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“EXcellent fish attentive service”

Green Dolphin Restaurant & Bar
Ranked #2 of 58 Restaurants in Kaikoura
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $52
Cuisines: Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Late Night, Reservations
Welwyn Garden City, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
308 reviews
146 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 155 helpful votes
“EXcellent fish attentive service”
Reviewed February 19, 2013 via mobile

We were recommended to eat here by our B&B host and were concerned by the poor report from the gentleman from Canada, but we were assured that this was completely out of character
We had the oven baked Tarakihi with a soy, coriander, ginger and chilli glaze which tasted as good as it sounds. This meal certainly rivalled the best fish we have had in New Zealand (35 degrees in Pahia) and was certainly the best fish we have had so far in South Island
We were served by Casey who was charming and attentive
If you are looking for an excellent. Meal in Kaikoura look no further!

1 Thank HSeeingtheworld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
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  • English first
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English first
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Yummy Dinner Place”
Reviewed February 12, 2013

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed the food here and had friendly service. We enjoyed the lobster and especially loved the desserts. The papardelle pasta is also exceptional. It has a romantic and intimate setting for dinner. It’s a great choice and an easy walk from most hotels.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank melissadianna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“No Crayfish, Poor Value, Poor Service, Definitely NOT Fine Dining”
Reviewed February 10, 2013

My wife and I were at the Green Dolphin on Feb 5 for dinner and I can say that it was THE ABSOLUTE WORST restaurant we ate at in our month long tour of Australia and New Zealand. We made a reservation MONTHS in advance and not only did we arrive (on time) to find that our table was not ready, THEY HAD NO CRAYFISH! You can't believe our disappointment as this was the only opportunity we had to enjoy this dish; one we had been greatly anticipating for a long time. In fact, besides the seal watching (which was much better up the coast by the way), this was the only reason why we stopped in this town.

I wanted to leave but my wife asked to stay since we had a table with a the best view in house (small consolation) and "maybe they would make it up to us". I agreed to stay, hoping they would redeem themselves ....


I ordered the green lipped mussels which were just ok, but really nothing to write home about (I had much better elsewhere in NZ). But the fish of the day would have made Chef Ramsey have a complete fit! Imagine a small unappetizing looking piece of fried fish on a bed of dry, flavorless roasted potatoes and a couple chopped carrots with the worst, fake hollandaise sauce you have ever tasted! All that for the "low price" of $30+. What a ripoff! I thought it was some kind of cruel joke when the server put the plate in front of me! I did my best to choke it down with my wine but despite being very hungry, I never finished. My wife's chicken meal was not much better. We can't comment on the dessert as we left immediately after our main.

Sometimes service can make up for the failings of the kitchen but our service was no better! It was slow and our server left my glass empty for at least 20 minutes!!! When she finally offered us more wine she didn't know what we ordered. What a fine dining experience! Laughable.

The funny thing is that when we told the person at our motel or our dinner choice, she said it was an excellent "fine dining" restaurant. Maybe she had never eaten there before. Maybe she had and was lying. Maybe there is some collusion going on.

Besides the novice level food and the lousy service, the restaurant itself had none of the characteristics of a fine dining establishment. There were no table cloths and little to no ambiance. It was more like a diner with candles.

This restaurant ruined our stay in Kaikoura. The only dark spot in our otherwise brilliant visit to Australia and New Zealand.

I would give this restaurant a worse than terrible rating but I can't. I will never step foot in that restaurant again and nor will anyone who asks me about a restaurant to eat at in Kaikoura.

If you like good food and a view, take a walk along the shoreline and eat somewhere else!!!!

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Mike155019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
greenbone, Owner at Green Dolphin Restaurant & Bar, responded to this review, February 12, 2013
Thankyou for your feedback,We are a family run business with generations of hospitality experience that has been providing Kaikoura with delicous food and great service for over 20 years.
The restaurant only sells fresh crayfish which we buy direct from the fisherman daily..I am sure Ramsey would approve!..unfortunatly if they all sell on the night then thats it until the next days fresh crays turn up. We do allow people to book these when they make a booking.
The Green Dolphin restaurant is all about fresh local product we do not consider ourselves to be a fine dining establishment so you were miss informed. we consider our restaurant to be a place where people come to enjoy the best of local fare in a relaxing enviroment.We reckon we do a pretty good job but unforunatly you cant please everyone.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Best meal in NZ”
Reviewed February 9, 2013

This restaurant was recommended to us by our B&B owner and we were not disappointed. The staff was friendly, the view was great and the food delightful. We had green lipped mussels as a starter - extremely good quality of mussels and great sauce. As mains, we had the steak, which was cooked to perfection, and the crayfish, which was not cheap but also very enjoyable. All in all a great dinner in a great town.

Visited February 2013
Thank Car B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
37 Cooperage Road, Trewoon, St.Austell. Cornwall
Level Contributor
33 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Recommendation justified.”
Reviewed February 9, 2013

We were sent to this restaurant and were not dissappointed. The very first time I had tried Blue nose fish and was completely blown away by the taste. The staff were very knowledgable and informative whilst being friendly. The food overall was amazing and were pleased it was recommended to us.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Cooperage
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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