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What can I say!!!
The best food and service you would expect from this very fine restaurant. Been back many times over the years and you Just know what you will get ” THE BEST ” Love this place!! Ciao Rick and Sina.
I have to say, my first impressions of this restaurant were not very good. My group and I arrived for my Uncle’s birthday. My grandfather was with us, and he needs a walker to get around. Unfortunately, there is no elevator up to the restaurant, only stairs. For someone waiting on a hip replacement, this restaurant is a no-go. It seems like the building is not compliant.
When we were seated, we were each given a food menu, but there was only one drinks menu for seven people. Our food was delicious, except for the squid being really chewy. However the meals were a good size and the food was well presented.
The service was great for the most part, but between our mains and dessert we wanted another drink. We got a drinks menu, but no one came to take our order. We had to flag down a waiter and ask him.
It was really hot inside the restaurant, so much so that the staff were sweating. One guy had sweat stains on his shirt, and sweat running down his face. Not a pretty sight, and not what you’d expect from a supposed 5-star restaurant.
Excellent! cant fault a thing
*Food was amazing,
(traditional with a twist, really enjoyed the john dory on spanner crab, sweetcorn and faro; my partners lamb was nicely done as well, did not seem as it died of old age hehe )
*Staff was attentive without been annoying
*Great views of the harbor and beautiful ambiance.
Definitely will be back
1st visit to Sails and only visit i am sad to say. This restaurant was picked for our end of year Christmas dinner. Not the best environment we have been over the years and we do go to fine dining restaurants. Meals were lovely compliments to the chef, however the wait on staff let it down.
We asked a politely waiter would he mind taking a group picture, in which he said yes not in a happy manor (we were seated for 8pm so not huge rush dinner time) he does have 100 other ppl to look after u know!!
My husband is waiting to have a knee op and found the stairs hard to go to bathroom, at one stage is knee gave way at top of stairs only to have a comment of the tall Basil Faulty look a like, hahaha did u enjoy ur trip!! He couldnt respond by the time he composed himself he was gone!!! No manners!!
They top your water glasses up without asking would you like a top up, so much so a friends soda water was washed away with still water, which was exchanged with the disgust look from Basil Faulty
I can see why alot of people use vouchers, I wouldnt say its worth going out of your way for.
Such as shame, the ambience was missing, my boss said they were greeted on entrance and then it all went to pot!! We didnt even get greeted….. Sorry cant recommend
We’ve been to Sails Restaurant many times and it still remains my favourite restaurant. The food is 5-star, the service is excellent, the ambience is so relaxing, and they have the best view in Auckland!
We recently tried a voucher deal at Sails and the standards remained as high as we’d expect from this restaurant. The only teeny complaint we have was the difficulty in getting a date to redeem the coupon – dates were restricted to Sun-Thu dinner, or Mon-Fri lunch. My partner and I have no problems going to dinner on a ‘school night’, but it meant that we only bought a deal voucher for 2 people, as it would have been far too difficult to coordinate our group of friends given we couldn’t book a Fri or Sat. Other than that, an excellent night!
We came here with a voucher for a three course meal as a group of 10 for my graduation dinner on the 27th September and it was simply superb! There was absolutely no doubt that we got served to the same standard as those paying full price.
Every one on the table expressed how impressed they were, with audible “oohs” and “aahs” heard every time a new dish was served. Despite having a set menu with the voucher, there is nothing on there I wouldn’t want to try at least once (or again)…
Service was super friendly and professional. Nothing was too much for them. Wonderful people!
Reasonably priced drinks to top off the night made it absolutely perfect. Sails will certainly be my first pick (and that of my other table guests) for any special occasions in the future – I cannot rave about this place enough!
Very friendly staff who had personality and went the extra mile to promptly cater to our many requests such as finding out how certain meals were prepared, water refills, showing us the bottles our drinks were from… The place had a very sleek and calm atmosphere… Now the food! We went during lunch time, and this menu is stunning!It is all so flavoursome with the perfect proportions, I cannot wait to go back!
Went here on Friday night and used a deal voucher.
We greeted very pleasantly by the staff. The service was excellent. The entree mains and Dessert was very very good. Portion size was great even though we used the voucher. Presentation and deco was excellent too. Super views.
We went here for my boy friend’s birthday. I understand it was a busy night, however it ruined our night, there was a piece of green thing (possibly some veges) on the glass of the water they provided to me. This is very unsatisfactory in a fine dining restaurant.
