A New Vegetarian Modern-Asian Eatery Is In Town

East is Auckland’s newest hot spot for foodies. An innovative new vegetarian restaurant in the heart of Auckland.

East’s menu is a concise edit of inventive dishes all designed to share: Peking jackfruit pancakes, tapioca chips and plum sauce, caramelised black pepper tofu, shallots, garlic and gai laan, East gado gado, long bean, chioggia beetroot, spinach, tempeh and soft eff, and typhoon shelter fried rice with corn, asparagus and burnt garlic.

The chefs at East represent culinary traditions from Japan, Hong Kong, China, Thailand, India and Sri Lanka, led by Harmeet Singh.

Singh is looking forward to showcasing the skills he developed as head chef at Bamboo – one of Mumbai’s leading Asian restaurants.

“I’m excited to not only be cooking regional Asian flavours, but to be applying them to plant-focused, vegetarian and vegan cooking. We have been experimenting, developing and embracing techniques, including fermentation. We’ve created our own sauces, including prik nam pla, nahm jim, chili oil and a vegan ‘XO’ sauce (featuring shitake mushrooms and using a special process to achieve texture and flavour) inhouse. The result is a menu that has depth without relying on meat and that celebrates the piquant, sour, sweet and umami of the Asian flavour profile,” said Singh.

75 percent of the dishes on offer are vegan, and 70 percent are gluten free. East will also be one of the few restaurants in New Zealand to have an extensive 100 percent organic and vegan wine list that features New Zealand and Italian vintages.

If cocktails are more you thing, the drinks menu offers a bespoke range of pan-Asian drinks, including an Omo Sake, a Shochu Sesame Sour, and Nang Pimm.

East is a passion project for its vegetarian owners. The restaurant is on the ground floor of the new Sudima Hotel in Nelson Street.

“We love the vegetarian palate in Asia, where flavours are bold and vibrant, and we are committed vegetarians,” said Kanika Jhunjhnuwala, who oversees the sustainability front of the business.

The ethos behind East is high impact on taste and low impact on the environment, so we’ve created a menu and a space that focuses on sustainable, health-conscious dining, while providing a stylish and delicious dining experience.

East also features award-winning architecture by Luchetti Krelle and interior design by Longrain in Tokyo and Acme in Sydney.