Sunday Painters

3 star rating 24 reviews

Restaurant location map

09 3602001

185 Ponsonby Road, Ponsonby, Auckland

5:30 PM to 9:30 PM (Tue-Thu), 12 Noon to 2 PM, 5:30 PM to 11 PM (Fri-Sun), Mon Closed


Reviews for Sunday Painters

4 star rating
by WeiTing Ashley Shyu
2 months ago

I had a GrabOne voucher for two when I dined here. The wine, the food, the staff all contributed to a beautiful evening. I'm a little surprised at the reviews because when I came here last year, the place was as clean as ever! I didn't see any fruit flies. The place was cute, quaint and cosy.

3 star rating
by RH
5 months ago

We dined in a group.

On the downside there were fruit flies hovering near us all night, the wait staff were not great - we had to continuously fight for their attention to get drinks, one starter came before the rest, they took a long time to take our orders etc.

On the positive side the food did taste good, so overall it was an enjoyable experience and if they deal to the fruit flies we would return.

4 star rating
by Missk Khan
7 months ago

Came here for date night with hubby. The waiters were polite and cute, the accents gorgeous! The place is so dainty, tucked away in the corner of Franklin and Ponsonby.
We had an early booking so the place was empty but steadily filled to capacity. The food was great. Hubby's beet root starter was both startling to look at and delicious. His fish main was also the best fish dish I have had in a long time.
My steak was very good. The asparagus with cream was not well done, overlooked and very stringy. Desserts wee a mixed bag. Well presented but the cinnamon panacotta was gritty with the ground cinnamon, which is not quite the texture you would expect.
All in all, I quite liked this place. Friendly, good ambience and service. Give this a go.

2 star rating
by Eli A
7 months ago

Another wanna-be fancy French restaurant which does not live up to expectations. First of all, the staff should be hired to reflect the image they wish to portray, this was not the case. There were fruit flies and ants on the dining tables. The food tried to be different but ended up being bland. I ordered the lamb shank, and one side of it was chewy so I couldn't finish. When I told the wait staff, she just said "I'll let the kitchen know." When we were paying, I noticed that they had coat check but nobody offered to take our coats. Which I am glad of, as the coats would have been hanging in the kitchen!!!! And another meh experience.

4 star rating
by Ali Lousley Guild
7 months ago

We were concerned about the feedback but decided to give this restaurant a go because the food had received consistently good reviews. And that was the case - the dishes were presented beautifully and tasted equally as good. However the service was so hit and miss - the lovely front of house staff were either under staffed or under trained. Both in my opinion.

4 star rating
by Jay Shaw
Oct 14, 2014

Nice place :)

My partner and I got a 'grabone' voucher which we used for dinner on a Thursday. Staff were really pleasant and we got a complimentary appetizer which was tasty. Food overall started great but slowly slipped away from us. Both entree's were amazing! (Butternut Soup & Savoury Tartelette). Mains were nice (Fish of The Day & Beef Sirloin). For desserts I had the Chai Panna Cotta and Rhubarb which had an extreme cinnamon taste to it (that left a fuzzy taste in my mouth for the night) and my partner had the Chocolate and Peanut Butter Mousse which was a bit too heavy. The ambiance was really nice and comfy. I would eat there again but it no big deal if I didn't.

2 star rating
by Kelly Wu
Sep 27, 2014

I dropped by on my own, luckily, because I will be embarrassed if I take my friend there.

The quality of the food is appalling, the service is slow, waited for half an hour for my dish to come, and not to mention its half raw, waited for another 10.p minutes to get it fully cooked.

The price is too high comparing with the small portion and the taste.

 I woundnt recommend others to try.

4 star rating
by FlyingMonkey
Aug 30, 2014

A lovely restaurant even for a rainy day. Good atmosphere, music and backdrop made it very romantic for dates. We ordered a pasta of the day and Castelnaudary Cassoulet (pork belly, duck and sausage with lots of beans). Both dish were very nice and we were satisfied with the food and the overall services. I will recommend it to my friends.

4 star rating
by Captain
Jul 19, 2014

Went here with a group of 6, the staff were great fun, everyone really enjoyed the food, worth trying if you want a relaxed evening with nice food.

4 star rating
by Arietta @ KJAS Blog
Jul 01, 2014

Sunday Painters is a very quaint cosy restaurant perfect for a date. The decorations sort of evoke a vintage kitsch feel, no doubt inspired a lot by their next door neighbours Andrea Moore. I especially liked the pastel eggs on the mint stand and the flickering tealights. For exquisite French cuisine, this is a great place. The food was genuinely the highlight, even if the prices are slightly steep, for the Table D'hote especially. But I'll get to that later.

I was super late because of traffic, but they seemed fine with it when we called apologetically beforehand and by the time I arrived (one hour late for my booking) on an incredibly stormy Wednesday night with the boyfriend, I realised why they were so calm. There was nobody there. I guess maybe because of the weather, or because it was a Wednesday, but we had the entire restaurant to ourselves. They're probably more busy if they highly recommend reservations are made, but I was kind of surprised by that.

