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Monique Fiso Closes Popular Wellington Restaurant, Hiakai

Monique Fiso
After years of culinary excellence and cultural exploration, Monique Fiso has announced the closure of Hiakai.

 Founded in 2016 with a vision to share Māori and Pasifika ingredients and cuisine, Hiakai quickly gained international acclaim for its innovative approach.

The journey began with pop-up events, hāngī, and culinary experiences across New Zealand and overseas. In 2018, Hiakai transitioned to a permanent brick-and-mortar restaurant, becoming a beacon in the dining scene of Aotearoa. From the day its doors opened, Hiakai has been fully booked, a testament to its impact on the culinary landscape.

However, as the world evolved, so did Hiakai

Recognising the challenges of running a small business, particularly in the demanding restaurant industry, the team at Hiakai has decided to pivot towards new ventures. With a focus on addressing global food crises and advocating for the security and sovereignty of food systems, Hiakai aims to be part of the solution.

The decision to close also aligns with the landlord’s intention to sell the building. This marks the opportune moment for Hiakai to transition. While bidding farewell to the cherished venue and the land it occupies, the team expresses gratitude for being part of its rich history.

Despite the closure, Hiakai assures its patrons that the journey is far from over. With a wealth of ideas and projects on the horizon, Hiakai is evolving rather than ending. Reservations are fully booked until the closure.

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