Current Media Release

For immediate release
11 September 2018


Take a seat at Matakana’s Village Table

Renowned food writers, artists, chefs and even a former All Black feature in a new book celebrating the food and people of the Matakana region, a destination of choice for many of Auckland’s foodies.  

The Village Table features mouth-watering dishes, stunning photography and entertaining tales from many of the characters that give the area such heart.  

The two-year project was produced by a team of talented volunteers and directed by award-winning film producer Peter Young, with initial plans for a simple community cookbook soon morphing into a much larger undertaking.  ‘We wanted to invite readers into the heart of our Matakana community,’ says Peter. ‘There were so many incredible foodies, artisans and producers with stories waiting to be told.’

Local author Christine Sheehy led a team of writers who gathered over 40 stories celebrating the likes of international food writer Lauraine Jacobs and chef Amber Rose; Kirsty McKay and Mike Sutherland of the Sawmill Brewery; Christine Didsbury, co-founder of the Matakana Village Farmers’ Market and Brick Bay Winery; Dan O’Donnell formerly of Prego and founder of local institution Jin Jin; renowned permaculturist Trish Allen; and former All Black, Richard Turner.

‘The passion and vision behind the Matakana food scene is so inspiring,’ says Christine. ‘It was a privilege to share these untold stories of a place that is special to so many.’

Also among the team was photographer and designer Lori Satterthwaite, food editor Emily Parker, food stylist Kate Arbuthnot, artist and photographer Katherine Norman, with favorite recipes submitted by school parents and members of the Matakana community.

Alongside the stunning beaches and rural vistas, the region attracts visitors year-round to the famous Matakana Village Farmers’ Market, and world-class restaurants, wineries and galleries just one hour north of Auckland.

The Village Table will be released on 29 September 2018 as part of Feast Matakana, a three-week event series celebrating the food and beverages of the Matakana region. There are lunches hosted by celebrity chefs, themed dinners at local restaurants, a chance to meet food artisans on Feast Tours, and the annual Oyster & Wine Festival Matakana.

The Village Table will be available for purchase at the Matakana Village Farmers’ Market, select retail outlets and online at  All proceeds go towards the local primary school.

Like many projects, it became bigger than we ever imagined, but we’re very proud of the result,’ says Peter. ‘We hope we have cast a window on our region and created a lasting legacy made by the community, with the community and for the community.


The Village Table
RRP $49

To download images please visit

Peter Young
Project director
[email protected]
027 221 1606

Christine Sheehy
Story editor
[email protected]
021 0200 9595

For more information on Feast Matakana please visit or contact Nadia Els, [email protected] or 021 105 1219



It Takes a Village

Article published in the NZ Listener, 15 September, by Lauraine Jacobs.

Read about Feast Matakana and our cookbook in Lauraine’s article in the NZ Listener.

The book has recipes from local families, growers and artisans as well as intriguing previously untold stories, including one about a local vegetable-swap group who meet each week to exchange surplus fare from their gardens, and another about a regular shared-plate dinner for retirees in the tiny Point Wells community…

…Surrounding countryside, beaches and farms, alongside portraits of food and community heroes, this book is a visual delight.

Each chapter is about a different “village table” – places where the Matakana community comes together to share food and friendship.”