A Wanaka chef who organised a special dinner to mark the closing of his restaurant has had to cancel due to the Covid-19 lockdowns and is offering takeaways instead.
It is the latest in a long list of setbacks Ode Conscious Dining chef and co-owner Luke Parkinson has faced since opening the restaurant in Post Office Lane, Wanaka, in May 2017.
The first came when the restaurant was gutted by fire, 15 months after Ode opened and two days after Cuisine magazine awarded the restaurant its first hat.
Ode reopened a year later, in August 2019, with a staff of 17 but had to close again when the pandemic hit last year.
Since then Mr Parkinson has reopened but had to close the restaurant several times due to stress, employment issues and the economic downturn due to Covid-19.
It was to close its doors for the last time this week.
“To say our lives at Ode have felt like a roller coaster would be an understatement,” Mr Parkinson said.
“We were fully prepared for our final two weeks of service, ensuring we had enough stock on hand to meet the capacity of a fully booked restaurant .. but as you know, fate had other plans.”
Mr Parkinson said they had incurred over $100,000 in losses due to this lockdown.
“Amidst all the chaos, we have a restaurant fully stocked with the finest organic South Island produce, so from Wednesday, September 1 to Saturday, September 4 we will see out the final days on our lease offering takeaways.
“Our final lap, celebration of existence and hustle to rise up in the face of adversity,” Mr Parkinson said.