Whatever reservations you may have about the French, their cuisine is what makes it all worthwhile. Bistro Gentil brings the delights of French gastronomy to the beautiful shores of Lake Wanaka, and of course some decent Gallic wines too.

“We revisit typical flavour combinations using fresh seasonal ingredients from our kitchen garden and the best of our region. Cardrona Merino lamb, Aoraki salmon, Canter Valley duck…”

— Mario Rodrigues, Head Chef

The quaint bistro surrounded by lavender sits just outside of town, offering tranquil lake views and beautiful sunsets. An ideal way to spend your evening.

“Indulge in the classics from our À La Carte menu such as French Onion Soup, Beef Tartare or Crème Brûlée. If you simply can’t choose let our chefs spoil you with our 5 Course Tasting Menu with matching wines or for those feeling adventurous you can Trust the Chef”

Why not spend the day sampling local award-winning wine here at the Maude Tasting Room and stay on for dinner.



  • Soup du jour / 15
  • French onion soup, gruyère crouton / 17
  • 55 day aged fillet tartare, radish, free-range egg yolk, smoked miso mayo, crispy shallots, crouton / 19
  • Smoked fish mousse, shaved fennel, lime gel, salsa verde mayonnaise, pickled cucumber, lavosh / 19
  • Cranky Goat curd, spring onion, puffed buckwheat, parsley, preserved lemon & tarragon dressing / 19
  • Wild shot venison carpaccio, poached pear, cranberry gel, cherry tomatoes, puffed wild rice / 19


  • Market fish, savoy cabbage, bacon, cauliflower purée, hazelnuts, lemon gel, capers / 38
  • 200g 55 day aged beef fillet, red onion relish, onion caramel, blue cheese butter, potato dauphines / 45
  • Celeriac purée, spiced cauliflower, vadouvan oil, roasted almonds, crispy kale, peppadews, baby potatoes / 38
  • Te Mana Lamb backstrap, croquette, Jerusalem artichoke, brown butter, comté cheese, chips / 40
  • Confit duck leg, pumpkin purée, creamy leeks, panisse, pumpkin seeds, crispy shallots / 39
  • 55 day aged ribeye, fried Brussel sprouts, parsnip purée, pancetta, walnuts, shiitake mushroom jus / 38


  • French fries with truffle salt
  • Silverbeet, broccoli, lemon & tarragon butter
  • Roasted carrots, spiced grains, sumac yogurt, watercress
  • Yams, honey, maple, ginger, rocket

– please add $8 for sides –


2 courses / 55  -or-  3 courses / 65


  • Vanilla creme brulée, almond crumb, hokey pokey ice cream  / 17
  • Stone fruit, almond sponge cake, homemade mascarpone, sorbet, candied almonds / 17
  • Banana semifreddo, tiramisu cream, coffee granita, coconut gel, almond crumb, banana ice cream / 17
  • Moka mousse, meringue, chocolate textures, sorbet / 17
  • Selection of house made ice cream and sorbets / 15

One 80g portion of French cheese, served with accompaniments / 21

Selection of three 40g portions of French cheeses, served with accompaniments / 32

Vanilla ice cream, espresso coffee, liqueur / 18


with wine matching

Soup of the Day
Maude Methode Traditionelle NV, Wanaka

Cranky Goat curd, leek, puffed buckwheat, parsley, preserved lemon & tarragon dressing
Jules Taylor Sauvignon Blanc ‘19, Marlborough

Market fish, bok choi, lemon cream, crayfish bisque, spinach, crispy shallots
Dog Point Chardonnay ‘16, Marlborough

Te Mana Lamb backstrap, croquette, Jerusalem artichoke, brown butter, comté cheese, chips
Maude Pinot Noir ‘18, Wanaka

Moka mousse, meringue, chocolate textures, sorbet
Croft Fine Ruby Port, Douro Valley, Portugal

5 Course menu / 100
Wine matching / 150

When the season allows, we enhance our dishes using fresh produce from the kitchen garden.

  •   Joined friends for dinner and enjoyed a superb meal with a great selection of local wines.
    One of the best dining experiences we have had in Wanaka. Starting with the... read more

    avatar thumb dajeck
  •   Fabulous. Great location, friendly service, and delicious food. Te loved everything about the meal. They have a card on each table and you are able to sample... read more

    avatar thumb LarryandTim
  •   This delightful bistro is about a 10 minute drive from the lakefront; and sits up on a hill with gorgeous views of Lake Wanaka. Sit outside on the patio if... read more

    avatar thumb joyful1LasVegas
  •   While on holiday in NZ we visited Wanaka and celebrated my wife's birthday in this restaurant. Excellent food, good service and a nice and special way to choose your wines... read more

    avatar thumb leonp217
  •   Loved the food, the wine, the atmosphere and the service. The steak and the pork were amazing, the chefs dessert converted my partner to desserts, and the wine was lovely.... read more

    avatar thumb Bri1966
  •   Wow! Top class food that is probably one of the best in NZ, friendly and attentive service and to top it off outstanding views. Can not recommend this any higher!... read more

    avatar thumb Amy098765
  •   Stumbled upon this gem on our last night and was very impressed with everything on offer. From the cosy setting to the genuine service! I did the Chef's Choice and... read more

    avatar thumb kellydZ8895PN
  •   I'm still digesting the delicious 3 course meal as I write this. The food was next level. If you're wanting the best of what Wanaka has to offer then this... read more

    avatar thumb BoabGlen
  •   We had high expectations and it delivered. First off the wine experience is top notch. The ability to taste all types wines before you get a bottle is... read more

    avatar thumb Pete P
  •   We had an enjoyable birthday dinner at the cozy and romantic Bistro Gentil. The Chef and his team put much love into their dishes. They are beautifully plated. The menu... read more

    avatar thumb jdwhitemaui


To make a reservation, simply complete the form below.

For private hire, large groups and special requests email bistrogentilwanaka@gmail.com.

For parties larger than 8 people, we offer a set menu so we can deliver the best service. Please email for more details.

A request from us:

If you are unable to honour your reservation or would like to make any changes, please let us know as soon as possible. It is important that we reallocate seats to our waiting list during busy times.

We are a small restaurant, so the amount of staff on in an evening is based on our bookings. We will love you for it!



Opening Hours
Tuesday–Saturday: 6:00pm–9:00pm

To Make a Reservation
Click here

For Inquiries
Ph: 03 443 2299
Email: bistrogentilwanaka@gmail.com
Or fill out the form below