Service was excellent and attentive (as you'd expect if you're the only ones in the entire establishment). We got the menus straight away as well as glasses of refreshing lemon water. Any place that serves lemon water makes me a little happy already. I like the stuff. The waitress was perfect in how she knew when to come round and when to leave us be as well as refilling our glasses and removing utensils we wouldn't need for the next course and everything was very smoothly done and the staff clearly well trained. I was definitely impressed, and I think it's one of the reasons it's a great place to take someone on a date.

The highlight, however, has to be the food. The veal rump with the pomme dauphine and pesto and wild mushroom was exquisite. The veal was cooked so well and not tough at all; I almost mistook it for some very tender beef. The pomme dauphine was my favourite part of the dish, with the outsides crispy golden and the insides aromatic and melt-in-your-mouth creamy.

The main I chose was the Ratatouille Goats Cheese Roulade in a roast tomato sauce with long beans and a bunch of tomatoes boiled and on their stalks still. It was like a Swiss roll of egg around salad. A very moist vegetably and again melt-in-your-mouth Swiss roll. I really liked it. Savoury egg dishes are always very good, and the combination of tart tomato, eggplant, goats cheese and other stewed vegetables really made it a sumptuous dish. The beans were cooked to perfection and had soaked up all of the sauce. Speaking of which, the sauce is amazing. I was spooning at it long after I finished the dish, and that's very unusual for me because I generally don't like sauces, but this soupy roast tomato eggy sauce was amazing. I tried nibbling on the tomato stalks out of curiosity, but they had been roasted until very dry and it was impossible. The roulade was my favourite dish and I think probably the best vegetable roulade I've had ever. Even if your date is vegetarian, there are some very good options here for them.

Dessert was Gateau au Chocolate with a swirl of creme chantilly, droplets of raspberry syrup and a thin sliver of caramelised sugar. The cake is very rich, so if you don't like extremely dark chocolate you might want to give this a miss. I like dark chocolate, so it was absolutely delicious and I appreciated the large chunkiness of the cake. No skimping on size here at all. The cakes outsides are a slightly chewy layer dusted with copious amounts of icing sugar. It was good, but very very rich. I didn't like the raspberry syrup because it tasted kind of fake, like sugary jam, but the creme chantilly did add a nice texture and dimension of flavour to the cake. This isn't a cake to gobble down, but one to savour slowly.

My only minor disappointment was that when it came to the bill the staff asked if we were paying for the dishes as if ordered as a set 2-course in the Table D'hote menu (and I just said yes because usually that's cheaper because you're forced to order at least two dishes and from a limited selection) but I go home and look it up and it actually would have been significantly cheaper if we'd ordered and paid for the same dishes as if from the A La Carte menu. Whoops. My recommendation would definitely be avoid the Table D'hote menu as it usually is the same price if not more than ordering the dishes separately from the A La Carte menu, and you're way more restricted in selection. It was my fault for not being more onto it, but my menu also didn't have an A La Carte desserts page and I wanted dessert so....foolish me. Very unusual for Table D'hote not to be a better deal, but now I'll be more wary of prices between the two in restaurants in future, haha.

Still, price is worth it for such good quality, but it's not a 5.0 rating just yet for me. The chef is supremely talented. Thanks Yatchi from Zomato for referring me to this place! Nom nom nom.

4 star rating
by Melissa Ruby Tuesday
Jun 29, 2014

With great anticipation, I was looking forward to visiting 'Sunday Painters' for some French cuisine.
On arrival, the restaurant was half-full. The furniture was all mis-matched, free-style painted walls with (small) Picasso prints hanging on the wall, all randomly-placed. It felt instantly kitsch. I waited for a while for a menu... so just went and asked for one in the end, after 10mins. Oops. The service was rather slow, however the food and friendliness of the staff won me over. I decided on the 'Castelnaudary Cassoulet': White beans, duck confit, pork belly and sausage, accompanied with a glass of NZ Kumeu River Pinot noir. There was a great wine list on offer including some good French Merlots, however I went with my Pinot favourite. My friend had 'fish of the day' which was Tarakihi, absolutely beautiful. My cassoulet was nicely flavoured, with a lovely marriage of meats. I did not want to over do it with ordering dessert - next time! If you are in hurry, maybe go elsewhere. However, it is an intimate, romantic restaurant with dimmed lighting - with lots of people/couples enjoying there dining experience when I was there...lovely!

2 star rating
by Jason Kennedy
May 13, 2014

I had been here a couple of years ago and it was great. I again went on Friday night for a spur of the moment meal. I didn't think we would get in but there were only a few tables busy (warning bells).

The food was pretty average and the service considering the place was nearly empty was poor, no wine top up and water glass empty for 15mins.

I won't be going back.

