WellingtonEat & Drink
The interior of The Botanist in Lyall Bay. The counter has a fake bush attached, and the floor is a black and white pattern.

For the love of vegetables

A margarita pizza on a white round plate on a table at Nolita's, a plant-based pizza and pastaria on Cuba Street in Te Aro, Wellington.
A waiter pours 4 glasses of wine for  4 people sitting at a table in Hillside Kitchen.
A variety of gourmet, vegan doughnuts available at Belèn Vegan Bakery in Wellington, New Zealand.
A plate of three plant-based fritters, garnished with micro-greens with a fork and knife next to it on a table at The Botanist, a restaurant in Lyall Bay, Wellington.
A slice of chocolate cake with white frosting and a flat white latte in a red mug on a wood table at Sweet Release, a plant-based bakery in Te Aro, Wellington.
Inside Aunty Mena's Vegetarian Restaurant & Café, a popular Malaysian restaurant on Cuba Street in Te Aro, Wellington. A worker wearing black hands a dish to a smiling customer at a large wooden table and the restaurant's name is graffitied in big lime gr
A margarita pizza on a white round plate on a table at Nolita's, a plant-based pizza and pastaria on Cuba Street in Te Aro, Wellington.

Nolita

203 Cuba Street, Te Aro, Wellington

It’s the first plant-based pizza and pastaria in New Zealand. Wellington’s buzzing Cuba Street is home to Nolita. The chefs at this cosy restaurant do things a little differently. There’s 48-hour fermented sourdough that’s hand-stretched to enhance flavour and digestibility. They also produce house-made vegan cheese, pasta, and bread. The cashew mozzarella is delicately fermented using dairy-free culture. With this attention to detail, you know your pizza, pasta, or burger experience will be full of flavour.

Nolita
A waiter pours 4 glasses of wine for  4 people sitting at a table in Hillside Kitchen.

Hillside Kitchen

241 Tinakori Road, Thorndon, Wellington

Hillside Kitchen is an award-winning fine-dining restaurant with a twist – it’s completely meat-free. Instead of animal products, the restaurant focuses on sustainable, locally-grown produce. It uses ingredients foraged from Wellington’s green areas and grown in its own garden, taking the concept of farm-to-table to another level.

Seasonality is key, which means the Hillside menu is constantly changing. Diners can choose between a five and seven-course tasting menu when they book. But the components of each course are a surprise until they’re seated at their table.

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A variety of gourmet, vegan doughnuts available at Belèn Vegan Bakery in Wellington, New Zealand.

Belén Vegan Bakery

104 Lambton Quay, Wellington

At Belén Bakery, vegans never have to miss out on the magic of a fresh-baked croissant or a light, fluffy doughnut. Since starting out as a stall at Newtown Market in 2021, Belén has grown to include two central-city locations. Its Lambton Quay and Courtenay Place stores sell everything from doughnuts and brioche to “mince” pies and sandwiches. All are without any animal products. The menu changes monthly and always includes delicious sweets and savoury treats.

Belén Vegan Bakery
A plate of three plant-based fritters, garnished with micro-greens with a fork and knife next to it on a table at The Botanist, a restaurant in Lyall Bay, Wellington.

The Botanist

219 Onepu Road, Lyall Bay, Wellington

The Botanist brings the best in innovative plant-based cuisine to the south coast of Wellington. Sitting on Lyall Bay, The Botanist serves views of the sea with its vegan and vegetarian-friendly menu. A sunny courtyard on the other side of the building allows for a meal sheltered from the sea breeze. You’ll find innovative dishes on the menu like eggplant steak, battered banana blossom ‘fish’, and marinated Thai ‘beef’ salad.  There’s also a selection of six rotating craft beer taps, botanical cocktails, and organic wines.

The Botanist
A slice of chocolate cake with white frosting and a flat white latte in a red mug on a wood table at Sweet Release, a plant-based bakery in Te Aro, Wellington.

Sweet Release

99 Manners Street, Te Aro, Wellington

It’s a café where ingredients and recipes are carefully screened for your benefit. If you are dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, or strictly vegan, and want something sweet, you are in luck. The bakers at Sweet Release make most of the treats from scratch. The food on offer is allergy-friendly comfort food. It’s not all sweet either — the menu offers plenty of savoury options including toasties, loaded fries, and mac and cheese. The Sweet Release team also offer a monthly night market called The Vegan Vault, and the vegan meat subscription service Not a Butcher.

Sweet Release
Inside Aunty Mena's Vegetarian Restaurant & Café, a popular Malaysian restaurant on Cuba Street in Te Aro, Wellington. A worker wearing black hands a dish to a smiling customer at a large wooden table and the restaurant's name is graffitied in big lime gr

Aunty Mena’s

167 Cuba Street, Te Aro, Wellington

As the name would suggest, Aunty Mena’s has the warm familiarity of a close relative’s home cooking. The little restaurant is a mecca for Wellington’s vegetarians and vegans. The flavour combinations and hearty portions are some of the best ways to convince the fervent carnivore in your life to ‘go vege’.  The curries, laksas, dumpling soups, and stir-fried noodles all have legions of fans. The vegetarian nuggets are world famous in Wellington, too, with many fooled into thinking there is a secret supply of chicken in the kitchen. There’s not – everything is proudly plant-based.  

Aunty Mena Vegetarian Cafe — Facebook