The food is above average, good views.
Too pricey for the service we received.
Have been here for work function and decided to celebrate my birthday here with group of girls.
Everyones dietary preference was catered for and the chef has created some fantastic meals.
Service was the best and even though we aren’t the richest people in town but were made to feel a million dollars with the waiter martin keeping us entertained and hydrated.
Will definitely be coming back to experience the great team
We grabbed an online voucher… seemed like a very good deal, however the was an element of apprehension as we weren’t sure half price would equal half the quality and half the service. We’d been stung at other venues previously.
Never having been to Sails before we were pleasantly surprised.
We had 3 different wait staff across the evening – they were lovely, chatty and very prompt and attentive – esp. when my wine glass level dipped.
The food was beautiful – lovely flavours across all 4 courses.
A very lovely way to spend our anniversary.
Will definitely be going back to experience the full price version!
Thanks team for a great evening.
It’s very hard to go wrong with Sails. We’ve been here a number of times over the years and will continue to do so – very little ever goes wrong. I don’t know how the standards are able to be kept so consistently high, but as long as they are, we’ll continue to enjoy the results.
My experience of Sails was very much a bittersweet one…
The food was amazing! The flavours that came out of that kitchen were fresh, well seasoned and well portioned! On the other hand, the service we received very much dampened our evening and overall it was a below average restaurant service. We went to Sails with a 5 course degustation voucher deal and as I understand it, the goal of a business when it lists their service on deal sites is so that people can go and experience all that they had to offer with the possibility of future re-visits. Our waiter seemed like he had had a very bad day; we were greeted with a brief nod (no greetings or welcomes) and presented the a la carte menu. We reminded him that we are here for the degustation, at which point he begrudgingly went back to the counter to get the correct menu. When our order arrived, every time the waiter walked past or behind my chair, he would knock it. I’m not normally fussy about this kind of thing, but after the eighth time with no apology, I was starting to get annoyed. We did not receive our tea and coffee at the end of our meal, and we didn’t want to ask as the service was so poor that we had no intention of staying any longer. Overall, the food was great, but in my mind it does not make up for the unprofessional service. We will probably not be going back there as there are many many other restaurants with equally amazing food and much better service.
Used a voucher here and it was fantastic. Home made bread and butter and an amuse bouche of fish tartare which was fantastic.
Was very pleased at the generous number of bluffies given as the entree. I had 6 and the next time we dined there I had 3 pacific and 3 bluff. Fantastic.
The main courses are generous portions and delicious. The steak and chicken were well cooked.
The cheese board was a nice selection and chocolate fondant was equally as yummy.
Had a fantastic experience here and was very happy I was given the chance to dine there again. Definitely will dine for a third time!
We went to Sails for lunch using a voucher deal with a 3rd person ordering from the menu. It was our second time there, the food was generously portioned and amazingly tasty, we loved every single dish from entree to desert. Our waiter was friendly and very professional. The view was gorgeous on a sunny day. Many car parks available making it convenient to drive in. We all had an amazing time and cannot wait to go back again!
We went to Sails Restaurant last night for the first time, using a deal voucher. The food was great and the service amazing.
We chose Sails for a special celebration for 8 people based on previous happy experiences . Once again the service was impeccable and the food was innovative ,beautifully presented and delicious . The views as sunset turns to dusk are wonderful
The acoustics which are the achilles heel of many restaurants are excellent at Sails, making conversation a relaxing experience even on a night when every seat in the restaurant was taken, as was the case on the night we were there
This restaurant fully delivers on its promise in professional but personable way
Our out of town guests are still buzzing
Heard a lot about Sails from friends who had their company dinner there so had to try it for ourselves. It has an altogether cozy romantic air to the place. It must have been a busy night for the wait staff as we waited for a good 15minutes before anyone came to take our order and waited a further half an hour almost before our food arrived. Still.. we had some complimentary house baked bread to nibble on which was really good. My pan cooked fish was delightfully fresh and delicious. Hubby’s steak dish though was average… There was two fillets presented, one done perfectly and the other overcooked. The chocolate dessert was flawless. So many plus points to the restaurant but few key details like waiting time and inconsistent food preparation prevents me from giving a perfect score..
We came here on a degustation voucher deal for a Friday lunch in September and I cant speak more highly of everything. Everything from service, to scenery, to food taste and presentation was 100%. I couldn’t fault anything, and it would be the nicest meal I have had.