5 star rating
by VerenaM
Apr 11, 2014

Such a lovely restaurant!
I had a great visit with my boyfriend last night in the Sunday Painters. It is just perfect for a candle light dinner, has music of vinyls and lovely drawings on the wall. Although the menu was small, we could definitely find something we like. We both had the onion soup as an entry which was very nice and hot. As a main, my partner ordered the oxtail which looked just like a ball of meat, but he said he liked it and it was really soft. I had the vegetarian Ratatouille Roulade which came with an amazing sauce. As a dessert, we had the Gateau au Chocolate and the Passionfruit Soufflé which was really amazing. We felt very full after the meal but satisfied.
I think the restaurant is a perfect place for a romantic dinner, it's quite, has nice music and u can be for yourself. I really loved it and we will soon come back!

2 star rating
by Steve
Apr 02, 2014

Been here several times before, and loved it. Tonight we went and similar to other recent reviews, not so good. Food poorly seasoned, not very special at all. The waitress never asked if everything was ok until we paid the bill, when we told her what we thought. Couldn't attract her attention to get a second glass of wine.
Waitress explained it had changed owners which probably explains a lot.
We won't be rushing back which is a shame as we like the ambience of Sunday Painters.

2 star rating
by Peppermint
Mar 29, 2014

Food was very average and service was poor. No smile, never bothered to ask about how our meals were.

3 star rating
by Birdy
Dec 29, 2013

Great food. I had fish of the day and it really was nice. Used the room upstairs and it really would make a big difference if they installed an air conditioning unit as it gets quite hot and stuffy up there in summer. This would make the dining experience so much more relaxing. Service was good as well.

3 star rating
by Dee
Oct 21, 2013

We dined using a deal voucher for entree, main and dessert, which made this excellent value. The decor is rustic with charming touches such as candles and fresh flowers on each table. There is a great wine list including as you'd expect, French wines (just as well because corkage is $25 a bottle - luckily we realised that beforehand!) The service was efficient but a little on the brusque side; a smile would not have gone amiss and it is disconcerting to be told 'yes' each time you place your order, as if to suggest yes you may have that. The house-made charcuterie plate with bread and preserves was an unusual and exceptional entree. The duck main was superb, whereas the scotch fillet so-so; it came medium rare instead of the requested rare, and would benefit from being served with potatoes rather than onions which added nothing to the dish. Dessert was also mixed - the house-made licorice ice cream was wonderful but the raspberry sorbet had a huge lump of ice at its core, and serving the trio on a dinner plate so they slid around and made it difficult to get on your spoon was just baffling. Overall though a good experience, for me it stopped short on this occasion of being very good hence the rating though I would give it 3 1/2 stars if that was an option.

3 star rating
by James Holliday
Aug 25, 2013

Big group! Service was average. Food was good.Octopus and chorizo... Spectacular. Mains very average. Duck was disappointing. Coffee and cheeseboard very good. We found it expensive.

2 star rating
by Silvestrito
Aug 21, 2013

I celebrated my birthday here. We were a table of 16 and ordered wine, starters and mains. The place is loud and even though they have a small menu the quality varies. The fish was excellent but the beef was terrible.
What really upset me is that at the time of desserts I did not order, because I knew my husband would ask for a cake and candle. A creme brûlée came with a candle which I blew. As I was preparing to take a bite the waitress came and told me that dessert wasn't mine because I didn't ask for anything, then she gave the dessert to a friend who was sitting next to me. We both could not believe it. Thank God my friend is very close and she didn't mind having a dessert which took my candle and breath...
It is an expensive restaurant we paid over $1000 and I still can't believe they would not be able to give away a dessert.
Very disappointed!

5 star rating
by George
Aug 15, 2013

We came here with a group of artisan food producers and we all loved it. We had a great night, the service is attentive and the décor enviable and its like sitting in a warm loving dining room at a friends place! Our meals were divine and we all tasted each others, we had pigs ears, soufflé, duck, pork, fish all delicious, so were the deserts and the menu has plenty of excellent wines.
We have recommended this too many people since our visit, wonderful evening we will be back.

5 star rating
by Reginald
Mar 21, 2013

Best evening out we have had in a long time! The service was splendid - sincere and enthusiastic. The waiter knew his wine (and food) well. The duck was divine, the onion rings a hit! Definitely worth a visit.

4 star rating
by Hannah
Feb 23, 2012

This place was recommended to us, and it was worth the visit. They try something a bit different: pigs' ears and also liquorice creme brulee were on the menu. Strange TV screen in the bathrooms showing one of the waiters with a fake moustache reading romantic poetry in a faux French accent made it more quirky!

4 star rating
by Anna White
Feb 18, 2011

We really enjoyed our meal and the atmosphere was fun with an arty/qwirky feel. Aside from yummy, fresh food we loved eating off NZ Crown Lynn china!

4 star rating
by Dave
Dec 16, 2010

A fun, lively and simple restaurant for a great night out. Great staff, wines are good and the decor is in French style. Well worth a visit.