THE STORY OF FROG AND KIWI RESTAURANT_
The story begins when 3 people met: Alison, Michel and David.
Alison and Michel lived in the South of France, and played golf at the Teoula club where David was the chef of the club's restaurant. It was after numerous meals and Michel's (in) famous 40th birthday, that a friendship was born. Every time they met, David would ask many questions about New Zealand: What is it? What is happening there? What myth hides behind the All Blacks? Who are the Maoris and what are their stories?... David started to dream. Each Saturday, after a round of golf, lunch, and a glass of wine or 2, they talked about opening a restaurant in New Zealand at this funny unpronounceable place called Mangawhai. It didn’t take long for David to adopt this idea to work and discover this mysterious country. Alison and Michel had already the name of the restaurant "FROG & KIWI"; representing their French and Kiwi culinary and cultural origins. Here we are ... The adventure can really begin. Alison and Michel returned to New Zealand, the project commenced: fortuitously meeting their future landlord, the extreme sportsman, Mark Rowbotham. Meanwhile, in France, David worked on new recipes, creating the menu. David arrived finally in Mangawhai to be employed not only to adapt his recipes to kiwi products but to paint tables, walls, decks, tile the floor, build furniture and whatever other job came up. Definitely the kiwi way! There was also the hard job of tasting recipes between friends, and the occasional game of golf with All Blacks! Saturday 11th February 2006, the Frog & Kiwi finally opened its doors with family, friends and landlords pitching in. It was a great emotion for ALL to see the restaurant taking life... The seasons have passed with some difficult moments, but mainly lots of fun bringing a little of France to the magnificent village of Mangawhai. Since the beginning of this project, it was planned that Alison and Michel wouldn’t stay at the Frog & Kiwi forever, that David would take over the restaurant and continue the adventure. Here we are: Alison and Michel have embarked on another project, but they are not far, so don't be surprised if you are served by them occasionally. David is still there in his kitchen developing new recipes and tempt you with his Classic and Seasonal menus for your pleasure. The story is beautiful and it continues...