‘Vertigo-the place to go’ in Pukekohe


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Barry Mudgway with some of his team at Vertigo Bar & Kitchen: From left are Caitlin Johnstone, Natalia Ripia (general manager), Logan Walker (songwriter), Barry, and Nicole Semmens.

Barry Mudgway with some of his team at Vertigo Bar & Kitchen: From left are Caitlin Johnstone, Natalia Ripia (general manager), Logan Walker (songwriter), Barry, and Nicole Semmens.

Readers may remember the TV series ‘Cheers’ where everyone felt welcome in the bar; everyone knew each other; and everyone knew everyone else’s name.

The Vertigo Bar & Kitchen in King Street, Pukekohe, is just like ‘Cheers’.

It has become a hugely popular place for locals since Barry Mudgway took over the former Rever Bar in March of 2013.

“We wanted a catchy name for the bar”

Being a local, Barry has an understanding of what patrons like by way of food and entertainment.

He also knows the value of employing good staff and, together, they have endeavoured to make it an enjoyable for young and old as a place to dine.

“When we took the bar over all of us had an input into re-naming the new business,” said Barry in an interview.
“We wanted a catchy name and everyone contributed to it, agreeing finally on ‘Vertigo’, because it was, we felt, ‘on the way up’.

‘Vertigo, the Place to Go’ becomes theme song

“One of our young staff members at the time, the talented Logan Walker, actually wrote a song about the business and, accompanied by Moana Blake on guitar, they posted their song, ‘Vertigo the Place to Go’ .

“It is a catchy number and we’ve adopted it as our theme song.”

The Vertigo Bar & Kitchen is run along pub lines, with good service and good food at great prices.

General manager, Natalia Ripia and her assistant, Nicole Semmens, spoke to We Love Pukekohe and agreed that Vertigo Bar & Kitchen was a great place for family and friends because of its good service and its quirky atmosphere.

“We have a great selection of tasty pub food at great prices,” said Natalia
“And we pride ourselves on giving good service with a smile,” added Nicole.

“Plus, we like to give our customers plenty of choice,” said Barry.

Affordable meals always on the menu

“Our aim is to make everything affordable, from a value menu starting at $12-$15 as well as a full dinner menu.

“We cater for all ages and a number of regular customers come in almost on a daily basis. They are a “nice mix” of young and old.

Barry adds that new people are always welcome to visit Vertigo where they will be met by happy staff members who “love to think outside the square”.

“They are always looking for new promotions to attract patrons and through their inititiatives we are holding regular Theme Nights; a DJ, Sky, entertains on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights and he is very talented, mixing his beats from old school right up to the new.

“Sky is always reading the crowd and changing it up to suit.”

“The theme nights have ranged from UV Glow Paint Parties, Ladies’ Nights, ‘Pirates’, ‘Grease’, ‘Coyote Ugly’ and, during the rugby season we held a Red, Black and White Night where everyone had to dress in those colours.

“Friday nights are usually reserved for meat pack raffles and complimentary nibbles which involve people coming from work.

“They enjoy it because they can relax for a while over a drink and they are able to stay in their work clothes,” said Barry.

Catering for sports-minded people too is a substantial part of Vertigo’s service: There are seven large TVs that have proved to be extremely popular with rugby and rugby league followers.

Vertigo is home for motorsport fans

Motorsport is also a favourite with patrons as a number of motor racing teams visit Vertigo after meetings throughout the year.

“We were really busy last weekend,” said Natalia. “It was all hands to the wheel as hosted a mixture of organisers, drivers and fans who were at the NZV8 Supertourers meeting at Pukekohe Park.

“As well,” said Nicole, “we organised a ‘Beach Party’ using mechanical surfboards. It really was fun.”

New loyalty scheme introduced

The Vertigo team is always looking at ways to make life enjoyable for patrons and recently, a new loyalty scheme was introduced.

It is called Sugarsweet Rewards and is proving to be popular in retail outlets throughout the country.

“It’s only a new thing,” said Barry.

“It works on frequency of visits, not money spent but it has plenty of benefits. I welcome people to call in and check it out.”

Call in to Vertigo Bar & Kitchen. You will always greeted by a cheerful staff member at 245 King Street, Pukekohe.

Their phone number is 09 2392653 or you can email vertigobar@hotmail.com

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About the Author
Rex Warwood is a well-known local with a passion for Franklin and its people. He has been spreading the news in our area since 1979 and has held various journalism and Editor positions. Contact Rex at rex.warwood@welovepukekohe.com.

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