New Opening: Puha & Pakeha's Permanent Grey Lynn Eatery

The brakes are staying put — you can now find the popular food truck's Maori fusion street kai in one place

Kumara and coconut bites; hapuka salad with karengo seaweed and kumara crisps; tua tua fritters with kina chili mayo from Puha & Pakeha. Photo / Rebecca Zephyr Thomas

Food truck Puha & Pakeha will now serve its locally famous kai-on-wheels in a new, permanent eatery in Grey Lynn.

Open now, expect the same fusion street food husband and wife Jarrad and Belinda Mckay have become known for since taking modern Maori cuisine to the masses in 2014.

They started the business after seeing a lack of representation of New Zealand and Maori cuisine at local markets and events.

From left: A guitar for customers to play; raw harpuka salad. Photo / Rebecca Zephyr Thomas

“It’s going to be next level,” says Jarrad of the new venture. “At the caravan, we can do only around four dishes at a time but now we can do so much more, and people can finally track us down in one place,” he says.

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The menu celebrates native ingredients such as tua tua fritters with kina chilli mayo and a Reuben sandwich with hangi-cooked pastrami and rewena bread. There will be a few new creations and sweet treats on the updated menu.

From left: Kawakawa meringue; Kiwiana interior. Photo / Rebecca Zephyr Thomas

Try a kawakawa meringue, or fried bread icecream sandwich with manuka caramel sauce, and milkshakes with combinations like strawberry and horopito and Belinda’s extra special combo — Marmite and chocolate.

“I know Marmite is not a native ingredient but it’s just so iconically Kiwi. People are pleasantly surprised at the taste. It’s like salted chocolate and the Marmite really brings out the depth of flavour.”

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The service will be “hip, fast and casual”, with all dishes served in the same compostable packaging used in the caravan. The homely interior will be a place to sit down and enjoy, with native timbers and plants, pieces of retro Kiwiana, and a guitar to pick up, play and sing waiata.

Jarrad and Belinda Mckay inside Puha & Pakeha in Grey Lynn. Photo / Rebecca Zephyr Thomas

Jarrad says he’s looking forward to having new customers and familiar faces in the space. “It’s the manaakitanga — the hosting of guests. I love it when someone asks me what horopito is and I get to talk about native ingredients.”

The caravan will still hit the road for the expanding catering side of the business — they do lots of weddings for those wanting something uniquely Kiwi for international guests — but right now settling into their new home feels good. 

• 108 Surrey Crescent, Grey Lynn. Open Wednesday-Sunday. Visit Puhaandpakeha.co.nz

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