The Vibe

Black Shag is a team of hospitality craftspeople. We put our hearts and souls into creating quality food and coffee, and a welcoming and inspiring environment to enjoy it. 

On coffee

Good coffee is the foundation on which Black Shag is built. Co-owner Dion Milanesi worked in the coffee industry for over a decade, developing a deep passion and respect for coffee. At Black Shag our La Marzoco Strada is the star of the show, with our Barista station on full show. During peak periods the station provides a feast for the eyes, and at quiet times of the day, you can order a hand-pressed filter or syphon brew, accompanied by a coffee education if you want to know more about what you are drinking. Dion has recently taken his passion for coffee a step further, with the introduction of our new brand; Foxy Coffee Roasters. Foxy coffee is roasted by Dion, on a micro-batch roaster. He sources his coffees through trade aid, ensuring that Foxy Coffee is high quality, organically grown, and purchased from farmers who are paid fairly for their work. We currently serve our Foxy Blend with our milk based drinks, and single origin coffees Black. We sell the Foxy Coffee range in store, and our packaging is 100% paper. 

The Space

Interior spaces are a joined passion for Sylvie and Dion. The wooden panelling, bench seats and tables, shelves and even our till ipad holder are all designed and made by Dion. Sylvie’s influence is in the rotating displays of local artworks, the branding and menus, as well as the customer experience flow in the space. With a background in classroom teaching, Sylvie brings a passion for creating a culture of community. The space is intimate, we love getting to know our customers and seeing friendships form between people who frequent The Shag. 

The Kitchen

Our food philosophy is to embrace local and seasonal produce with culinary creativity, with a menu that changes regularly to reflect this. Our meals are designed to be nourishing, unique and full-flavoured by talented head chef, Evan Milina. Evan has been cooking for over 20 years. His background is french, aisian and global fusion cooking, having worked both in New Zealand and Internationally. Evan cares deeply about the Whakapapa of food - where it comes from and the journey it makes from being harvested, prepared and served. Creating meals is about more than just the food, it is about the emotion and experience. 

We are committed to preparing fresh, whole foods that are sourced as sustainably as possible. A big focus for us is reducing single-use waste. We make all of our chocolate syrups, alternative mylks, yoghurts and flavour shots in house. Adding sugar to your coffee comes in the form of our house made sugar syrup, served in a jug. This alone has saved thousands of single use sugar sachets. 

Since the 2020 lockdown, we have been keeping a kitchen garden at our home which supplies the cafe with edible flowers, salad greens and herbs. Where we can’t make or grow our products, we support local producers like Farm Fresh South (Local Milk in Glass Bottles) and Te Wae Wae free range eggs - both companies who share our drive to reduce waste, and provide their product in reusable packaging. We compost our coffee grounds and collect food scraps for a local pig farmer.