Wellington local Matterhorn has opened a second eatery in Auckland’s Freemans Bay, in the lofty space formerly occupied by Libertine. Ever since opening in the Capital in 1963 with illicit all night parties, one attended by touring jazzman Louis Armstrong, Matterhorn has been a frequent stop for misfits, musicians and lovers of fine food and liquor. New owners Mark Keddell and chef Sean Marshall are giving Aucklanders a taste of the ‘fine dining with your shoes off’ hospitality the Matterhorn brand is famous. After half a century of keeping the eatery just for Wellingtonians, it’s time to give Aucklanders the Matterhorn experience. Keddell says “There’s nowhere else like Matterhorn. It combines incredible food, superb cocktails and live beats, with a laid-back atmosphere and on point service. It’s a distinct style of hospitality that Auckland currently lacks.”
Marshall says the duo-restaurant model is new to New Zealand, but has had success across the ditch with top-drawer establishments such as Movida and Longrain having eateries in both Sydney and Melbourne.
“To make it work you need to have a menu where every dish is well-thought out, balanced and gets diners excited. You need superb staff that are passionate about what they’re doing and the vibe needs to be complimentary in each place, but you don’t need to replicate it exactly.”
Marshall’s menu includes brand new dishes, reinvented classics such as wild rabbit with carrot and cardamom entrée and old signature favourites such as plate of duck.