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Toastie triumphs

11 May 2022
love chicken the mac n' cheese toastie
Queenstown-based Love Chicken's mac n' cheese toastie.

The Great New Zealand Toastie Takeover is back for a fifth year, showcasing the best and most creative toasted sandwiches from around the country. Words Hannah Brown

Last year the national competition served up 80,000 gourmet toasties – and this year those numbers have doubled – with 185 venues entering their creations.

South Island talents took away the top awards in 2021 – Steve MacDougall from Mollies in Blenheim won the top prize and proved his toastie was a winning combination.

His ‘Mo Jo Pork Cuban with a Twist’ toastie featured slow roasted pork belly, provolone, chimichurri, American mustard, McClure's pickles, and apple chilli gel slathered between toasted sourdough and served with kumara crisps.

The People’s Choice Award will be back again this year, so Kiwis can vote for their favourite sandwich standouts – Toastie Picton took out this category last year.

The toasties are scored on presentation, taste, innovation, and originality, by a group of 30 judges overseen by head judge Kerry Tyack.

Judging for the South Island will be split into the upper south (including Christchurch and the West Coast) and lower south.

Once the finalists are decided on June 22, the competition’s toastmaster and McClure’s Pickles founder Joe McClure will visit the finalists to sample the toasties with Tyack for the mighty task of determining the 2022 supreme winner, announced on July 27.

McClure says he’s humbled by the number of entries, especially given the tough couple of years the hospitality industry has faced.

“What an incredible list of entries – I’m blown away by the sheer number and the quality of the entrants, as well as the time that has gone into developing some innovative and incredible sounding toasted sandwiches.”

It’s the perfect time to check out a few of the toasted sandwich creations at

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