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Ready to go on another taste-tangling adventure? Kitchen Takeover is excited to announce its first-ever pop up restaurant collaboration with celebrity chefs Karena and Kasey Bird. From 25 February to 23 April, the Taiao edition will bring you a deeply cultural, locally-inspired fine-dining feast created by two of New Zealand’s culinary superstars. 

The menu will be designed by Kasey and Karena and will draw from their whakapapa and upbringing. On the night you’ll be delivered this amazing experience by either Kasey and Karena Bird or Kitchen Takeover’s Head Chef Rob Forsman. Rob has head cheffed for Al Brown and Simon Gault and has ladlefuls of culinary talent.  

Set in a Tauranga secret location, we will celebrate the Māori deities of the natural world through a six-course degustation dinner. A truly immersive experience, each mouth-watering moment will be inspired by Atua Māori and the Taiao. 

Since winning Masterchef in 2014, Kasey and Karena have travelled to over 50 destinations across the globe to meet chefs at the forefront of gastronomy. They will take the envelope-pushing techniques they’ve learnt and combine them with strong family traditions using traditional Māori cooking techniques and flavours. On your plate will be the best produce New Zealand has to offer with an emphasis on local Bay of Plenty growers and makers.  

Based on the menu’s native nourishment, we will only be offering two dietary alternatives for this event, which are gluten-free and pescatarian. For all our vegans, and vegetarians and other dietary requests or allergies, you’ll need to sit this one out.  However, we promise we will be back mid-2021 with a menu to make your tummy rumble.

What are the dates and times?

Dinner 7-10pm:

Saturday 3rd March

Thursday 15th April / Thursday 22nd April/ Friday 23rd April 

The following dates are sold out:

Thursday 25th February / Friday 26th February / Saturday 27th February

Thursday 4 March / Friday 5th March / Saturday 6th March

Thursday 11 March / Friday 12th March / Saturday 13th March 

Thursday 18 March / Friday 19th March 

Thursday 25 March / Friday 26th March / Saturday 27th March

Thursday 8th April/ Friday 9th April /Saturday 10th April /Saturday 17th April

How much?

Tickets are $149pp and include six courses plus a welcome cocktail or mocktail. There is also the option for a two glass wine match or non-alcoholic drinks match, both $29 or four glass wine match ($49).

Who is it for?

Wild-at-heart foodies on the hunt for a ‘big city’ style food adventure. Think the intimacy of an East London supper club mixed with the gastronomy of a top Melbourne laneway eatery and the creativity of a Copenhagen restaurant.

What will you eat?

On your plate will be all the classic foods – meat, fish, dairy and sugar. We can cater for gluten free and pescatarian but if you have any other dietary requirements like vegan or vegetarian, you’ll have to sit this one out. We will have a pop-up in June/July which can cater to your requirements.

Who is designing the mouth watering menu?

Masterchef winners Karena and Kasey have travelled to over 50 destinations across the globe learning about food and culture whilst also being involved with a number of food events and activations throughout New Zealand. They have hosted two seasons of the award-winning series on TVNZ1 “Karena and Kasey’s Kitchen Diplomacy” which saw them travel to a new overseas destination each episode. 

Our local superstars have also cooked for a number of NZ dignitaries and celebration events around the world including the NZ consulate Shanghai, ANZAC celebrations Los Angeles, NZ Embassy Jakarta Indonesia, NZ Embassy Italy, NZ Embassy Korea, Gary Player ‘Support our kids’ charity auction Japan, NZ Consulate General New Caledonia and the NZ Embassy Chile. 

Kasey and Karena have been the food editors for Mana magazine and also food contributors for the Herald on Sunday. They have also self-published two award winning cookbooks “For the Love of…” & “Hungry”.

How does it work?

The set menu will be announced when you arrive. Depending on the size of you group, diners will be seated communally to meet their undiscovered foodie friends. However if we are in Level 2 you will be seated separately. 

Where and when will it be?

A secret location in Tauranga. You will be messaged one hour before the event. 

What happens if the event is unable to go ahead due to COVID-19?

We will postpone it to a later date. If you are unable to make this date we will offer an alternative date or a refund

What is the cost?

A six-course degustation dining ticket is $149 per person plus a small booking fee. 10% goes to charity to offer literacy support to underprivileged children in New Zealand schools.


Get in touch with Founder and Foodie, Stacey Jones at Kitchen Takeover on 022 369 8334.

Foodie Reviews

” This was the most amazing experience. The food was sooooo good I cannot even begin to describe in words as well as the flavours and the presentation. Sign me up for the next one!”

Kim Raubenheimer

“Kitchen Takeover made me feel like I was living in Melbourne, or Wellington or even New York. Like a glorious local secret, with the added advantage of getting to meet lovely, like-minded folks.”

Rosie Dawson Hewes

“This was an incredible taste sensation, perfect food, perfect setting and perfect company.  I can’t wait for the next one! Somehow i think it’s going to be tough to get a seat next time around.”

Kirstin Mead

looking for the perfect foodie gift?

Kitchen Takeover has teamed up with Best of the Bay to offer two exciting gift boxes that showcase the best food of their sunny region. Introducing the ‘Brave Foodie Box’ & the ‘Handmade Hamper Box’. 

Each gift box comes with mouth-watering recipe cards from the Kitchen Takeover team and tells you all about the local artisans featured inside. We only have 50 limited edition gift boxes so be quick and bring the foodie in your life ladlefuls of joy this Christmas.