Falls Retreat Bistro

We worked up a serious appetite while walking the Karangahake Gorge in the morning and were keen to discover the old railway station converted into a cafe for our lunch – specially for our visitor, Spence, whose lifelong interests have included railways. I think the railway station cafe may have been the information centre straight across the road from the carpark. Imagining a building that captured the romance and charm of a bygone era, we failed to notice what was right in front of our eyes and set off in the car on a railway cafe hunt. In the process, we happened upon the Falls Retreat Bistro in Waikino,  a few kilometres up the road from Karangahake Gorge. Up a tree-lined drive and into an ample carpark. This was the shady summer lunch spot of our dreams.

I was intrigued by the gingerbread house cafe with its tacked on kitchen, lined with saucepans, where we could watch the chef cooking our pizza order in the woodfired stove.

I was intrigued by the gingerbread house cafe.

We watched the chef at work, stoking up the fire for our pizza order.

Iggy watched the chef at work, stoking up the fire for his pizza order.

We cleaned up the  dips that came with a fresh, whole, small loaf of warm bread.

We cleaned up the olives and dips that came with a fresh, whole, small loaf of warm bread.

I couldn't help myself. I nicked a slice of Iggy's meatlovers' pizza. He really wouldn't have managed all that pizza by himself, would he?

I couldn’t help myself. I nicked a slice of Iggy’s meatlovers’ pizza. He really wouldn’t have managed all that pizza by himself, would he?

My salmon on potato mash was also a generous serving and absolutely delicious

My salmon on potato mash was also a generous serving and absolutely delicious.

We had a great waitress, all the way from Scotland, who provided just the right level of friendliness and service. The frequently topped up water was especially welcome.

Top marks for having an exciting place for the ankle biters to entertain themselves while the family enjoys a leisurely lunch.

Top marks to Falls Retreat Bistro for having an exciting place for the ankle biters to entertain themselves while families enjoy a leisurely lunch.

Well rested and refuelled, we set off for our afternoon Karangahake adventure. That’s a whole new post …

 
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2 thoughts on “Falls Retreat Bistro

  1. Ana says:

    Gosh! Another great place to visit. You know how to find them!

    • Kiwicommunicator says:

      I have to confess – I didn’t know where to find this one! Linda spotted the signage indicating that there were refreshments up a side road and the Falls Retreat Bistro was at the end of the trail. Absolutely fantastic.

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