Mr Go's

Mum always told you it was rude to stare – but you’ll be hard-pressed not to when you walk past Mr Go’s on Taranaki Street.

Mr Go's interior waiter customers

Where

Courtenay precinct

Location

59 Taranaki Street
Wellington CBD

Through the restaurant’s all-glass façade, you’ll see a riot of colour: marshmallow pink, peppermint green, red vinyl barstools, warm mood lighting punctuated by neon. It’s retro canteen meets red-light district, about as far from minimalist as you can get.

Then there are the people. Seven nights a week, you can count on Mr Go’s being packed to the rafters. Locals know you don’t wander in expecting to be seated immediately; more likely, they’ll take your phone number and suggest you grab a drink somewhere nearby until you’re summoned. Is it worth the wait? Without a doubt.

Mr Gos eat and drink  asian food restaurant cuisine service staff employees tables people groups waiter waitress 2 resized
Mr Gos food selection asain fusion restaurant
Mr gos asain fusion restaurant bao bun
Mr gos asain fusion restaurant mural seating

Wait times were even more extreme when Mr Go’s first opened in 2016, often stretching into the hours. In 2018, they managed to increase their seating capacity by making the onsite kitchen smaller and opening a second kitchen down the road on Dixon Street, where they now also have a private function space, Ruyi Room.

Officially, Mr Go’s serves “modern pan-Asian” cuisine. Unofficially, the mantra in the kitchen is “quality, quick and tasty”. The menu comprises Taiwanese, Chinese, Korean, Indian, Malaysian, Indonesian and Japanese dishes, and the sharing-friendly portions mean you can sample all of the above in one evening.

You can tailor your meal however you like, but the best approach is for each person to choose a gua bao (steamed bun) for themselves plus two or three other plates to share with the table. Certain dishes have a cult following – there’ll be rioting in the streets if Kung Pao cauliflower, Taiwanese popcorn chicken, kimchi-loaded shoestring fries or cream cheese wontons are ever taken off the menu – but you’ll want to delve deeper, too, because there’s a whole world of flavours to discover here.

We try very hard for the food to be of great quality at the best possible price, and we focus a lot on service. We wanted the service to be almost surprisingly good, way better than people expect from a fast-casual restaurant

Dean White, owner

The drinks menu features a good selection of New Zealand wines and local craft beers, but the real stars are the cocktails. You can keep it classy with mainstays like Visions of Woo (Kaffir lime-infused gin, apricot and lemon) or, for maximum Instragrammability, opt for one of the cocktails served in a novelty tiki mug. Like everything Mr Go’s does, they’re bright, fun, a bit surprising, and so delicious you’ll be happy to join the waiting list for your next one.

Mr gos asain fusion restaurant bar area

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