The best of Wellington

This year is quickly coming to a close so it’s time for another of The 5th Annual Wellingtonista Awards (or TAWA5).

You have until the 1st of December to vote and winner will be announced on the 3rd of December at Mighty Mighty.

Here’s who I love this year. I’ve left out the sections I didn’t vote in due to lack of personal experience with the places.

Best Cafe

All of the cafes in this section are amazing. I’ve been to them all at least once, but the stand out, the one I make a special trip to the beach for, on a weekday so I can get a seat, is Maranui. Their milkshakes are delicious and their vege big breakfasts are like no other. Plus Freya makes an amazing coffee.

Best BYO

Again, I’ve been to all of these restaurants, and they’re all great. But Namastey is the one I keep telling everyone about. I’ve never actually dined in before because the takeaway specials are damn good. But the food is SO good, particularly my favourite saag paneer.

Best Late Night Experience

Havana Bar on Wigan St is cozy, has an outdoor area that’s warm enough for non smokers to hang out with their smoker friends, and has live jazz on Wednesday nights. Their bar tenders are friendly as well. It’s off the beaten path so it almost feels like a secret just for Wellingtonians, well away from Coutenay Place.

The Caravan

Best Service

I love love love the little Japanese Caravan on Ghuznee Street. Me and Brend are regulars there but even when we weren’t the service was friendly. It helps that their food is delicious and cheap.

Best Regular Entertainment

Easy choice. Derby. I love derby.
Come to the Auckland vs Wellington bout on the 11th of December yeah?

Best Event

I’m sure that if I had been to Webstock I would have voted for it. I think it deserves to win. But as I haven’t been myself I decided to vote for Wellington on a Plate.

It’s food. It’s available at a special rate and often with a special menu. What more is there to say? Wellington has some amazing restaurants.

Best Outdoors Experience

One of the best things about this small city of ours is that you can be standing in the middle of the business district and get to either a bush walk or the water in less than 10 minutes. I love the waterfront.

Best Suburban Destination

Monterey is my pick for the ‘burbs. I’ve only been once, but the mac ‘n’ cheese was delicious. They have paper covering the tables so you can draw while you wait for your food, and they’re active on twitter. I hear they do a pretty mean brunch as well.

Best Art Experience

Monsters was a friends project for her event planning course. But even if it wasn’t I would have voted for it. I loved all of the art included. Particularly the zombie take on Edmonds’ Sure to Rise baking powder.

Best Shopping Experience

This one was pretty hard to pick. Two food choices! Oh no! While I absolutely adore Cultured in Petone (what’s not to love? It’s a shop dedicated to cheese), and the owner Wendy is super nice, I went for Moore Wilson’s Fresh.

My decision was based on the fact the I can walk to Moore Wilson’s, and I can buy cupcakes, bread, and meat.

Most Needed

I’d be pretty happy with anything on this list. But surprise, surprise food wins again. After a mini discussion on whether we needed good mac ‘n’ cheese in the city or donuts we decided on donuts.

I have people that make great mac ‘n’ cheese, but I have no one to make me donuts. :[

Most Missed

Cuba Street Carnival please come back! It was a sad day when we found out that there was not enough funding for the Cuba Street Carnival to go ahead next year. It seems like most of Wellington heads to other areas of the country to celebrate giftmas and New Years and we’re in need of something to look forward to right in the heart of the city when we get back. Cuba Street Carnival has it all.

Best Contribution to the Internet by a Wellingtonian

As stated previously I’ve never been to Webstock. But it hasn’t stopped me from appreciating and being affected by the work Natasha Lampard and Mike Brown do. I think their work has gone some way to make Wellingtonians the crazy internet obsessives they are. And I love it.

Best Thing About Wellington

Maranui and the waterfront already have a vote each from me. So this one goes to Celia. Ousting Kerry Prendergast as Mayor with special votes gave everyone a few very nervous days of waiting. But when she pulled through I did a little dance. Good times. Please don’t pull a Barack on us Celia.