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Neo Café Named Winner Of Dine Wellington Two Years In A Row In Visa Wellington On A Plate Festival Awards

Neo Café & Eatery and Pravda Café & Grill were the big winners in the 2023 Visa Wellington On a Plate Festival Awards. More than 5000 Diners were out in force to rate Dine Wellington and Cocktail Wellington entries, with judges assessing the finalists over the last week. Alongside the Festival’s Dine and Cocktail Wellington offering, more than 100 Events and Pop Ups brought maximum flavour and fun to the capital this May.

Visa Wellington On a Plate Festival Director Sarah Meikle says it was great to see culinary creativity and innovation at every price point, showing that any venue can throw their hat in and be in the running for the top festival award.

“Thank you to all the talented chefs and bartenders who entered Dine and Cocktail Wellington, and all the incredible venues who decided to test the boundaries by putting on some truly exceptional events,”

“Our hats off to Neo Café for winning Dine Wellington two years in a row with such a fun play on flavour, and to Pravda Café & Grill with a cocktail that embraced this year’s festival theme of Breaking the Mould,” she adds.

The May events programme of Visa Wellington On a Plate saw a mix of offerings that ranged from pay-as-you-feel Pop Ups to ticketed events for some of the best culinary talent in Wellington and the word. The awards also recognised events in the Festival programme that were exceptionally innovative and embraced this year’s theme.

Sarah adds, “We were thrilled with the calibre of festival experiences this year which saw the return of the Chef Collaboration Series presented by Singapore Airlines which gave the festival a lift with international stars teaming up with local icons for some spectacular experiences.”

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Visa Wellington On a Plate Head of Programming Beth Brash says it feels good to bring back the event awards to recognise people who are pushing the boundaries and creating events that set the festival apart from others across the country.

“What makes Visa Wellington On a Plate different is that it’s not just the usual three-course set menu, Festival Events are delicious experiences where people can be entertained, learn, or simply connect with others who share a love of food.”

Award categories included ‘Most Innovative’ and the ‘Best Use of Theme’ which for 2023 was ‘Breaking the Mould’. The winners are:

DINE WELLINGTON AWARDS 2023

Winner: Would You Could You Wasabi Pie from Neo Café & Eatery

Second place: Absolutely Avo-licious from Zelati Dessert Cafe

Third place: Sharing is Caring from Damascus

COCKTAIL WELLINGTON AWARDS 2023

Winner: Blue Gold from Pravda Café & Grill

Second place: La Nouvelle Façon from Oak & Vine Restaurant

Third place: Wrecking Ball from The Lobby Lounge

MOST INNOVATIVE AWARDS - MAY EDITION 2023

Dine: Absolutely Avo-licious from Zelati Dessert Cafe

Cocktail: La Nouvelle Façon from Oak & Vine Restaurant

Event: Abstraction by Graze x Teresa

BEST USE OF THEME AWARDS - MAY EDITION 2023

Dine: Queer Eye for the Fungi from Hippopotamus

Cocktail: Blue Gold from Pravda Café & Grill

Event: ORIENTable by Capitol x KC Cafe

The August edition of Visa Wellington On a Plate runs from 11 - 27 August 2023 and will feature Beervana and Burger Wellington presented by Garage Project, as well as beer and burger events and Pop Ups.

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