THE RESTAURANT

Tantalus Estate Restaurant opened in September 2016. It offers diners a feeling of intimacy and privacy, notwithstanding its 200 person capacity.

HOURS & BOOKINGS

The restaurant is open 11am to 4pm daily. You are welcome to book online – advance bookings are highly recommended. Prior bookings are necessary for the private dining room, which seats up to 22 guests for dining, or up to 50 for a cocktail function.

THE BREWER’S LOUNGE

Located on the ground floor beside our brewery, discover the moody and secretive Alibi Brewer’s Lounge – reminiscent of a speakeasy from the Prohibition era. The lounge gives guests a sneak preview of the brewery and caters for 40 diners or 70 guests enjoying a canapé-style function.

REVIEWS

Within a week of opening we had a terrific review published in lifestyle website Denizen. We have also had many and continual positive online or email diner testimonials.

RESERVATIONS ARE ESSENTIAL – Please note, a 15% surcharge applies on public holidays

MAKE A

RESERVATION

TINO PASSANO

HEAD CHEF

As a boy, Tino jumped out of bed early on the weekends to clandestinely cook breakfast for his parents, delivering it to them in bed.  He’s pretty sure now that the delicious aromas wafting down the hallway were obvious, but he’s glad they played along, receiving their home-cooked delights with complete surprise.

Home for this budding foodie was Parys in South Africa.  His parents ran a catering company part time, introducing Tino to the creative enjoyment of cooking and hosting guests.  At just 18, while training full-time to be a pastry chef, he opened a company selling cakes.  His business skills grew to match his culinary flair and he secured his first Head Chef job.

Keen for adventure and international experience, Tino spent 3 years on two of the smallest Channel Islands: Herm and Alderney – island life beckoned. Tino was only in his early twenties, when we’re keen for the bright lights of a bustling city, but Tino was focused on becoming a brilliant pastry chef.

London called, in the name of Anton Mosimann who had gained 2 Michelin stars at The Dorchester Hotel. He then opened a Private Dining Club where Tino created exquisite desserts for Royalty from around the globe and it remains a career highlight.  After completing a stage at the Michelin starred Plume restaurant in the New Forest, Southern England, Tino headed to New Zealand for a six month contract at Mudbrick Restaurant here on Waiheke.  He moved from pastry to the hotline, was promoted to Sous Chef and remained at Mudbrick for 6 years. He’s super proud of being voted twice Runner-Up to represent NZ internationally at the Dilma Tea competition.  Competitors host an Afternoon Tea for the owner of Dilma Tea and renown Chef Simon Gault.

Tino has been on board at Tantalus from the outset and he became Head Chef in November. His strengths are his loyalty and positivity – he’s not interested in a stressful kitchen and sings at the top of his voice – he’s got a wickedly sonorous soprano creating instant fans of us all.  He treats his staff as he would like to have been treated, maintaining a healthy workplace vibe.

Tino remains deeply engaged with his South African heritage, visiting home annually.  BBQ’s are his go to happy place.  For relaxation you’ll find him making sausages to sizzle on the BBQ 3 or 4 nights a week.  His fiancée Tabitha is a Restaurant Manager and understands the commitment required in a restaurant kitchen on Waiheke.  So with a Cuisine Top 100 NZ restaurants nomination awarded to Tantalus in 2017 within just one year of operation, Tino’s going to lead us quietly and confidently into an exciting future.

 

HARRY HOLROYD

SOUS CHEF

When Michael Meredith decided to close his restaurant doors in 2017, his right-hand man, Chef Harry Holroyd was hot property on the dining scene.  Job offers came rolling in. Harry chose to tap into the vision and potential that Tantalus Estate offered – food gardens, beehives, olive groves, macadamias, wetlands, a craft brewery and vineyard.  He was ready to quit the city and share his fresh perspective, his adventurous and hard won talent with us.

