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“Worth the drive to Russell just to eat here.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Wharf - Restaurant & Bar

The Wharf - Restaurant & Bar
Russell Waterfront | Bay of Islands, Russell, New Zealand
09 403 7771
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Ranked #10 of 16 restaurants in Russell
Price range: $16 - $24
Cuisines: New Zealand
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Auckland, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Worth the drive to Russell just to eat here.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2010

Kamamura has to be one of the best value restaurants with the best food in the area. We went there last night with a group of 9 people - always a good test of a restaurant's capabilities - and although it was a busy night the service was prompt (and actually really friendly without being overly familiar) and the food was simply exquisite.

I'm afraid I'm not observant enough to comment on what everyone else had, but I had the prawn ravioli and then the slow roasted lamb shoulder on celeriac. Both were stunning. My wife had the scallops with black pudding (yeah, sounds strange, but was lovely) and the pork belly entre as a main, which she tells me was perfect.

Toward the end of the meal one of my dining companions raised his glass and proposed a toast to me for suggesting we dine there. I think that sums it up! The food is as good as the best in Auckland, but the prices are not high and the setting is nicer than anything I've ever sat in - that view past the Pohutakawa across the sea to the setting sun is the most relaxing thing.

Well done Kamakura, I hope the locals appreciate what they have in their little town! We will certainly be back!

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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149 reviews from our community

77% Recommend
    72
    43
    20
    7
    7
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Lovely meal overlooking beautiful bay”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2010

Ate here twice during a recent visit to New Zealand. The first time, had dessert only. The chocolate dream (warm chocolate cake with melting center) served with manuka honey ice cream was amazing! My dinner companions loved the rhubarb crumble. Returned for lunch another day and had an excellent chicken, ham, avocado sandwich with the freshest fries! The wonderful food is accompanied by a view of the water looking across to Paihia. There was only one service staff and she was extremely attentive and helpful. A comfortable place environment.

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Buckinghamshire, England
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Great food and views”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2010

We ate here on two of the three nights we stayed in Russell, going back because the first time was so good and we weren't disappointed. It is furnished more like a bistro than a restaurant , and on our first night there (Saturday) it was very noisy, as there were a couple of birthday parties going on, but we would rather have the sound of people enjoying themselves (as they were) at dinner than any blasted piped pop music! But nothing could detract from the excellent food that was the main attraction. We tried fish on the first night and steak on the second night and both were beautifully cooked and presented and absolutely mouthwateringly great. We only ever have one course at dinner in NZ because we find the helpings too big for us, so we can't comment on starters or puds.
On the second night, our waiter even found us a bin end Oz shiraz that was originally on the cellar selection list, and it was an absolute stunner, which he let us have for the same price as the one we originally asked for but which they didn't have in stock. It made the meal even more enjoyable. I would highly recommend this restaurant, especially as it has views over the lake as well.

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Croughton, England
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Enjoyable food but not outstanding”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2010

We believed this was going to be best restaurant in Russell but it was disappointing. It was enjoyable but not as good as we expected. It is quite large and very casual - more llike a lunch spot than dinner place, though it does have a lovely view. The menu was disappointing although the food was good. The tables were too close to each other and we were unfortunate to sit next to a very loud American couple, so we couldn't hear our own conversations.

    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Hereford, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
128 reviews 128 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 60 cities Reviews in 60 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
“Superb food in a great setting”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2010

We stayed in Russell for 4 nights and ate here for 2 of them (could have been more!). The food was superb and the service excellent - they apologised when we couldn't be served for 10 minutes - and the view out over Russell Bay is perfect. Try the signature risotto dish with a glass of sauvignon blanc - the best meal we have had in New Zealand. The place is clean, modern and stylish, and you can eat outside if the weather permits. Fantastic!

    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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