The Bay of Plenty is famous for its kiwifruit. © Shutterstock

Indulge: food and drink in Tauranga

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1. Somerset Cottage

Whenever anyone asks me for a recommendation for a great place to dine, Somerset Cottage in Bethlehem is always the first that comes to mind. The restaurant is a personal reflection of the owners’ tastes, and they do a remarkable job of cooking and presenting the kind of food that they themselves enjoy to eat. The quality of the ingredients, the delivery and the presentation is second to none.

Another amazing dish from Somerset Cottage in #Tauranga 🍽 Fig Tartine

A post shared by Tracie Heasman Photographer (@tracie_heasman) on Sep 28, 2016 at 11:48am PDT

Great modern food with no nonsense, and the service is just perfect.

2. Rising Tide

Recently rebranded from the slightly seedy Brewers Bar to The Rising Tide - Brewhouse and Eatery, this outlet on Newton Street has some very original features. The bar and restaurant have been opened up to integrate with the award-winning Mount Brewing Co brewery so customers can interact with the brewers at work. A real bonus is the addition of Food Truck Fridays at the adjoining council reserve.

#elmonoloconz #foodtruckfriday #porkbelly #freerange #pulledbeef #chillijam

A post shared by El Mono Loco (@elmonoloconz) on May 6, 2016 at 1:58am PDT

3. Post Bank

Tauranga may not have a heritage museum, but Post Bank Bar and Restaurant on Mount Maunganui Road is the closest thing to it. It looks a little like an old library when you step through the doors of the historical building, and there are strange artefacts everywhere. Some of them really make you look twice.

But the best thing about this restaurant is its menu. This is fine dining at its best, but be sure to make a booking as Postbank is popular and there are only a few tables. 

4. Macau

Asian fusion has been brought to The Strand with Macau Bar Kitchen & Lounge. Although the menu may not make sense to anyone, I really enjoyed the meals I had at Macau. Plate sharing is the thing to do here, the wine list is great, and the staff are efficient and professional.

Chill out Sunday evening #arigatoramen #chillouttauranga #macautauranga #sundayeveningtauranga

A post shared by arigato ramen noodles (@arigatoramen) on Mar 11, 2017 at 8:36pm PST

The décor is rather elegant and cosmopolitan, which is something I appreciate when eating out.

5. Pluto - more than a juice bar

For a quick bite at lunchtime in downtown Tauranga, I think you cannot miss out on Pluto. Located on Devonport Road, this busy take-out place does a roaring trade. The team is always friendly and they serve amazing fresh salads.

It’s quite surprising to see the amount they can squeeze into a small box. I’m never left hungry. I try to focus on healthy eating most of the time, and their super delicious Buddha bowls are just the ticket.

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