Get to Know the Culinary Curiosities of South Canterbury

Gin being poured into a shot glass at Humdinger Gin Distillery.
While famous for its sheep runs and hardy shepherds, South Canterbury has far more to offer than farming and vast plains. The picturesque landscape of the region is filled with fertile soil and fittingly home to a huge number of innovative producers and makers of consumable goodness.

The Yellow Door Café

The Yellow Door exterior in Timaru.
Place South Canterbury Timaru
Cafes icon

One of the latest additions to Timaru’s café scene, The Yellow Door at the high end of Stafford Street is hard to miss.

The Running Duck

The kitschy interior of The Running Duck cafe in Geraldine.
Place South Canterbury Geraldine
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Stepping inside the Running Duck café in the heart of Geraldine is like stepping inside a proper kiwi bach, albeit with great coffee on tap.

Hector Black's

Four people sitting on couches around in a circle inside the bar at Hector Black's in Timaru.
Place South Canterbury Timaru
Bars icon Restaurants icon

If a unique, cosy atmosphere, regular live music and a great selection of beverages sound like your kind of bar, then Hector Black’s is a must-visit.

Saikou

Red leather bench seating at Saikou, Timaru.
Place South Canterbury Timaru
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If you find yourself craving a night of teppanyaki and whisky while in Timaru, point your nose to Saikou.

Arthur Street Kitchen

Couple sat at a table drinking coffee at Arthur St Kitchen, South Canterbury.
Place South Canterbury Timaru
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Renowned for its delicious breakfast and lunch menu, plus house-made baking and hearty salads, Arthur Street Kitchen takes pride in producing as much as possible on their premises.

Astro Café

People looking out to the mountain views at Astro Cafe, Tekapo.
Place South Canterbury Lake Tekapo
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Quite possibly the most scenic spot for a flat white in Aotearoa, Astro Café is a coffee shop experience not to be missed when visiting the Mackenzie region.

Barker's Foodstore & Eatery

Barker's syrup bottles on display at Barker's Foodstore and Eatery, Geraldine.
Place South Canterbury Geraldine
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Barker’s Foodstore & Eatery sits in a stunning setting on the banks of the Waihi River in the heart of Geraldine.

Humdinger Gin Distillery

Bottles of gin lined up in a row waiting for stickers to be placed on them at Humdinger Gin Distillery in Geraldine.
Place South Canterbury Geraldine

 There’s a sense of discovery when walking down the alleyway off the main street in Geraldine to a former garage workshop, which has been refurbished to house the...

Farm Barn Café

Flowers and cake on table at Farm Barn Café in Fairlie.
Place South Canterbury Fairlie
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If there was ever a perfect stop to make when on the road with the family, Farm Barn Café on top of Mount Michael in the heart of Mackenzie District is it.

Carnegie's Restaurant & Bar

Waitress serving a table at Carnegie's Restaurant and Bar, Fairlie.
Place South Canterbury Fairlie
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Set in a stunning, historical building that was originally built as a Carnegie library in the early 1900s, Carnegie's Restaurant & Bar is a true Mackenzie destination in...

Ministry of Works

Interior view of table at Ministry of Works, Twizel.
Place South Canterbury Twizel
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Ministry of Works is the social go-to for both Twizel residents and visitors alike.

Mint Folk & Co

A close up of a flat white on a table at Mint Folk and Co in Twizel.
Place South Canterbury Twizel
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Perhaps the most visually appealing cafe in the Mackenzie region, Mint Folk & Co is all about great food, great aesthetic and great service.

Ode to Long Lunches

People having a long lunch at Tussock Hill Vineyard, Christchurch.
Is there anything more satisfying than a lingering long lunch?

Ship Hop Brewing

Taster pots at Ship Hop Brewing, Timaru.
Place South Canterbury Timaru
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Timaru’s only microbrewery, Ship Hop Brewing, is a gem awaiting discovery.

Fairlie Bakehouse

Close up of a woman holding a paper bag with 'Fairlie Bakehouse' written on it.
Place South Canterbury Fairlie
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What began as a tiny family business with a team of four thirteen years ago, has grown to be one of the best known and most awarded pie-shops in the country – Fairlie Bakehouse.

The Greedy Cow Café

A close up of loaded toast on a table in the sunshine at the Greedy Cow in Tekapo.
Place South Canterbury Lake Tekapo
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This sunny corner store café in the heart of Lake Tekapo is a must stop whether you are just passing through or in town for longer.

The Oxford

A close up of the halloumi salad at The Oxford restaurant in Timaru.
Place South Canterbury Timaru
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Ask a Timaru local where to eat in town and chances are they will point you in the direction of The Oxford.

The Road to MacKenzie Region: A Guide to Geraldine and Fairlie

The hills around Fairlie, New Zealand.

Who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned day trip?

Geraldine Cheese Company

Geraldine Cheese Company exterior.
Place South Canterbury Geraldine

Geraldine Cheese Co. handcrafts small-batch cheese varieties in its petite factory in the heart of Geraldine town centre.

Café Verde

A covered verandah outside Cafe Verde, surrounded by greenery in Geraldine.
Place South Canterbury Geraldine
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Café Verde in Geraldine is known for its luscious garden setting and outstanding food. Located in an old phone-exchange building, this is the local café-goers meeting spot where generations of friends and family come together over a cuppa.

Silverstream Hotel

Dining area at Silverstream Hotel, Kimbell.
Place South Canterbury Kimbell
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The Silverstream Hotel, a historical country pub in Kimbell, is an iconic Mackenzie region destination.

Dark Sky Diner

Waitress serving a table at Dark Sky Diner, Tekapo.
Place South Canterbury Lake Tekapo
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Lakefront location, intimate interiors and compelling cuisine make Dark Sky Diner the ultimate Lake Tekapo dining destination.

Three Creeks

The three buildings of Three Creeks set in front of rolling hills.
Place South Canterbury Burkes Pass
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Part museum, part second hand and vintage store, part coffee cart and real fruit ice cream trailer – there is so much to explore at Three Creeks.

Blue Lake Eatery & Bar

Doorway looking into the bar area at Blue Lake Eatery and Bar, Tekapo.
Place South Canterbury Lake Tekapo
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Blue Lake Eatery & Bar boasts a menu that’s heavily influenced by the seasons and local produce - and with a French twist on Kiwi classics - think beef cheeks marinated in red wine or hot goat cheese salad with local Mackenzie honey.

Hydro Café & Twizel Bookshop

A door to the entrance to the bookshop from Hydro Café in Twizel.
Place South Canterbury Twizel
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Hydro Café has been keeping the good people of Twizel well hydrated for nearly a decade.