Rock-It Kitchen, 248 Wainui Rd, Raglan.

We'd heard… that the old shearing-shed turned cafe on the road to the beach serves great coffee and brunch with a true Raglan vibe.

We started with… French toast with fried bacon and banana ($18.50) and the Sirloin steak sandwich Reuben-style with potato skins ($19.50) along with some excellent Raglan Roast coffees. The rye bread was dark and delicious, the meat still pink in the middle and the horseradish-gherkin dressing a perfect balance of creamy and sour. Although not easy to eat gracefully it's a gorgeous, satisfying dish. The French toast my companion ordered was beautifully presented and prepared, but a bit on the small side.

The service was…welcoming and friendly. The front of the house in her floating 60s dress had the air of a camp mum embracing everybody with her warmth.

The vibe was… quirky and cosy. The tables and booths are made from dismantled sheep pens and the walls hung with art. We came on a rainy midweek morning and the dreamy music and relaxed atmosphere made me feel like I could hole up and hide away from the world if I wanted.

If you go… come on a sunny day so the kids can play with the old tractor on the big lawn while you sit on the large deck and sip a cuppa or a beer from their eclectic list.

But try to avoid... coming in a rush on the weekends. It can get quite busy and you might have to wait for a table.

Rating out of five: 5


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