13 Filipino Restaurants You Should Visit in New Zealand!

13 Filipino Restaurants You Should Visit in New Zealand!

Middle Earth has...Filipino food?

New Zealand (NZ) is a land of many things. Lush green pastures, blinding snowy mountains, star-studded skies, and of course, it’s also Middle Earth. Aside from New Zealand’s visual appeal, you also have to look at the culture and people. Kiwis are popular for being kind and open, so much so that NZ has a growing population of immigrants to back their stellar reputation. 

Among these immigrants are Filipinos who make up 1.5% of New Zealand’s population; and according to a 2017 study, they’re the happiest migrants in NZ, rating their happiness an 8/10.  So what does this growing Filipino population mean to New Zealand? Simple: Delicious, drool-inducing, Filipino food! There are lots of Filipino restaurants in New Zealand, most of them found in Auckland. Here’s a guide to popular Filipino restaurants you should visit!


1. Little Manila

The restaurant name couldn’t get more Filipino. Little Manila is the premiere Filipino restaurant in Wellington that serves authentic Filipino food. The owners, Ogi and Anya, started the business in 2018 with the aim of cooking up traditional Filipino cuisine while giving it a modern twist. So yes, the food will be packed with flavour just like Filipino food is supposed to taste, but it will also be healthy!

Try their Filipino Buddha Bowls like the Keto, High Fiber, and the Classic Healthy bowl. If you want to indulge yourself, Little Manila also serves hearty Pinoy breakfasts like Tosilog and Tapsilog. You can’t miss out on the Filipino favourites either. The Sizzling Sisig, Bicol Express, and Lechon Kawali are all calling your name!

Address: 151 Willis Street, Capital Market, Te Aro, Wellington City

*  You can also find branches in Porirua and Lower Hutt.

Also read: 5 Things You Need to Know About Living in Wellington, New Zealand


2. Boracay Garden

Boracay isn’t just popular in the Philippines for its White Beach and snorkelling sites. It’s also known for all the comfort food anyone could crave for after a dip in the sea. And now, the culinary spirit of Boracay has found its way to New Zealand. Boracay Garden was founded by Marjorie and Stuart Bennett in 2016. Marjorie Bennett actually has another Filipino restaurant in Bahrain called Pinoy Turo Garden; but she settled in New Zealand wanting to bring authentic Filipino food to the diverse people in the country. 

This Filipino restaurant in New Zealand serves Pinoy staples such as Banana Turon, Arroz Caldo, Kare-Kare, Sinigang na Baka, Palabok, and all day breakfast Silog dishes among many others. They even arrange boodle fights, a unique Filipino tradition which originated in the military. Scrumptious food is laid down on banana leaves while soldiers eat as quickly as possible with their hands. It’s a friendly competition to get their fill of hefty servings of rice, fish, meat, and fruits. Don’t sweat it, though. In a restaurant setting, you can take your time!

Address: 124 Customs Street West, The Viaduct Auckland 1010

3. HomeCooked Filipino Cuisine

Inspired by the cuisine from Pampanga — the Culinary Capital of the Philippines — HomeCooked Filipino Cuisine offers authentic food that caters to any kind of palate; Philippine food, after all, is influenced by many other cuisines in Asia and the west. This Filipino restaurant boasts of traditional, modern, and creative flavours combined, which customers can get at affordable prices. Locals can even order online from three branches in Auckland: Mt. Albert, Elliot, and Wairau. 

You have to try the traditional Pork Adobo, Daing na Bangus, and Crispy Pata. As for Filipino desserts, you can’t go wrong with Halo-Halo, Leche Flan, and Buko Pandan! If you decide to have a full dinner at this Filipino restaurant, we guarantee you’ll be stuffed until after breakfast the next day. 

Address: 6/19 Link Drive, Wairau Valley, Auckland 0627;

39 Elliott Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010

4. Kalye Manila

Kalye Manila is understood to be one of the best Filipino restaurants in New Zealand. It was established in 2017 and run by a Filipino family. This pretty much explains how the business has expanded to three branches in Auckland: Manukau, Panmure, and Auckland CBD. Kalye Manila offers not just authentic Filipino food, but also fine dining, with a delicious aroma wafting in the air to match. 

