Wellington is famous for its dining scene with cuisines from every corner of the globe being served up by world-class eateries. Here are our top picks of restaurants your conference delegates will love
Ortega Fish Shack
16 Majorbanks Street, Mount Victoria , Wellington
Ortega is one of those restaurants equally beloved by locals and visitors. Described by one reviewer as ‘fine dining in disguise', it is upmarket dining with a laidback, good-time vibe. Ortega's aesthetic is beachside bistro: weatherboard shutters, mosaic-tiled floors, walls covered with nautical paraphernalia and mounted fish.
Despite how good the steak is, Ortega is a seafood restaurant serving up fresh and sustainably-caught New Zealand kaimoana (seafood). The menu changes each day, depending on what fish is available but whatever comes in, there's always ceviche on the menu – fresh raw fish with Asian herbs, crispy shallots and ginger-spiked dressing. But don't stop there, explore the descriptive chapters of the drinks menu and discover something you didn't know you felt like drinking.
1 Post Office Square, Wellington
Showcasing wood-fired cooking, local ingredients, organic wine and craft beer, Charley Noble is the perfect place to experience Wellington on a plate.
Their Zesti wood-fired chargrill and rotisserie is the first of its kind in New Zealand from which the delicious smoky flavour details meats and vegetables throughout their menu.
Also a haven for lovers of seafood, Charley Noble features freshly shucked oysters, fire-grilled line-caught market fish and a wine to match every dish. Charley Noble has won awards for both their food and drinks menus.
Bellamys by Logan Brown
1 Molesworth Street, Pipitea, Wellington
A premium and quintessentially New Zealand dining experience, this is your opportunity to dine at the Beehive, where you might spot some Kiwi politicians if you’re lucky.
Combining New Zealand Parliament’s rich history with the legacy of award-winning Wellington restaurant Logan Brown.
Previously open for parliamentarian's exclusive use only, Bellamys by Logan Brown is now open to anyone wishing to experience the buzz and incredible food, but you must make a reservation with the restaurant in advance.
6 Swan Lane, Te Aro, Wellington
Noble Rot is an award-winning wine bar, founded by a group of local sommeliers and restaurateurs and nestled between two of the country’s great wine regions of Marlborough and Martinborough.
Tucked away down Swan Lane, Noble Rot has a lovely, intimate atmosphere and is the kind of place where one glass of wine can easily turn into two and then into dinner. Speaking of dinner, the award-winning menu is innovative with the kind of ease and simplicity that comes only with great skill. Noble Rot are also known for their attentive and very knowledgeable service.
Boulcott Street Bistro
99 Boulcott Street, Te Aro, Wellington
Generally regarded as one of Wellington’s finest restaurants, Boulcott Street Bistro is led by acclaimed and award-winning chef Rex Morgan.
Opened in 1991 in historic Plimmer House, a charming inner-city Victorian cottage, the restaurant is warm and inviting. The Bistro has a long-established reputation for serving timelessly classic bistro dishes using the freshest seasonal produce and contemporary flavours.
Described on the menu as a ‘BSB Classic’ the aged fillet of beef with Béarnaise sauce, red wine jus and hand-cut, double-cooked fries is a dish that has been consistently popular since the restaurant first opened.
Queens Wharf, Wellington
Shed 5 is located within one of the oldest wharf stores in Lambton Harbour. Its position by the water's edge and an in-house fishmonger make Shed 5 Wellington's premier seafood restaurant. The best, freshest seafood is sourced from the fish markets early each morning. On the broad-ranging, comfort food menu, seafood definitely stands out. Dine under the dark-wood beams amongst sparkling table wear or enjoy the sunshine in the outdoor courtyard.
36 Customhouse Quay, Wellington
Only a couple of months after opening, this upmarket establishment was awarded a spot in Cuisine's top 100 New Zealand restaurants. Each day, Atlas build a menu reflecting seasonal sensitivity and the best produce on offer. The menu details the distance many of the ingredients have travelled to your plate including native herbs (within 10km), wild shot venison (20km), winter truffles (262km) and sea urchin from Bluff (1028km). Their butter is churned in-house and you can find the chefs, pickling, smoking, curing, and fermenting throughout the seasons.
Pravda Cafe & Grill
107 Customhouse Quay, Wellington
Set in a heritage building with atmospheric high ceilings and expanses of dark wood and marble, Pravda is a Wellington institution.
In Russian, Pravda means 'the truth', which is reflected in the eatery’s focus on honest, produce-led dishes that use the very best New Zealand ingredients.The daytime menus offer café favourites given a modern spin, including their world-famous (in Wellington) cheese scones.
By night, Pravda is Wellington’s best steakhouse, with a carefully curated selection of exceptional cuts of the highest quality New Zealand beef and lamb, alongside a modern bistro menu with dishes that offer something for everyone.
70 Courtenay Place, Te Aro, Wellington
Dragonfly is a contemporary Asian restaurant, bar and courtyard with rustic Asian influences. The menu is inspired by the owners’ favourite eating experiences throughout Asia and features classic dishes with a contemporary twist that are designed to be shared.
The red duck curry is a must-try, and definitely order some dumplings. There’s an excellent wine list with aromatic New Zealand wines that pair beautifully with the food, but make sure you take a look at Dragonfly’s cocktail menu in which Asian herbs and ingredients like lemongrass, lychee, coriander and ginger are incorporated into classic cocktails. Book a table in the chic and relaxed dining space indoors or if you’re feeling social, dine outside in their lively and beautifully lit-up courtyard – or pop in for a drink.
Field & Green
262 Wakefield Street, Te Aro, Wellington
Award-winning Field & Green is a personable eatery where chef Laura Greenfield puts great care and thought into her food.
Specialising in European soul food – think classy comfort food with dishes like smoked fish kedgeree, fish finger sandwiches but reworked with fresh, local and seasonal ingredients. There’s a menu of house-churned ice cream with 17 flavours ranging from homely vanilla to the more adventurous saffron and cardamom.
The service at Field & Green is always warm and welcoming, and the restaurant space is classic and simple with lovely personal touches – the mid-century bone and silver cutlery is a family heirloom.