Open for Business: 1154 Pastaria
February 28, 2022
While wandering on Cuba Street, you'll find one of Wellingtonians' favourite pasta shops: 1154 Pastaria. General Manager and co-owner Kieran Wallace shares what's cooking and how diners can support their business under Red.
Kieran and Frankie Wallace
Tell us about yourself: Hi, I’m Kieran the General Manager and co-owner of 1154 Pastaria and Scopa Pizzeria. I am from England originally, but have lived in Wellington for 9 years. I love football and play locally for Seatoun, drinking natural wine and hanging out with my son who is 15 months old and his mum. Sometimes I get to do all three in one day.
Tell us what makes you special? 1154 Pastaria is all about doing simplicity well. Pasta was always a dish for the people and that’s the general feeling we try to create – everyone is invited. We are accessible, efficient and fun and a place for the whole city to share a table (when not under restrictions of course) and to enjoy a big bowl of their favourite pasta dish; the classics done well. With a humble, small, yet eclectic wine list, housemade sodas and a ‘cult-status’ GF chocolate torta along with the atmosphere of energy we work hard to create, we feel that we definitely offer something different to the wonderful array of options in the city.
What support would you love to see from your guests? We really do feel that our guests are trying very hard to support us, in what we all know is a completely unprecedented situation. We really appreciate everyone who has chosen to come and visit, or to place an order online when there are a lot of pretty massive issues to contend with at the moment. It reinforces why we love doing what we do.
The best way to help is to continue to be understanding if things have to change a little (menu items missing for example) as our industry is impacted in a multitude of different ways right now. To be ever patient with the staff as they try to balance covid protocol and rules, trying to keep everyone (including themselves) safe and to create a great dining experience. They are doing such a good job!
Of course, like all businesses around we would appreciate more mid-week visits, even though we understand why there is a little hesitancy right now. But the industry as a whole has followed all the rules and has adapted our operations at every setting, to ensure that our customers can be confident when visiting. Keep supporting, keep the city centres buzzing, it helps us all feel a little more…normal.
What's a favourite on your menu? Any special? It’s hard not to mention the fan favourite ‘Carbonara’ here. It’s popularity in comparison to the rest of our menu is pretty crazy. We sometimes joke we could almost be called ‘1154 Carbonaria’.
But, I would like to promote our newest special night ‘Gnocchi Gnight’. Based on the success of our Wellington on a Plate dish last year, we decided to do Gnocchi more regularly! Every Thursday customers can grab our house-made Gnocchi; currently with pancetta, peas and a cream & black pepper sauce with parmesan. It’s another simple, classic that is so tasty!
Where are you picking up lunch/dinner/brunch on your day off? These days we have to be pretty ‘kid savvy’ with our choices, but luckily Frankie loves to be out and about; he basically spent his first year in Prefab! He is definitely a regular there. But, I always like to try and support the neighbours when I can – coffees at Milk Crate & Customs, wines at Puffin or Ascot, the odd brunch at Highwater if we get the chance.
For further afield weekend activities, we love to visit our mates at ParrotDog in Lyall Bay and if I’m really lucky, we might get to go to Ortega and grab a spot at the bar there.
Any quotes or thoughts you want to share? To quote my fellow countryman Ricky Gervais, who’s always got something relevant to say: ‘Be happy, it really annoys the negative people’.