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Restaurants and Pubs

There are a couple of events that serious food buffs should look out for when visiting Wellington. The New Zealand Wine and Food Festival is typically held in mid-November at the Civic Square. The following week, there is the Martinborough food and wine festival held in Martinborough (one hour north of Wellington), and in February there is the Marlborough Food and Wine festival in Blenheim (in the South Island, but not far from Wellington).

General Note on Bringing Your Own Wine/Alcohol

Restaurants in New Zealand describe themselves either as licensed, which means they are able to sell alcohol, BYO (bring your own), or unlicensed (meaning they can't serve alcohol on the premises). Just to make things confusing some places are both licensed and BYO, meaning they will both sell you alcohol or let you bring your own.

Quite a few restaurants in New Zealand let you take your own wine, which lets you enjoy the wines you really prefer and which you think will best complement your meal. This also tends to cut the price of the meal significantly. Even places that have a liquor license will usually let you bring your own wine/alcohol, but will often charge a 'corkage fee'. Sometimes they will try to dissuade you, but if you are polite and persistant they'll usually agree. A reasonable amount to expect to pay for corkage is no more than 2 dollars. (Even with the corkage fee, it's usually much cheaper to bring your own.) It's always worth calling ahead to check.

Some recommended restaurants in Wellington

Wellington City Restaurants has a great range of restaurants with many located in the Cuba St, Courtenay Place end of town. If you have a favourite restaurant then let us know and we will list it here.

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