Its best-sellers include Chicken Inasal, Pork Sisig, Crispy Pata, and Lechon Kawali. But don’t forget the tasty veggies too, like the Pork Ensalada, Pinakbet, and Laing. What’s more, you can finally try the Filipino version of spaghetti here. Expect it to be sweet and memorable, just like how Filipino kids always want it to be.

Address: B1/710 Great South, Manukau;

68 Queens Rd, Panmure;

4 Upper Queen St., Auckland CBD

5. Nanam Eatery

Experience elevated Filipino food right here at Nanam. Nanam was founded in 2015 by Chef Andrew Soriano and Chef Jessabel Granada, who wanted to offer unique and modern interpretations of Filipino cuisine in the local culinary scene. They started small, but what began as a humble food stall boomed into a fine dining restaurant where customers are now encouraged to book for reservations. #PinoyPride, indeed. 

Nanam boasts of different menu sets, with a special Bottomless Brunch set only available during the weekends. Try their signature Taco Pao, which features sticky pork belly and pickles, plus their Roast Chicken Sinigang, Lamb Adobo Croquettas, and NZ Angus “Bistek.” Yup, that last one is NZ meat cooked Filipino style. There’s a lot more variations and unique flavours to try in this Filipino restaurant!

Address: 178 Hurstmere Rd, Takapuna, Auckland

6. Turo-Turo Philippine Cafe

Charie Shearer and Mary-Jane Roxas founded Turo-Turo in 2010 with the mission of bringing authentic Filipino food to New Zealand. At that time, there were only a few takeaway services of Filipino food and groceries around Auckland. It was a challenge for Charie and Mary-Jane because it meant they would have to introduce a relatively new cuisine to the people of Auckland. But after going through business pains and expanding their team, Turo-Turo Philippine Cafe finally became a huge success in the city. 

Filipinos missing home and foreigners wanting a taste of the Philippines will basically find everything here, from the classic Adobo to the iconic Pinoy Spaghetti. Their mains already come with rice and soup, and they offer catering too. Delicious and economical — that’s truly the Filipino way. 

Address: 26a Mayfair Place, Glen Innes 1072, Auckland

7. Natalia’s Kitchen

Adding to this list of Filipino restaurants in New Zealand is a place that specialises in both Philippine and Spanish cuisine. The founders of Natalia’s Kitchen, Sybil Xanthiana and Jaye de Jesus built their business from scratch just like their fellow hardworking Pinoys in Auckland; now, Natalia’s Kitchen is arguably the leading Filipino caterer in the city. 

Their Filipino staples include Salpicao, Krispy Dinuguan, Sisig, and Lumpiang Shanghai. But as the Philippines has Spanish culture too, the restaurant serves a lot of Spanish tapas with various spreads and flavours. On top of that, you can also order drool-inducing chicken and seafood paella! Korean food lovers might also want to try Natalia’s own version of Japchae. You’ll surely have more than enough food options here!

Address: 64 Ormiston Road, Unit 6, Auckland, Auckland 2019

8. Melting Pot Streeteats

Filipino street food, anyone? When you’re visiting the Philippines, trying out street food is a must. There are lots of unique flavours and different textures to experience, from something as basic as barbecued chicken to something as interesting as skewered pork intestines. They may intimidate you at first, but trust us, Filipino street food is one of the best. And you can have them all at Melting Pot Streeteats

We suggest you try street food like Dynamite, Kwek-Kwek, Empanadita, or even Cheese Sticks if you want to take things slow. But in case you’re not in the mood for Filipino street food, you can still enjoy classic Filipino cuisine at Melting Pot. Like many other Filipino restaurants in New Zealand, they cater for birthdays, weddings, and baptisms too!

Address: 32 Jellicoe Road, Panmure Panmure, New Zealand 1072


9. Arbie Restaurant

Known to be the Home of the Boodle Fight, Arbie Restaurant is the most recommended place to enjoy Filipino food in Christchurch. As we’ve described above, a boodle fight is a military tradition in the Philippines where food is laid out on a stretch of banana leaves while soldiers grab their share as quickly as possible using their hands. In Arbie Restaurant, you get to pick among different boodle sets!

The Duel Boodle Fight is good for two to three people and has five subsets, each of them a different mix of Filipino cuisines. These include Crispy Squid, Sinigang, Chicken Inasal, and Garlic Rice among other tasty dishes. If you’re eating with a group, it’s best to order the Family Boodle Fight, which has subsets that can cover from up to four or 18 people, depending which one you order. This is a perfect way to glimpse how Filipinos truly bond over food!