It’s funny how people view things differently, as we had the same degustation menu as “Kerensa R” (see their rating below), yet we did get a window table (perhaps because it was lunch rather than dinner?) and we thought all the food matches were perfect. Even though each course was small, we left the restaurant having eaten sufficient, certainly weren’t hungry and didn’t feel bulging – just right!
Can’t wait for another degustation deal, as I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase again.
Beautiful flavours coming out of this kitchen. Loved the beetroots juxtaposed with feta, caramelized(?)walnut, and other scrumptious natural seasonings in my entree.
Gorgeous views out across the marina (floor to ceiling windows), and to the Harbour Bridge, Bayswater and beyond.
I noticed the excellent acoustics of the sloping ceiling make it easy to converse even in the packed-out restaurant.
Impeccable service by very professional and unobtrusive wait-staff.
Went here on a deal voucher, but the deal is fraudulent. They clearly had a separate menu for the price, but it wasn’t good value!
Firstly, the service on the phone was rude. While the service by our waiter was good, the voucher meant you didn’t get to sit by the window even on a slow night. Since the view is the best feature, it lost something.
Secondly, the food was variable in quality, and some of the dishes just didn’t work.
The lobster bisque was lovely, but there was no bread. We were charged extra for hard, chewy, overcooked bread rolls.
The salmon dish was awful. They paired raw marinated salmon with lime sorbet, and it did not go. The lime sorbet was nice, but should have been served separately as an amuse bouche.
The duck was lovely, but no vegetables so we were grateful we didn’t order the matched wine, as we would not have been able to eat it without something other than protein in our stomach.
The lamb was nice, but hardly any vegetables.
The dessert was very mediocre. Given that I like chocolate mousse, I expect more for the price than a very ordinary mousse in a tiny serving.
I think they pigeon-hole you as a voucher customer, and assume you will not be back, However, they are right in one respect – I will not be back for pretentious service backed up with mediocre food and poor decor. I eat out every week, but give this one a miss!
Definitely one to try! Been here twice now, once paying full price and another on a degustation menu voucher. What I love is that even though paying by voucher, they didn’t let the standards slip. Each dish was carefully crafted to look great aesthetically and tasted even better. I had been put off goats cheese from another place but sails had restored my faith lol! Both visits have had very fond memories and needless to say I will definitely be back!
After hearing a lot about this restaurant from many friends over the years, I had the opportunity to go for a working lunch. The view was breathtaking but the decor a little dated which I was not expecting.
The service was a little off (the waiters were attentive but a little slow) but the food was, of course, amazing.
Everything was mouthwatering – from the complimentary canape (salmon, wasabi, orange and I think a powdered mozzarella) to the beetroot & feta side salad. I had the sashimi to start (no salmon, which I found interesting) and then had the terakihi with lemon gnocchi. I couldn’t go past the truffle fries either. One thing I noted that was a little surprising for such a high end seafood restaurant though, was there was no tuna steak on the menu.
The most interesting part of the meal however, was the clientele to watch; we had a bride in her puffy dress at the next table, there were woman with rocks the size of their launches (I’m sure) and then quite a few businessmen who didn’t really look like they were talking much business in between mouthfuls of wine.
Sails was a fantastic working week treat for a few hours. I’m just glad/lucky I didn’t see the bill after monitoring the orders on the table. I will go back I’m sure, but for a special occasion.
We visited Sails for the first time last night. The food itself was fantastic, but the service from one of the waiters marred the evening somewhat.
When we first arrived, we ordered a bottle of wine, and things seemed to be going well. The service from the waiter (sommelier?) who brought the wine was warm and friendly. However, no one came to take our order for quite some time. A waitress then shot up, dropped two tiny dishes on our table, and pounded off. We were rather surprised, not having ordered yet, but surmised that the dish was a complimentary amuse bouche of some kind (a cheese croquette with a smear of beetroot roullade). We could have clarified with the waitress, but she shot off far too quickly.
A little later she turned up with a salmon dish, and we realised something was obviously amiss. We pointed out that we hadn’t actually ordered yet. She left, and another waiter we hadn’t seen before turned up and tried to drop the same dishes off. We explained again that we hadn’t ordered yet, and he declared in a snooty tone that he had just assumed we’d ordered the degustation menu, since they’d previously dropped off what was apparently its first course. He then twice said “Well, I guess you’ve just got yourself a free course, good for you” in an incredibly arrogant tone – as if we were trying to do something dishonest. This made us feel very uncomfortable.
