What is New Zealand’s signature dish?

I’ve always struggled to answer this question as I feel like we’ve mostly adopted famous dishes from other countries and put our own spin on them.

Obviously traditional Maori food like the Hangi will always be a top contender but I think if we did a ‘Family Feud’ style quiz on everyday New Zealanders, fish & chips would also rank pretty high on the list.

Today’s delicious meal at the new ‘Seafood Collective’ at Tauranga Crossing, located near Pak’nSave reminded me that when Kiwi fish & chips is done right, it’s pretty hard to beat!

Styled in a casually cool, upmarket restaurant manner, it’s a different vibe to your ‘side of the road’ fast fish & chips establishment.

It has a menu bursting with kiwi crowd favourites + adds their own slightly gourmet twist. As a health enthusiast, I opted for the grilled salmon and side salad while Rob opted for the ‘fush’ burger and fries.

My salmon was delicious… it melted in my mouth and the side salad turned out to be a whole bowl of goodness. Rob’s fish burger had a certain x-factor that just can’t be explained, but I think it was the American style bun, sauce combinations, fresh fish and complementary dressings.

I asked Ben – The Seafood Collective expert, a few questions to give you some more background + context into my restaurant experience.

  • How/when did the Seafood Collective start? 

The Seafood Collective has been in development for a number of years, and we finally opened our first store in May last year.  We wanted to create a place where people want to meet, spend time with family and friends and sample some of the best seafood that New Zealand has to offer.   We identified there was a gap in the market for a Fast Casual Seafood business, and The Seafood Collective was born.

  • What was the philosophy behind the Seafood Collective?

We wanted to showcase New Zealand Seafood to New Zealanders, and provide a fun vibrant location for kiwis to enjoy a decent feed of New Zealand sourced seafood, without the big prices.  We really want to give customers that “wow I wasn’t expecting that” experience.

  • What do you think The Seafood collective is best known for?

Quality Seafood, offering customers a unique seafood dining experience from fish and chips, to our chef designed gourmet burgers and tasty tacos, not to mention our seafood platters with a little bit of everything.

  • Where is your fish/seafood sourced from?

All our suppliers we work with are Marine Steward Council (MSC) certified and are committed to sustainable fishing practices.

If you’re keen to catch some fresh seafood for lunch or dinner… take a trip to the Seafood Collective at the crossing.

It’s open every day from 11.30am until 8 or 8.30pm