Address: Shop 1, 245 Ferry Road, Waltham Christchurch

10. Chillax Cafe & Filipino Restaurant

With the goal to familiarise Christchurch locals with Filipino food, Chillax Cafe offers customers something they can eat for any time of the day. The cafe offers a range of Silog breakfasts, like Bangsilog (boneless milkfish), Longsilog (sausage), and Tocilog (sweet pork). All of these are served with freshly cooked garlic rice and two sunny-side-up eggs. For snacks, why not have a serving of Filipino noodles like Pancit Canton and Palabok?

As for lunch and dinner, you can’t go wrong with Lechon Kawali, Bicol Express, Dinuguan, and Sinigang na Baboy. Basically all the delicious Filipino dishes served with broth and stew are available in Chillax Cafe for your… well, relaxation. Once you’ve had your fill, cool off with iconic Filipino desserts like Halo-Halo and Mais Con Yelo!

Address: 249 Stanmore Rd., Richmond Christchurch

11. Sari Sari Filipino Kitchen

If the idea of peanuts and coconut milk intrigues you, make your way to Sari Sari Filipino Kitchen. This Filipino restaurant in New Zealand specialises in Kare-Kare (peanut sauce-based recipes) and Ginataan (coconut milk based recipes). These two dishes are Filipino favourites, but for some, both Kare Kare and Ginataan can be acquired tastes. Take that as a challenge and try the food for yourself!

You can order three varieties of Kare Kare from Sari Sari’s menu, mainly salmon, beef, and vegetable; while the Ginataan series offers Bicol Express, Lamang Dagat (seafood), and Ginataang Gulay (vegetables). Apart from these staples, you can take your pick from adobo or grilled pork and chicken. Thinking of throwing a fiesta? Sari Sari has a menu for that too, so you better leave room in your stomach for noodles, deep-fried fish, and their Whole Lechon Belly!

Address: 177 High Street, (behind Black & White Coffee), Christchurch City 8011

12. Cuzina

What do Filipinos love aside from lechon, adobo, and rice? Even more rice — unlimited rice, in fact! And that’s exactly what Cuzina is offering. It’s the first-ever restaurant in Christchurch to offer unlimited rice to everyone. You can pair your unlimited rice with Filipino classics like  Crispy Pata marinated with herbs and spices; Adobo Salmon dipped in coconut cream; and Bulalo, which is a comforting beef shank soup! Don’t forget to try their Filipino desserts, the bestseller being the Sapin-Sapin cake — layers of glutinous rice and coconut desserts!

Address: 102 Riccarton Road, Christchurch

13. Chef Astig EuroAsian Cuisine

In case you were wondering, “astig” is the Filipino word for “cool.” It’s an apt name for a Filipino restaurant that specialises in hearty burgers and soyalicious taho. Taho is a Filipino street food that’s basically made out of silken tofu, tapioca, and syrup — the ultimate comfort street food for many Filipinos. 

To taste their most Filipino burger, order the Astig Pork Longganisa Burger, which is packed with garlicky bacon, fried egg, tomato, onion, and cheese. They have various taho flavours as well, from classic and langka to pandan; some of their flavours aren’t even widely available in the Philippines! Other cool servings to try would be their Pork Sisig Burrito Wrap, Palabok Combo, and of course, a selection of Silog dishes. What’s more, Chef Astig delivers and caters to all events. Convenient, no?

Address: Shop 1/378 Ferry Road, Woolston, Christchurch

Also read: 15 Useful Māori Phrases & Basic Greetings for Your Future Trip to New Zealand + Fun Facts!

There are plenty more Filipino restaurants in New Zealand, from Hamilton all the way to Dunedin. As more Filipinos are finding a new home in New Zealand, locals and foreign travellers can expect even more delicious Pinoy culinary spots to pop up in different parts of Middle Earth; and you can bet each dish will be a party in your mouth. Kain na!

About Author

Therese Sta. Maria
Therese Sta. Maria

Therese's close friends know that if they haven’t seen her around recently, then she’s probably having an adventure with her luggage and camera in hand. Though she loves staying at home and spending lazy afternoons with friends, there are times when she has to be "away from home to feel at home," — that’s when she’s bitten by the travel bug. See her travels on Instagram @reesstamaria.


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