For the rest of the night this waiter managed to partially suppress his obvious disdain of us sufficiently to actually take our orders and bring our food, and the food was in fact fantastic. The tiger prawns were plump and tender, the scallops crisp and moist, and both fish dishes were excellent. The skin-on tarakahi with gnocchi and crab was particularly good. It’s a bit of a pity when the chef is doing such a great job, that a night can be partially ruined by one of the waitstaff acting like he’s auditioning for the role of “snooty waiter” in a bad Hollywood kids’ movie. We’re unlikely to return.
We’ve been to sails restaurant about three times prior and each time had been enjoyable experience. Writing the review this time based on the voucher deal we got for degustation for two at Sails.
As we’ve never had a degustation dining experience before we weren’t sure what to expect, and our biggest concern was regarding the portion size (from reading degustation @ other places). I can say that this is not a worry at Sails, the portions end up just right (the angus will fill you up) and the dessert wine we decided to have with the baked lemon creme was something I’m missing now as I’m typing this review. The voucher was worth it ($120 for two) and I’d definitely come back @ full price for a special occasion, and possibly with the paired drinks option!
Went with our family for a special birthday dinner. We ordered a range of meals so that we could taste each others. While the portions were not huge so we could only share a bite the food was perfectly prepared and tasty. Service was unobtrusive but attentive. Wine prices a little on the high side but very good. A very enjoyable evening.
Sails needs to make some big changes.
They still seem to be resting on the laurels of their past reputation. The wait staff are cold and businesslike, the food is ordinary and the only thing that sets Sails apart is the location.
We hadn’t been to Sails for a while and took some visitors from overseas, wanting to give them a special treat. However we were embarrassed to find that this former gem has become just another bland restaurant in our absence. What has happened?
We won’t be back in a hurry when there are so many top notch eateries providing consistently high quality food and service. Sails, we have fond memories of good times gone by – but sadly now it is “Sayonara”.
Awesome! Friendly professional waiters, well presented food, great view of the harbour bridge and city. Very happy to recommend this establishment!
We ordered two mains (Kingfish and Hapuka) both cooked beautifully, as well as 2 sides as well. My friend recommended the fries with parmesan and truffle oil – very nice. We also had the beetroot / goats cheese / hazelnut side as well.
My friend requested assistance choosing a wine and our waiter graciously asked another to help. He seemed very knowledgeable and the choice made was a good match.
Will definitely be back again soon
One of the top 5 best fine dining restaurants in Auckland. Dim lighting brings perfect ambiance to celebrate that special occasion. Quality and workmanship of furniture and the interior deco is truly 5 star. A must visit if you enjoy seafood. We had a great experience at Sails, friendly staff and food cooked with lovely European favours. A visit to Sails will never be regretted, does come with price tag but surely worth every cent.
Celebrated New Year at this restaurant. Brilliant service and perfectly presented, delicious food. Worth the little extra cost.
We came to Sails to celebrate our daughters 21st. The set menu was chosen. Our guests were young teenagers to 60 years of age. Every person that night had fantastic service. The food was sublime, every serving, the wine that was suggested was perfect for our dinner and our two younger daughters felt very special from an attentive waiter topping up their sparkling grape juice. We had two tables of guests who were easily able to communicate, we were placed in a private area a wee bit away from other dinners so had a sense of this being all about us…a special feeling. The attention to detail was definately present. We stayed very late and not a sign was made that we had out stayed our welcome. Our family have a life long memory of a very special night out. We feel very priviledged to have been able to celebrate this occasion with such care and attention. Thank you so much to everyone who was part of that evening, July 2nd 2011.
Went to Sails Restaurant after hearing much about its refurbishment. Very disappointed, decore still 1980′s, nothing changed at all. What refurbishment? Clientèle mostly 70yrs plus. Very boring and very formal. Food OK but over priced. Good service. Only good feature is its views, even then you have to look through old joinery which needs replacing.
Super friendly staff! Very helpful and professional, food was delicious, definitely a good place to dress up for and dine!
Good food, perhaps the flavour a bit too home cooking. Good quality oyster, crayfish is lovely. Their produce seem quite fresh. Selection of wine slightly limited, good view but big open room, not the best place for romantic dinner. Nice toilet. Will recommend for corporate functions.
