Lonely Planet Writer

New Myanmar-inspired street food restaurant in Auckland opens where you can only eat with your hands

If you visit one of Auckland’s newest restaurants, you’d better be prepared to get your paws stuck into your food. Honeybear in Ponsonby says it welcomes anyone who “joyfully eats with their hands,” along with those with a fondness for Burmese cuisine, Indian street snacks and nano-brew beers.

You eat with your hands at Auckland restaurant Honeybear. Image: Westend61
You eat with your hands at Auckland restaurant Honeybear. Image: Westend61

The New Zealand restaurant arrives courtesy of hospitality duo Mark Wallbank and Che Barrington, and the emphasis is on street food that you can eat with your hands, It is inspired by Myanmar, where the traditional cuisine is a less spicy array of Chinese, Indian, Sri Lankan and Southeast Asian elements. Burmese cuisine is quite new to Auckland, so it will be a welcome experience for both first-time samplers and devotees of the cuisine.

You eat with your hands at Auckland restaurant Honeybear.
You eat with your hands at Auckland restaurant Honeybear. Image by Honeybear

The interior of the restaurant is almost entirely pink with a neon roof border, and it has a nice outdoor area. Indian street snacks are available including the dosa, which is its version of a crepe. The flatbread is designed to scoop up the mint and coriander chutney and coconut green chilli sambol it comes served with. There are also the restaurant’s own versions of classic street food like panipuri, pakora with soft shell crab, 24-hour masala spiced beef and papdi chaat.

You eat with your hands at Auckland restaurant Honeybear.
You eat with your hands at Auckland restaurant Honeybear. Image by Honeybear

On the drinks side, you can expect a range of kombucha cocktails, variations of lassi and a selection of nano-brews. Honeybear can be found on 136/146 Ponsonby Road and further information is available here.