Christchurch has some iconic places that resonate amongst us. Dux De Lux is possibly the definition of this and has been a core part of Christchurch life since 1978, starting on the ground floor in the Arts Centre, before expanding into a bar in 1987 Live music, coffee and fresh fruit juice, yes fruit juice, were unique selling points back then.
Oh how far we have come. and it’s amazing to think that we are celebrating the 40th anniversary this month. It’s hard to think of Christchurch hospitality over those years not having the Dux as a core part of its hospitality fabric. It’s where the likes of Salmonella Dub and Shapeshifter got their start. It’s where Bic Runga was found by Sony Music and The Feelers by Warner. Dux was a hotbed of New Zealand music right in our own backyard.
Recognising there was a need for beer that was a bit different, the team started selling European styles. In 1989 Richard Sinke had a craft brewery humming along just as America was having its craft beer renaissance and well before it took off here.
The year 1990 saw its move away from a purely vegetarian menu to incorporating seafood, which has become such a staple in Dux Dining now and something the restaurant is well recognised for doing well at. I remember the moment I sat down for a fantastic Mexican dish which became a prime motivator in my career as a chef.
“We’re extremely excited to see what the vibrancy and life will look like in Christchurch in 10 years.”
So many of us have a Dux story to share. How many of us enjoyed the courtyard next to the Arts Centre on a balmy afternoon to meet friends or family over pizza and a pitcher of Ginger Tom, protected from a ghastly southerly or easterly wind?
Richard Sinke is proud of what he’s achieved over the years, but as he says, “Dux’s future is tied to Christchurch. We’re extremely excited to see what the vibrancy and life will look like in Christchurch in 10 years.”
Yes, our future in Christchurch is exciting, but I think it’s great to look back on the milestone that is Dux de Lux on its 40th anniversary and congratulate the business on not only surviving in such a challenging industry, but becoming the iconic gamechanger that it has been over the years. It has shaped what we’ve come to expect from hospitality in Christchurch. Here’s looking at you Dux De Lux. Cheers for the memories.