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For worthy eating and drinking experiences around Wellington, NZ (and the greater region) – you can also catch Heather out and about hosting Zest Food Tours around the city…

Archive for the tag “Leeds Street”

Fortune Favours

It’s taken me a while to decide if Fortune Favours (the bold, the brave, the lucky etc…) ticks all my boxes after a couple of mediocre food experiences on first visits (although the ambience, decor and beers were all good). However I feel like they’ve found their groove now, and they definitely have oodles of Wellington character.

Fortune favours

Downstairs is a darker and cooler environment, while upstairs is light bright and full of brewing equipment, decks and leaners. I like that they’ve taken on an old furniture-makers building and retained the character and history of it, melding nicely into the Leeds Street laneway vibe.

I also like that one of their features is cheese and beer matching – a little different to the norm. With many cheese dishes on the menu, and a dedicated meat and cheese bar downstairs.

Having tried a few dishes, I find the share boards to be the way to go here, with the ability to choose your own meats and cheeses.

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With Shannon Thorpe (ex-Good George Brewing) partnered with the resources of the Wellington Hospitality Group (Munchen, Bethel Woods, Coene’s, Gaslight and loads of others), and local brewer Dale Cooper on board (ex-Black Dog), you won’t go thirsty here any time soon. And can probably expect some interesting brews over time.

I enjoyed a sip of all the beers on the paddle (yep worlds most useless drinker!), then settled on a dark beer, whose name totally escapes me at the moment, but was light while still having a rich flavour.

FF glass.jpg

Definitely worth a visit, and particularly fun in a group.

7 days from 11am til late.

7 Leeds Street

 

Shepherd & Al’s Best Ugly Bagels

Shepherd

Shepherd has opened in Leeds Street next to Pomodoro Pizza, brought to us by Shepherd Elliott (Ti KoukaLeeds Street Bakery) and Sean Golding (Golding’s free dive bar).

shepherd-entry

Sean and Shep wanted to maintain the laneway vibe and create a place that provided all styles – a wine, a bite, a meal, an interesting beer, a shared catchup with friends, or just dessert and coffee. A place to come together.

The space is actually the original canteen of the Hannahs Shoe Factory (and a large party-central student flat between times!), so the perfect setting. And has are a number of different areas and seating styles, including some at the kitchen counter so you can see exactly how its all done (no secrets here).

The food is light, tasty and extremely well executed, with the cheapest item at $4 (oyster), and the most expensive $28 (you will need a couple of courses though).They are also being playful by combining ingredients and mixing courses in ways you might not expect (a custard entree? pikelets with house made cheese, salted tamarillo and roasted hazelnuts? pulled pork with apple, fennel and red curry mustard?).

The drinks reflect recent travel, with some interesting big (alcohol, size and price) Californian craft beers on the list. Alongside a whole bunch of ‘sour and interesting’ and some Garage Project, Yeastie Boys (the Rex Attitude Peat-Smoked Strong Golden Ale was really memorable), 8 Wired, Panhead and ParrotDog, etc.

From 5.30pm Wednesday to Sunday, with some bookings taken (via phone for the moment, but watch out for a website and online booking system soon).

Al’s Best Ugly Bagels

Best Ugly is fast food at its best – Montreal bagels (lighter then their New York cousins), hand rolled, poached, wood-fired, and delivered to you with a range of traditional and kiwi toppings in open sandwich style. So no jaw-cracking chewing here (yay!). The likes of peanut butter and jam, rueben (below), Stewart Island salmon, marmite,  Zany Zeus cream cheese etc.

It’s a pretty slick process a’la’Starbucks where you order, then move along to the delivery counter and listen for your name, then see if you can wangle a stool at the wall or window. Be prepared to take-away as there isn’t much seating, but what there is, does turn over reasonably quickly.

Check out the daily bagel and drinks boards too, interesting stuff.

7 days, 7am to 3pm. Swan Lane behind Floraditas (also newly earthquake-strengthened and with some new eye-catching dishes alongside the time-honoured favourites). Full laneway updates here.

bagels-rueben

 

 

 

 

 

Hanging Ditch cocktails

Tucked in beside Goldings Free Dive Bar is the newest addition in the Eva-Leeds laneway – the Hanging Ditch cocktail bar.

The bar is compact with a nice vibe, and spaces for lounging, or more upright pursuits (like lifting one’s glass), and a short menu for food and drink alike (there are wines and beers as well, but it was the cocktail’s I’d gone to check out). The point to the short menu is so it can be creative and changed regularly.

The cocktails include very local ingredients (Fix and Fogg smoke and fire peanut butter, WCF Peruvian chocolate, Six Barrel salad cucumber and mint soda), as well as some more unusual (organic bee pollen, umami salt, salted pistachio orgeat).

The food leaned savoury and a little retro (popcorn shrimp, crumbed camembert or salami toastie), but given we are on our way to dinner, I’ll have to return to check these out.

The Flowers’ Peaches and Cream cocktail with organic bee pollen, peach, lemon juice, sugar-free soda and albumen (or egg white for us lay folk) was sweetly unsweet with pleasing bits of texture courtesy of the pollen. And the Earth, Wind, Peanut Butter and Fire was smoky, tangy and moorish.

The focus of the bar is the forest of 2m long bungies from the ceiling holding all their myriads of bottles (short staff need not apply!), the fuller ones the lower hanging fruit, so to speak. Pretty funky, and a definite talking point. I’m sure I’ve read about the same concept overseas, but it may well be the first of its kind in Godzone.

A fun addition to the laneway. I’m definitely going back.

Tuesday to Sunday 3pm til midnight.

14 Leeds Street.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goldings craft beer

Goldings is everything reported previously by Word on the Street.

The full name Goldings Free Dive is because they’re not affiliated to anyone in terms of product, and immediately put me in mind of New York and the local ‘dive’ bars over there my friend so loves.

Goldings decor

Hidden away down Leeds Street (between Dixon and Ghuznee through the Hannahs Apartment complex), Goldings is another successful launch into the Wellington craft beer scene.

There are lots of quirky decorations to keep one amused while watching the names being updated on the beer board as the taps change over (rubber duckies, coloured buckets for lights, an old cellphone taped up the wall by an exit sign…..), food is by Pizza Pomodoro (how can you go wrong with that?),and the service friendly and welcoming.

Goldings pizza

A variety of beers and wines were imbibed over a very pleasant catchup with both old and new friends. The Tuatara beers were probably reasonably well known, but the Liberty Citra was something different and interesting (considered a bit fruity for one bloke in the group, who shall remain nameless but has been seen in possession of a girly-looking cocktail a time or two in the past…), and we didn’t quite get to the Liberty Sauvignon Bomb.  Maybe next time.

Go check it out.

14 Leeds Street, Wellington

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