Riverstone Kitchen was established by Bevan and Monique Smith in November 2006. Built in a paddock on the family farm, 15 minutes north of Oamaru in North Otago, it has defied all odds and achieved huge success. In 2010, Riverstone Kitchen was the supreme winner of Cuisine magazine’s coveted Restaurant of the Year award and put its name firmly on the map!
Bevan was born in Northland, New Zealand and left the family farm in 1991 to train as a chef in Christchurch. After working for several years in London at Terence Conran’s La Pont de la Tour and Michael Caine’s Canteen, Bevan moved to Australia where he became head chef at Philip Johnson’s acclaimed ècco bistro.
Monique was born in Zimbabwe and moved, with her family, to Australia where she gained a degree in opera and managed a successful music business. Her passion for food and hospitality began after meeting Bevan in Brisbane and together, they came to New Zealand in 2004 to plan and build their restaurant.
Bevan and Monique believe that the same high standards recognized in first-class restaurants can and should, be utilized anywhere in the world. They endeavour to use that approach in all aspects of Riverstone Kitchen and with this philosophy, their reputation continues to grow. Bevan strongly believes in cooking with only the freshest and best seasonal ingredients and is passionate about local product and ethically produced food.
In 2011 their first book Riverstone Kitchen – Recipes from a Chef’s Garden was published by HarperCollins and their second book Riverstone Kitchen – Simple was launched the year following. Bevan also contributes regularly to the NZ Herald and the Otago Daily Times.