Day 4: What I'm Eating and Drinking
And just like that the first weekend of Visa Wellington On a Plate 2018 has come and gone with a hiss and a roar. The catch-ups I’ve had with my workmates have been about what we ate and drank, and I’m excited about what’s in store this week.
What I’ve been eating and drinking
- Even though I’m not a morning person, it turns out I will willingly get up before 6am in the name of burgers. My first port of call on Friday was Hippopotamus for their Le Petit Déjeuner breakfast burger. Not too big for this time of day, but substantial enough to feel you’ve had a proper breakfast. The chorizo and black pudding patty was tasty, with the saltiness blanked out with the frittata and tomato chutney. The chunky hash brown tots were crispy on the outside, and melt-in-your-mouth soft on the inside.
- For lunch I wandered up to Thorndon for Sprig & Fern's Beer No Evil, Pie No Evil. We were served five gourmet pies alongside five of their speciality brews, including an Imperial Porter (a Visa WOAP exclusive), a punchy but velvety beer that went perfectly with the beef, bacon and blue cheese pie. Tickets are still available for some of these sessions so get booking.
- I wrapped up my (very long) first day of Visa WOAP at Beervana. My favourite brews included Whistling Sister’s Sipping Duck Thai Red Curry Ale (weird but tasty), Heyday’s Transdimensional Shenanigans Mangoweisse, and Mean Doses’ Mean Red IPA.
- Hawthorn Lounge never disappoint, and their Cocktail Welly entry is another winning drink. Ritz & Rhino is an elegant take on a martini featuring Lighthouse Gin, white chocolate Lillet Blanc and honeycomb-infused Yellow Chartreuse. The result is a delicately sweet drink that mellows out as it warms up. Served with a delicious selection of petit fours.
- Other burgers worth checking out include Parrotdog’s L.B. burger (duck confit with kale slaw, Portobello mushroom, pickled ginger and smoked cheddar) and Fidel’s El Fidelito Waffler (fried chicken with BBQ corn salsa, pickled red onions, cheddar, Fix & Fogg Smoke & Fire sauce and housemade ranch, served in between waffles and gravy on the side).
What I’ve heard is good
- My flatmate’s first Visa WOAP stop was Ombra with his workmates. He reported back that Ombra’s burger and festival dish are both 'mind blowing” and set the bar high for the rest of his festival. Ombra’s burger features pulled duck with crispy skin and pâté, giardiniera pickles, endive and saffron aioli, and their festival dish is housecured and roasted suckling pig, potato and insalta russa.
- I’ve heard rave reviews from independent parties for
be in quick – they sold out of burgers within hours on both Saturday and Sunday. , which as it sounds: smoked beef short rib with candied bacon and Zany Zeus boozy cheese sauce in an Arobake bun, with curly fries. Wilson Barbecue will be dishing up this beast of a burger at Tuatara Third Eye everyday during Visa WOAP, but you’ll have to
What’s coming up
- Start your day with a caffeine and chocolate hit at Beans and Bars: On-The-Go. This early morning event pairs four single-origin coffees with four world-class craft chocolates. Luke Owen Smith from The Chocolate Bar and the Coffee Supreme team will tell you all about the parallels between coffee and chocolate.
- Kaibosh and Hillside are teaming up for All Taste, No Waste this week. This popular event is back to inspire and delight diners with a multi-course dinner featuring commonly ignored and underappreciated ingredients. Each ticket goes towards a special dinner for those who regularly receive Kaibosh’s services.
- Beach Babylon are taking you back to the age of disco and flared jeans with That 70s Dinner Party. Celebrate the groovy decade with fondue, Swedish meatballs, stroganoff and more. No tickets are required – just drop in!
- On Thursday night Chow will be putting their spin on yum cha favourites. Yum Chow kicks off with Asian-inspired daiquiris before sequing into seven courses of yum cha-inspired dishes. Tickets are still available for the 10.30pm session – an ideal late night-feed of dumplings and daiquiris, complete with a soundtrack provided by Wellington’s finest DJs.
- Pop in to one of this year’s pop-ups: Salty Pidgin’s Good Companions re-imagines classic Kiwi fish and chips; Lashings Pop-Up Brownie Bar at Wellington Chocolate Factory will satisfy your sweet tooth with seriously decadent brownies; and Match Wine Bar is back at Noble Rot for all your wine needs.
Don’t forget to rate your burgers, cocktails and festival dishes after you’ve enjoyed them. Your ratings help determine the finalists and winners for each category. And each rating gives you a chance to , including a double pass to the exclusive awards night.