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World Travel Guide > Guides > Oceania > New Zealand > Wellington

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Local time Wellington

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Restaurants in Wellington

Wellington has more restaurants, bars and cafés per head than New York. The city has established a well-deserved reputation as the culinary capital of the country, so dining out here is a must. Try the locally grown lamb, ostrich, venison and seafood (green mussels) if you get the opportunity.

The restaurants below have been grouped into three different pricing categories:
Expensive (over NZ$100)
Moderate (NZ$30 to NZ$100)
Cheap (under NZ$30)
These prices are for a three-course meal for one, including tax and tip but not drinks.

Expensive

Hippopotamus

Cuisine: International and French

The award-winning Hippopotamus embodies fine dining at its best. Blending old-world charm, French-influenced dishes, and fine New Zealand and European wines, the restaurant makes for a glamorous evening out. The venue is a part of the Museum Art Hotel, and offers breathtaking views of the Wellington harbour.

Address: , 90 Cable Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 802 8935.
Website: http://www.hippopotamus.co.nz

Logan Brown

Cuisine: Contemporary New Zealand

Located in a renovated 1920s banking chamber, this fine-dining restaurant has been hailed as the best in the capital. The restaurant itself might be impressive (high ceiling, majestic columns), but it is most definitely the food that is the star of the show here. Admittedly not cheap, but the menu is both exotic and mouth-watering. With a focus on organic, fair trade and responsibly sourced food, options range from smoked eel and crab for starters to beetroot lasagne and spiced duck for mains. Delicious.

Address: , 192 Cuba Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 801 5114.
Website: http://www.loganbrown.co.nz

Shed 5 Restaurant

Cuisine: Seafood

Originally built in 1888 as a woolstore, Shed 5 is one of the oldest remaining wharf stores in Lambton Harbour. A stunning waterfront location with an emphasis on good food (fresh seafood, New Zealand lamb, venison and poultry dishes) and a selection of both New Zealand and international wines has ensured the restaurant's success. Apart from its impressive wine cellar, Shed 5 also offers cigars.

Address: , Queen's Wharf, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 499 9069.
Website: http://www.shed5.co.nz

Moderate

Boulcott Street Bistro

Cuisine: French Bistro

This popular bistro has been serving customers for over 20 years. Set in a charming 19th century heritage cottage, the restaurant is headed up by chef and TV personality Rex Morgan, who delivers classic and innovative dishes with panache. Try the calamari or linguine, grilled pork chop, braised lamb shank and for dessert, finish off with sublime profiteroles or elderflower yoghurt panna cotta.

Address: , 99 Boulcott Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 499 4199.
Website: http://www.boulcottstreetbistro.co.nz

Matterhorn

Cuisine: Contemporary New Zealand

Describing itself as a "treasured local haunt", this retro restaurant has been serving up wonderful food since the 1960s. An innovative, iconic menu delivered in kitch surroundings means there is plenty to surprise: sample, for instance, kingfish cured in gin botanicals, sesame cream, rhubarb, unripe tomato and salted cucumber, new potatoes cooked in toasted hay, or red deer fillet served with cocoa, smoked beetroot, dried fig, almond cream and raspberry.

Address: , 106 Cuba Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 384 3359.
Website: http://www.matterhorn.co.nz

Ortega Fish Shack and Bar

Cuisine: Seafood

Specialising in fresh local seafood, Ortega Fish Shack and Bar is a casual venue that embodies the spirit of a beachside bungalow –fishing paraphernalia rate highly on the list of decorative elements here. Some of the innovative treats on the menu include snapper, tomato and chickpea ragout, cavolor nero and scampi emulsion; and soft-shelled crab, roasted pork belly, sweet tamarind, peanut slaw and coconut dressing.

Address: , 16 Majoribank Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 382 9559.
Website: http://ortega.co.nz

Cheap

Caffé L'Affare

Cuisine: Brunch

This place serves the best coffee in town. Period. Food includes all-day breakfast (choose from raisin toast, toasted bagels, porridge and berries, fresh fruit salads, eggs any way you like, etc) and toasted panini, seafood chowder and tasty salads for lunch. The cakes are also superb. Grab the paper, sit down, relax and enjoy.

Address: , 27 College Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 385 9748.
Website: http://www.laffare.co.nz

Monsoon Poon

Cuisine: Southeast Asian

This vibrant Southeast Asian restaurant serves a fab array of food from Vietnam, China, Thailand, India, Indonesia and Malaysia. There is also a lovely bar area offering wines, spirits and cocktails.

Address: , 12 Blair Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 803 3555.
Website: http://www.monsoonpoon.co.nz

The Flying Burrito Brothers

Cuisine: Mexican

Discover spicy, generously portioned dishes in this great Mexican cantina where staples such as chillies, epazote, chocolate, tomatoes, cilantro, and avocados paired up with locally produced meats and vegetables provide tasty but affordable dining options.

Address: , Corner of Cuba Street and Vivien Street, Wellington,
Telephone: +64 4 385 8811.
Website: http://www.flyingburritobrothers.co.nz

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Featured Hotels

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Ohtel

Inspired by New York’s high-end boutique hotel scene and modern architecture, Ohtel is a small but luxurious place to stay for the traveller who wants a unique Wellington experience. All the mid-century furnishings are from the founder’s private collection, and the hotel itself is built into the base of a steep coastal cliff space. Even the cheapest rooms are equipped with free Wi-Fi, tea and coffee. 

InterContinental Wellington Hotel

The imposing InterContinental Hotel, the best five-star hotel in town, is one of the city's landmarks, with two restaurants, café, pool, sauna, fitness centre, large indoor heated swimming pool, conference and banquet facilities, and business centre. Many of the 231 modern and stylish rooms and suites have excellent harbour views.

Ibis Wellington

This international budget chain hotel is a good-value option for those who want to be close to the action, but don't want to stay in a backpacker's hostel. There's a restaurant for breakfast, lunch or dinner but limited parking.

Museum Art Hotel

Set across from the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, the Museum Art Hotel offers both classic hotel and apartment style accommodation. The chic hotel is peppered with paintings and sculptures, and even comes with an art map for guests wishing to take a self-guided tour of the premises.

Wellesley Boutique Hotel

This charming boutique hotel located in a neo-Georgian building is conveniently located close the shopping and harbour district. Its recently refurbished restaurant offers modern cuisine in a classically elegant setting, whilst its 12 rooms are smart, inviting and warm.

Hotel Waterloo & Backpackers

Right in the centre of Wellington Hotel Waterloo & Backpackers offers a wide selection of accommodation options ranging from eight bunk dormitories to private rooms with en-suite bathrooms. The hotel first opened its doors back in 1937 and underwent a number of extensive revamps after being purchased by its current owners in 1997. Facilities include a bar a café a 24 hour fully equipped kitchen and a travel desk.