to guide your choice. For those only interested in wine, a separate tasting room with a newly built deck and courtyard is where Karahui hosts private tasting events, including events for boutique vineyards without cellar doors.

History and design

When it comes to decor, Karahui has struck the balance between comfort and character, creating a place that people want to relax in and return to. Originally a BNZ bank and more recently The Wine Bank, the historic building was built in 1909 and was purchased by the current landlords to complete seismic work and safeguard the future of the building.

With that work complete, the space has been transformed again. Now, local art adorns the brick walls – including a large painting of the southern Wairarapa coast by artist Don Hill. Stunning chandeliers commissioned by the local glass art collective, Crystal Chain Gang, hang from the ceiling.

The final result is vibrant, modern, and bright. Winter calls for a cosy seat inside, while in summertime the outdoor courtyard overlooking Martinborough is the place to be.

You might like