Entering a busy kitchen as a dishwasher at 16 years old is not for the faint-hearted, especially when it’s the famed Antoines Restaurant, headed by the legendary Tony Astle.  Harry learned fast how to survive; to interact and to respect the harsh realities of life in a busy kitchen. Hungry for more experience, he swapped high-school for culinary school and worked the nightshift in Antoine’s demanding kitchen.  Within 18 months he was working alongside Tony Astle via a leap of faith blended with youthful enthusiasm. One fateful busy evening he took on Head Chef duties because he thought he could and because he had no choice. He’d long quit culinary school, opting to learn by doing in the gritty and sometimes brutal reality of a famous kitchen.

His biggest influence to date is ‘Mama Fay’ – we know her as Kate Fay from the long-lived, much adored Cibo Restaurant.  Harry says she took a cocky young Chef, broke him down, then built him back up again to become the Harry she could see was brimming with potential.  During the 10 plus years he’s worked on and off with Kate, she’s witnessed his transformation from kid to adult. She’s walked beside Harry through desperately difficult life experiences.  His respect for Kate is palpable and enduring.

Harry took a break from kitchens to sort his not-yet-20 year old self out.  He worked with an old boat-builder learning the art of fine precision joinery, shaping the kauri roof pods atop the stunningly renovated Auckland Art Gallery.  Like many of young kiwis, he travelled the world, landing in Austria to run an all German speaking Bistro kitchen showcasing an authentic experience. There he learned that the language and rhythms of the kitchen are the same the world over.  In Melbourne he worked with Mark Briggs (ex Vue du Monde) at The Shearing House when Mark was named Young Chef of the Year.

And so, at just 29, Harry has worked alongside many superstar Chefs. His dream it to own an orchard, feed the land, grow the food – animal and vegetable and to study the benefits of diet upon everything that he cultivates.  And of course, he will feed us with his efforts. You’ll be visually, sensorily and emotionally coloured in the distinctive Harry Holroyd palette.

 

TAMARA PENDOLA

PASTRY CHEF

Bio coming soon.

“The only disappointing part of the whole meal was when it came to an end.”

Harriet Johnstone, Denizen

KRISTIN TUCKER

MAÎTRE D’

Insatiable curiosity about culture and people led Kristin into the world of anthropological studies.  Theory became reality as she travelled the globe, landing on the shores of Waiheke.  She’s worked in many hot spots of hospitality – such as New York City, bringing her international experience and exceptional work ethic onboard.  Kristin guides the restaurant and staff with commanding focus.  If it needs doing, she’ll get it done, while juggling deftly behind the scenes.  She’s smart and sassy with a wicked sense of humour and a love of people… and all things health related. She teaches yoga and pilates; she runs marathons, she paddle boards… hmmm, it’s a relief for our beach-strolling staff to know she enjoys an Alibi beer and asado under the stars.  Kristin has swapped the mountains of Colorado for island life and the bounty if offers her … and she in turn offers Tantalus.

JOSHUA STALKER

RESTAURANT MANAGER

Bio coming soon.

JASON COLLINS

ASSISTANT RESTAURANT MANAGER

The idyllic seaside community of Cornwall in southern England thrives on tourism.  As a young boy, Jason’s parents introduced him to dining in restaurants in their home-town and it wasn’t just the food that captured Jason’s imagination.  Peopled by visitors, locals and eccentric characters, the microcosm of the restaurant intrigued him – a home away from home.  He went on to study hospitality and tourism, working in restaurants and bars across Australia, before returning to the UK.  In the middle of an English winter he spied an advertisement to apply for residency in New Zealand.  Within 3 weeks he was accepted and within 3 months he arrived on Waiheke Island to a job offer at Mudbrick.  That was in 2000 and this island has claimed him and won’t let go.  No wonder – it’s a small seaside community, thriving on tourism, within reach of a large city.  Perfect for the varied live music gigs he regularly enjoys.  Beaches in the summer, movies in the winter and time spent with the many friendships built over the years.  Waiheke has changed and grown, but Jason remains a loyal and much loved familiar face, welcoming the world through our doors.