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Wellington’s Greatest Hits to take you from brekky to dessert

July 7, 2020

In uncertain times such as these it’s always great to connect with familiarity for a bit of comfort. So we’ve asked Wellington eateries to present us with their Greatest Hits - more than 120 iconic dishes that have stuck around over the years and keep diners coming back for more. 

From time to time, some restaurants have even had to learn their lesson (via dismayed howls of indignation) when these favourites were unwittingly removed from menus. Now these dishes are mainstays. 

Here’s Visa Wellington On a Plate’s playlist of Greatest Hits to take you through from brekky to dessert. 


Breakfast - Neo’s Cafe & Eatery’s Pumpkin Buttermilk Pancakes

Neo is a Wellington Greatest Hit all in itself, a lasting favourite in the city since the mid-90s. Its Greatest Hit dish, Pumpkin Buttermilk Pancakes, featured in the Dominion Post’s Dish of the Week in 2019. And if you’re questioning the flavour profile of pumpkin in pancakes, here’s some feedback from Neo customers that may sway your opinion: "That was the best plate of pancakes I've ever had", "Best pancakes of my life", "The pumpkin pancakes are out of this world! The combination of flavours is incredible”. You can’t argue with media validation and repetitive praise from diners. 


Lunch - Origin’s Vegan Hash

Petone locals are already in on this Greatest Hit, vegan or no. Developed back when Origin was Go Bang Espresso, owners, Cate and Jason, developed a hash cake that stemmed from Cate's Irish love for potatoes. A few years on, the team recreated this classic with a new and improved housemade hash, and adapted to include a vegan palate, with portobello mushroom, crispy hash and even crispier facon. It’s been a hit with vegans and non-vegans ever since. (But if you really need a meaty hit, you can swap the facon out for bacon.)


Grazing - The Hudson on Chews - Charcuterie

The Hudson is known for doing niche really well, and is known for its large selection of whisky, gin, local beers and its charcuterie. 

In fact, The Hudson has a charcuterie station with dry agers where cured meats are displayed, waiting to be sliced and layered onto a charcuterie board, loaded with NZ and International cured meats and cheese, lavosh, quince jelly, pickles, spiced hummus, sourdough. Our recommendation? Meat up for nibbles at The Hudson. 


Dinner - Oikos Hellenic Cuisine’s Kleftiko Slow-cooked, braised lamb shoulder

Nothing screams comfort food like lamb for dinner, whether it be roasted, slow-cooked or in shank form. And let’s face it - the world needs a little comfort right now. 

Oikos in Miramar’s Greatest Hit is a lamb dish of the low and slow-cooked variety, called Kleftiko, meaning “stolen”. This is an adaptation of a traditional Greek dish, which originated with a group of bandits called Klephts who took cover in the mountains. They would steal sheep for food, and cook them under a curtain of obscurity to avoid detection during the Ottoman rule in Greece. The meat was cooked in an underground pit of coals to mask smoke and aromas. Fortunately, you won’t have to endure such a cloak and dagger experience to enjoy this dish. 


Dessert - Gelissimo’s Yum Yum Ice Cream 

Nothing gets between Wellington and its ice cream, least of all winter. At 23 litres per capita per annum, Kiwis are amongst the biggest consumers of ice cream in the world (even more so than summer-prone countries such as Australia and the USA). 

Top up your personal annual quota at Gelissimo with their Greatest Hit, Yum Yum Ice Cream. The name speaks for itself, derived from its combination of Fix & Fogg peanut butter stirred through freshly churned vanilla bean gelato and rippled with salted caramel and dark chocolate. This is such a favourite with Wellingtonians that when Gelissimo decided t o put this flavour of gelato on a three-month hiatus, it was met with howls of protest. At which point, Gelissimo dutifully reinstated Yum Yum back to its rightful place in the Gelissimo line-up, never to be removed again. 

Check out more than 120 of Wellington's Greatest Hits, create your own playlist, and try the dishes that eateries wouldn't dare remove from their menus!