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Wellington on a Plate reveals exciting schedule that makes eating out inventive and fun

By MiNDFOOD

Nawabi Galouti Crossiant by One80 Restaurant, part of WOAP's Burger Wellington 2024.
Nawabi Galouti Crossiant by One80 Restaurant, part of WOAP's Burger Wellington 2024.
Two hundred tanatalising burgers and more than 100 dining events make up the Capital City's annual month-long celebration of eating out.

The biggest culinary festival in the country returns, and this year the theme for Visa Wellington on a Plate festival is “Play With Your Food”, sparking a hugely varied schedule of gastronomical celebration.

Tacos from an internationally renowned chef, a hāngi at Government House, and a host of playful culinary crossovers are just a taste of what’s in store.

Marking its 16th year, the event runs from 1-31 August. It started in 2009 with just 35 venues and now involves more than 200 venues each year.

200 different burgers are also being being served from 5-25 August  for ‘Burger Wellington,’ part of the event that is a particular highlight as chefs run with the theme for some surprising flavours and eating ideas.

Hāngi Master Rewi Spraggon and Simon Peacock, Head Chef at Government House. A free event hosted by Governor-General Rt Hon Dame Cindy Kiro will offer guests the change to eat kai cooked in the grounds of Government House.

Tasty tacos to a hāngi at Government House

The festival will swing into action on the opening day with three pop-up events taking place in the same block, just off Cuba St in central Wellington.

Ex-Noma chef Rosio Sanchez (Denmark/Mexico/USA) will be serving up her world-famous tacos at Loretta as part of the Chef Collaboration Series. There are no bookings for this event, giving everyone the opportunity to taste what this global superstar of food is cooking up.

Around the corner, Garage Project will be hosting Matsuri Madness, a Japanese-inspired party featuring hambāgu, yakitori and other matsuri (festival) food to celebrate the launch of their Burger Wellington brew Red Dog.

Those keen for dessert will be able to head to Swan Lane where Kāpiti Ice Cream and Good Fortune’s Affogato Caravan will be parked up and offering mouth-watering affogatos, complete with an edible cookie cup.

The Jenga Jelly-Tip by The Library, part of WOAP’s Burger Wellington 2024.

From street food to fine-dining

Visa Wellington On a Plate Head of Programming, Beth Brash, says the opening events will set the tone for the festival.

“Rosio’s reputation as the ‘Taco Queen of Copenhagen’ is well known in the food world and many viewers may have seen her appearances on shows such as Ugly Delicious and Somebody Feed Phil, so we’re really excited to give Kiwis the opportunity to try her food – and they’ll only need to head over to Cuba Street to do so” she says.

“We’ve also got genuine once-in-a-lifetime opportunities on the cards for this year with Hāngi Master Rewi Spraggon laying down a hāngi at Government House for Hākari Fusion – a free event hosted by Governor-General Rt Hon Dame Cindy Kiro. There’s also the chance to enjoy a mid-winter feast, cooked by fire under the stars at Stonehenge Aotearoa.”

Other highlights include The Food Fight Night at Foxglove where five courses of gourmet American classics will be served ring side at a pro wrestling event, Little Beer Quarter will transform into The Golden Gnome Tavern for the month and host a Dungeons and Dragons themed event, while Graze Wine Bar’s Food With Your Play offers a seven-course feast inspired by the works of the bard William Shakespeare.

Tickets are available for Visa cardholders from 17 June, and General Release tickets go on sale from 21 June 2024.

See the full schedule at visawoap.com.

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