Michael Meredith has been made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services as a restaurateur and to philanthropy. Meredith has been an integral part of the Auckland culinary scene for a number of years, at Antoine’s, Vinnies and as a founding chef at The Grove. In 2007 he started his eponymous restaurant in Mt Eden, which went on to be named as best restaurant by a number of publications, and he has twice been named Outstanding Chef at the Auckland hospitality awards.

“You don’t do these things to be honoured,” he said of receiving the honour. “Shock was the first thing that came to mind.”

Further to his skill in the kitchen, it is Meredith’s philanthropy which contributed to the honour. He runs weekly ‘Dine by Donation’ nights at Meredith’s, with profits being donated to charity. He also serves as the culinary advisor for charity group Eat My Lunch, which has given free lunches to over 300,000 children at low decile schools.