Although the food was excellent, I have to say I was sorely disappointed with the poor service by the waiting staff. I have dined at many other fine restaurants before but have never encountered such cold (almost rude) behavior. I certainly expected more from a top-class restaurant; it would not hurt them to indulge their patrons with some smiles, humor and light-hearted conversation to make the dining experience a truly world-class one.
Went here for our 10th wedding anniversary, and sails delivered. We had a large group, around 10 people. Perfect waiting staff, very helpful with the wine matching.
Main course was ordered and arrived promptly. Heavenly. Desert was brilliant. Great wine selection too!
A bit pricey, but always good for that special occasion.
I have been such a big fan of Sails but sadly my last 3 visits have been dismal. The staff have lost their mojo somehow and the chef his. I was disappointed in their cocktails that they never seem to have all the ingredients for. The wait for food was way too long…30 minutes after ordering for entrees and almost an hour before the mains arrived. No smiles were forthcoming from the service staff and I dont know why that is. These are the same guys that were wonderful once upon a time. We brought friends and had talked up Sails to such an extent that the let down was even more so. I give most things in life 3 lives. Sails just died for me because it was my birthday that will be my last visit.
AND THEY ARE BACK!!!!. WAS THERE FOR A PRIVATE FUNCTION AND HOPEFULLY THIS WAS NOT JUST BECAUSE OF THAT BUT DAMN THE MOJO IS BACK AND I COULDNT BE HAPPIER. NICE FOOD AND THE SERVICE DUDES ARE ENJOYING THEIR JOBS I THINK BUT WELL DONE SAILS. WE HAD A GREAT NIGHT AND THE FOOD…YAY!!!!!! WELCOME ME BACK…
Great views, good food, but disastrous service.
Tired, bored, and unhappy wait staff were thoughout the restaurant. This is supposed to be a ‘high end’ restaurant – certainly the prices are. Go somewhere else, as the service kills a good night.
Beautiful setting and atmosphere. We had the degustation menu with wine pairing and it was excellent. Great range of food and the desserts were delicious! Definitely would go back.
Lunch today at Sails proved a most enjoyable experience. And one of the better ones in recent months.
Starting with the sourdough rolls, well made bread has been with us for several millennium and the joy of fresh bread is one of life’s simple pleasures. Followed by plump oysters, then onto the salmon with scallop ravioli, asparagus and a deliciously flavorsome broth. Finally the chocolate delice with a coffee parfait, this excellent dessert alone was worth going to Sails. The kitchen is working well at Sails. Highly recommended.
If you’re looking for quality seafood, this is the place to go. Bart Littlejohn, the owner and host, does a great job of keeping service top-notch. Very expensive and portion size is a bit lean, but you can expect that at this sort of establishment. This is the place to go if you want to impress. One of Auckland’s better establishments.
Sails has an enviable site and its always a pleasure to go there. I think the food was better last year but its fine but not top class.
Always plenty and the fish is good.
Provided you are close to the windows it’s good venue but further back I would not be so sure
However saying that we will try it again next year
Good meal here at the weekend. Nothing bad to say, but failed to excite my party.
Good but not great.
Sails is one of our favourite restaurant we have been going there for years and its one of those places where, people, service, food is always consistent you defiantly know that you will get great fresh food and professional service.
I wish there were more places like Sails
Went to Sails for the first time last night to celebrate our wedding anniversary. Read some nice reviews so it was a must visit restaurant on our list. As we entered the beauty of the large chandelier caught our eye. It looked so beautiful, the mirrors, views not to be missed. It was a little noisy just past the reception, due to the lounge next to the dining area. But we were greeted and introduced by a fine gentleman who had a great smile. He showed us to our table which was on the other end of the room, pulled the chair for my wife and placed the napkins on our lap. Great service. The view from our table was magnificent. Recommend seating toward the far end near the large mirrors. Nice quite and intimate. I ordered Whitebait for entrée and Grilled prawns for my wife, these were delicious, loved the prawns…for mains we had Pan fried Hapuka and Snapper with snow crab..these were very mouth watering, well cooked and garnished to detail. There was a little delay in getting our meal as the place was a little busy even during a week day so bookings recommended. I wouldn’t say the meal sizes were large and filling, but good enough and we were full at the end of our meal. The staffs were being very friendly and attentive to see if all was going well through out the night. The prices, well it wasn’t that bad if you have been out fine dining, a little expensive but well worth it. With a bottle of white wine, bread, 2 x entrée and 2 x meals we paid around $180.00. Will surely go back again.
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