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Common Ground - Visa WOAP’s 2020 Festival theme & events

August 28, 2020

Every year, Visa Wellington On a Plate has a festival theme as inspiration for events, Dine Wellington dishes, Burger Wellington burgers and Cocktail Wellington cocktails. 

Even before New Zealand went into Level 4 lockdown in March, we had settled on the Festival theme, Common Ground. Since then the meaning behind the theme has taken on a more poignancy. 

Social distancing and global events have made people truly appreciate the importance of connecting and togetherness, and that food and dining is often a major conduit for that.

Under Level 4 lockdown, you couldn’t pop out for a lunch meeting, grab a coffee or dine with friends and family outside your bubble. It gave people an appreciation for that ‘third place’ - those cafes, restaurants and bars that are often the places where we gather and connect with others, especially in culinary cities like Wellington.

And in a year where things have made us a bit, shall we say, “world weary”, our emphasis for the Festival theme in 2020 is on community collaboration, togetherness and celebrating the immense depth of culinary talent within the Wellington region. 

With more than 100 Festival events taking place over the month of October, and Visa pre-sale tickets available from midday on Monday, 31 August, here are some events that reflect some of the values of this year’s Festival theme, Common Ground. 


Every year, we see more and more Visa Wellington On a Plate events combining cuisine with supporting community, social enterprise and good causes. This year, it seems more important than ever. 

If you’re looking for some VisaWOAP events to feed the soul as well as your belly, try these tasty feelgood events that also do great things for the community: Souptastic!, A World of Ability, Everybody Eats and All Taste, No Waste. Guilt-free, indeed. 


Nothing brings people together like a new hobby. Obviously, if you’re going to Visa Wellington On a Plate, it goes without saying that eating is probably one of yours. How about combining your hobby of feeding yourself with a new one? 

There are a crazy number of fun Festival events this year, bringing food and drink together with activities such as dancing (Boogie and Burger), art (Draw, Cook and Eat!), flower arranging (Manuela Flowers’ Blooming Rosé), perfumery (Fragrance vs Cocktail - An Olfactive Showdown), movies (La Dolce Vita), foraging (Hillside Forage), and even sport (Our Ground at the Basin Reserve). 


Visa Wellington On a Plate isn’t solely reserved for the big kids. We’re all about family fun for everyone™️! And what with the October school holidays looming, you may be on the lookout for something to keep the little darlings entertained. We have some super fun, kid-friendly culinary dining events such as Foxglove’s Howler at Hogwarts, Lulu’s Island Luau, Havana’s Go Nuts for DonutsBambuichisan’s Corn Doggy Dog or Zelati’s La Vega Loca. Or nurture their interest in cooking and cuisine with kids’ master classes such as Bottega's Bambini Pizza Class, Cake It Forward’s One Cake, Three Ways or Carrello del Gelato’s It’ll Be Sweet gelato making classes.

Celebrating NZ 

Yes, it’s frustrating you can’t saunter onto a plane and jet off to a far-off destination. But remember that New Zealand is also unchartered territory for New Zealanders! 

Check out the hyperlocal events taking place on your doorstep, that celebrate NZ ingredients and produce, dishes, culture and local destinations, such as Thistle Inn’s Hyper Local, Five Gates Farm’s A Sustainable Journey From Farm to Table, Highwater’s Here and Now, Rita’s Sunday Series and Peninsula Pasta, which celebrates all things Miramar. In the process you’re supporting local businesses and producers!

These are foodie experiences with a twist and what makes Visa Wellington On a Plate such a dynamic, unique culinary festival! Join us on common ground and take a seat at the table. 

Grab your tickets at, Visa pre-sale tickets are available from midday, Monday, 31 August to midnight, Wednesday, 2 September and general tickets are available from midday, Monday, 7 September.