Best French Bakery in New Zealand - 2023 French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Gala & Business Awards (FNZCCI)

New Zealand’s Best French Bakery!

We were honoured to win the accolade of New Zealand’s Best French Bakery at the 2023 French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Gala & Business Awards (FNZCCI) on Monday night.  The awards acknowledge excellence in French cuisine from bakeries, cafes and restaurants throughout NZ.

Kirsty was invited to attend a glitzy gala dinner in Auckland and was presented with the award on stage by the French Ambassador to New Zealand Mme Laurence Beau.

“We are thrilled to receive this award. Our front of house team really stepped up to try and get as many votes as possible. This is very much a celebration of their fantastic efforts too! People’s choice awards are special to us because our customers take the time out of their busy lives to vote so we are really appreciative of them and how they support our business so wholeheartedly.”


Creating and baking French food is an absolute passion of ours and there is no higher honour for us than to be recognized by the French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce!

As we all know, the French people take their gastronomy very seriously. It is so much a part of their culture and identity and we are very proud to represent and celebrate the most delicious French baking and pastries everyday in our little slice of paradise in Wanaka.

“We were absolutely thrilled to even attend, let alone take out the top People’s Choice award,” she says. “I didn’t realise the French Ambassador Laurence Beau would be there, so it really made it that extra bit special to be receiving the award from her.”

Pembroke Pâtisserie received 45% of the total competition votes to win the People’s Choice, Best French Bakery award. It was one of nine applicants entered in the category.

“The award is a collaborative effort between us, our customers and our Wānaka community,” Schmutsch says. “Votes for the People’s Choice Award were done by QR code -the front of house team at Pembroke Pâtisserie took on the challenge with great gusto to secure as many votes as possible from our loyal and enthusiastic customers. We are passionate about French pastries and baking, so for us, this is the icing on the cake!”

“Even though we are a small patisserie at the bottom of the South Island, we’re pretty chuffed that we can compete with some of the big-name bakeries in the North Island.”

French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce business development and operations manager Jeanne Nicolas says the day was about highlighting French culture.

“Food and gastronomy is a really important part of the French culture, and way of life,” she says. “I feel like French people are really proud of what they can achieve, to represent the culture abroad.

It is the French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce’s third time organising the awards – with competition categories including People’s Choice of Best French Bakery, Best French Café & Bistro and Best French Restaurant.

Public vote for the People’s Choice Awards opened February 13, 2023 and closed March 6, 2023. More than 220 New Zealand, French and French Pacific guests gathered at the Ellerslie Event Centre to celebrate the award winners on March 6.


Pembroke Patisserie Owner Kirsty at the Awards Dinner