Visa Wellington on a Plate’s finalists have been named, showing off some of the capital’s finest and most innovative dining spots. Over three categories, Dine Wellington, Garage Project presents Burger Wellington, and Cocktail Wellington, judges now have the arduous (not really, though) task of pouring over burgers, cocktails, and fine-dining dishes.
Finalists announced were voted in by festival-goers, with winners being announced next week.
The finalists are:
Charley Noble: ‘Artemis’ - A savoury espresso martini with vodka, coffee liqueur and chocolate bitters, accompanied by candied bacon and marshmallow.
Pravda: ‘Schmoke and a Pancake’ - Manuka-smoked maple and walnut Old Fashioned, combining New Zealand manuka wood-smoke with bourbon, maple syrup and house-made walnut bitters, accompanied by ‘Old New Zealand’ Dutch pancakes served with maple syrup and candied walnuts.
The Crab Shack: ‘One Night in Bangkok’ - Lighthouse gin, Six Barrel Soda kaffir lime, pineapple and lemongrass syrup, lime and lemongrass foam, topped with a crispy pineapple wafer and a pineapple and chilli liquid sphere, accompanied by barbecued kaffir lime prawn and chilli pineapple skewers.
Lulu: ‘You Had Me at Heihei’ - Fourteen-year-old rum, gunpowder rum, pineapple and mandarin shrub with house cream of coconut, burnt, rum-soaked lime, smoked cinnamon and grated nutmeg, accompanied by Lulu’s fried heihei pops.
Hanging Ditch: ‘Salt Cream Acid Bubbles’ - Pavlova-inspired cocktail using house-made spiced rum, peach, cream and egg whites, topped with salt and vinegar flavoured bubbles, accompanied by a classic chip and mayonnaise sandwich.
Field & Green: ‘Cassola’ - Baked Zany Zeus ricotta and orange zest souffle served with marmalade and chocolate sauce.
Grace Patisserie: ‘The Egg’ - Whittaker’s white chocolate coconut mousse, passionfruit curd, mango banana mint coulis served with Zany Zeus lemon creme fraiche, hazelnut dacquoise and kataifi.
Wholesale Boot Company (WBC): Aromatic master stock braised beef short rib, sizzling choy sum, and fragrant Waikanae crab fried rice.
Apache: ‘Sea, Land, Sky’ - Freedom Farm confit pork belly, caramelised salmon, tea-soaked quail egg, green apple kimchi, Vietnamese herbs, and shallots with pork crackling.
Arborist Rooftop Bar & Eatery: Smoked black bean and corn hushpuppy tostadas with Zany Zeus smoked brinza, tomatillo salsa verde, Wellington Chocolate Factory mole foam, Shoots NZ microgreens, gunpowder rum-soaked and burnt limes and agave chilli toasted seeds.
Garage Project presents Burger Wellington
Bellamy’s: ‘The Coalition’ - Prime Angus beef with ‘red’ onion, ‘green’ jalapenos, ‘black’ garlic, boozy cheese sauce and pickles in a potato bun, with thick-cut fries. Matched with Garage Project Bliss - Backyard Lager.
Leroy’s Bar: ‘Lucy’s Got Dragon Breath’ -Bacon and cheddar stuffed beef patty with chicken-fried onion rings, dill pickles, American cheese, cheddar mayonnaise, barbecue sauce in a milk bun, with homemade barbecue kettle fries and onion dip. Matched with Garage Project Bliss - Backyard Lager.
Sweet Release: ‘Jacked Up’ - Barbecued jackfruit seitan rib with coleslaw, potato chips and house-made butter and aioli on a brioche bun.
Apache: ‘Surf & Turf’ - Wagyu beef patty with tiger prawns, braised Wagyu brisket, egg sheet, spicy Vietnamese salad, garlic noir mayo, crackling and XO salt in a turmeric milk bun, with numbing crisps and nahn-jim mayo. Matched with Garage Project Kuro - Japanese-inspired black lager.
Cafe Medici: ‘Prawn Underbelly’ - King prawn toast with caramelised pork belly, Asian pickles, house-made sweet chilli dressing in a sesame and buttermilk bun with toffee crackling and Sichuan pepper fries. Matched with Garage Project Hapi Daze - Pacific Pale Ale.