Wellington restaurants have it all. Our favourites are comfortable, somewhat casual, and always serving great food. The city offers traditional, international, and eclectic options. Wellington may be a city known for its coffee but take a look at some of the food we tried at several Wellington restaurants and see if you agree it is also a city for eating.
Our recent road trip to New Zealand’s capital city allowed enough time to visit a few old favourites and discover a few new Wellington restaurants too.
Our Favourite Wellington Restaurants
Left Bank, 210C Left Bank, Te Aro
I have been talking about this Mexican taco shop since we discovered it over a year ago. I had eaten here on a mummy/daughter trip with each of my girls. Finally, hubby got to discover what we have been raving about all this time. Authentic flavours, plates full of food, and a friendly atmosphere, no wonder Viva Mexico is my favourite of the Wellington restaurants. It’s located down an alley off Cuba Street. I apologise to the people of Wellington if I am sharing a local’s secret with the world.
2 Taranaki Street Odlins Square Taranaki Wharf
04 916 8369
An iconic waterfront location, huge bean bags, and table seating both indoors and out make Karaka Cafe a great place to relax. It features New Zealand flavours surrounded by traditional Maori decor.
Egmont Street Eatery
Egmont Street, Te Aro
Another alleyway eatery, this restaurant is located in a former car park – although you would never know it when you were there. Modern and delicious, the portions are made for sharing, and we just kept on ordering. It wasn’t all salads; we had a bit of everything
Picnic Cafe in the Botanic Gardens
Begonia House, Rose Garden 101 Glenmore Street, Thorndon
We were not planning on eating here, but rather just to enjoy the colourful Wellington Botanic Gardens. Then I saw this salmon salad served to someone else. I was hooked.
29 Courtenay Place, Te Aro
146 Cuba St, Te Aro
49/77 Jervois Quay, Wellington Central
What could be better than a place specialising in boutique coffee and gourmet gelato? We sat at the counter. Hubby had the best of all worlds – an affogato (coffee and gelato in one cup).
3 Mulgrave Street, Thorndon
New Zealand’s oldest surviving tavern and restaurant operating from its original site. Be sure to look through the area of glass floor to view the original 1840 cellar.
Unwind with a wine or craft beer
Locals know there are plenty of options for unwinding after a long day. Here are a few unique options, in addition to the Thistle Inn just above:
- Hashigo Zake: They call themselves a cult beer bar. Where else can you drink in a former police station’s cells?
- The Backbencher Gastropub: This is where you might spot Members of Parliament, either eating or their likeness as large puppets hanging from the walls. It’s a great place for a glass of wine, craft beer, or a meal.
- The Garage Project: a popular Wellington microbrewery.
It is a city known for coffee, and to date, we have not had a bad cup anywhere. Our favourite coffee spots are:
- Mojo – while the coolest Mojo is probably the one located in the old St. James Theatre, we also enjoy sitting outside at the one across from Shed 13 on Customhouse Quay. We even enjoyed a self-guided tour and watched Mojo roasting coffee.
- Photo Espresso – delicious coffee and an enclosed counter filled with old cameras. Although, we were a bit surprised to see the camera model I recently passed down to Sarah in the case.
- Arabica – friendly staff and a great cup of coffee. Popular with locals, so you know it’s great.
Are you wondering what else to do in Wellington?
⇓⇓ Check out these ⇓⇓
37 Things to do in Wellington New Zealand
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