Growing up in Whakatane and Gisborne , the eldest girl of 8 children, Anne took on the job of preparing meals for her whanau at the tender age of 10 paving the way not only for a career in the culinary arts but cementing her love and belief in manaakitanga
With the concept of manaakitanga underpinning all the Maori Queen of Cuisine does, Anne has gone on to create the successful television series Kai Ora, publish a cookbook, guest chef on cruise ships for P&O and host many an event at her two homes in Auckland City and Pakiri Beach
Manaakitanga means hosting, in a holistic sense and Anne has turned this into an art form, hosting guests from around the world - welcoming, feeding and nourishing them in every way possible. Such is her mana as an entertainer extraordinaire that she has been asked to host visiting VIP’s looking for a genuine Kiwi experience including The Neville Brothers, Eartha Kitt and Sweet Honey in the Rock plus many more..
Crossing the threshold into Anne’s home means being greeted like a long lost friend, and taken on a journey. “It’s very rare that you can go anywhere in the world and be hosted in someone’s home” she says .“From the moment they step in the door, they feel special.”
With many international visitors listing a desire to experience Maori culture as a top priority when they visit Aotearoa, Anne’s intimate dining events in her Auckland and Pakiri Beach homes are popular, as are her masterclasses, where she passes on her expertise at preparing the fresh, simple, unadulterated food she is famous for.
“When you come to my house, if I host you, you don’t forget that. It’s an experience. That’s what I have to offer.”