The hats are back! Cuisine Good Food Awards return for 2021

by | Aug 26, 2021 | News

The annual Cuisine magazine Good Food Awards returns this year for the first time since 2019 to celebrate excellence across New Zealand’s hospitality industry.

Presented by American Express, the Cuisine Good Food Awards (CGFA) celebrate brilliance in one of the industries that has been challenged the most during COVID-19 lockdowns countrywide. Now in its 16th year, the awards acknowledge the very best of New Zealand’s restaurants and chefs nationwide and produces the Cuisine Good Food Guide, showcasing outstanding places to eat and drink across the country.

Cuisine Editor and Co-Director Kelli Brett is delighted to see the timely return of the awards. “One of the strengths of our restaurant industry is its agility. COVID taught us that a great hospitality experience and the team that works so hard to create it is never again to be taken for granted. Our great restaurants have been able to react and survive in very innovative ways to stay in the game. These awards and the resulting Cuisine Good Food Guide will allow true food and drink lovers to make informed decisions and ensure that every dollar that they spend on dining out will be spent well. It has been a tough time for the industry, and it is not over yet. The awards come at a moment when these dedicated professionals truly deserve a humongous hug. We can’t wait to celebrate with them on 13 December.”

In a move that was ahead of its time in 2019, the awards will once again be broadcast digitally on 13 December, allowing restaurant teams, and food and drink enthusiasts across the country to pull up a front-row seat at the New Zealand hospitality industry’s night of nights. This year also sees the introduction of two new awards, reflective of both the changing hospitality landscape and the need to recognise meticulous talent – Best Hotel Restaurant and Best Pastry Chef.

Cuisine selects over 40 experts located around the country, led by food and dining expert Kerry Tyack, to anonymously judge restaurants nationwide throughout the year and determine the top 100 list. “As news of the return of the awards filters through the restaurant community, there is palpable excitement,” says Kerry. “Chefs love the Cuisine Good Food Awards because they know they represent a singular focus on the delivery of a truly sophisticated, satisfying and consumer driven dining experience. They appreciate that these awards are built on nearly two decades of development and refinement and they value thetransparency and expertise brought to the assessment process by a team of the finest food and dining observers and commentators in the country.”

The Cuisine Good Food Awards is the only nationwide restaurant awards programme of its kind. Now independently owned, the annual awards are viewed globally as the authority on the dining scene in New Zealand.

For more information on the Cuisine Top 100, regional breakdowns, full list of awards, and information on viewing the awards online, visit,, or follow @cuisinemagazine on Instagram.

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Peter Wright

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