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FOOD & DRINK

Ten Next-Level Burgers to Try at Wellington On a Plate 2019

More than 200 inventive burger and bun combinations make up this year's lineup — here are ten worth checking out.
By Florence Cohen
July 30, 2019
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Ten Next-Level Burgers to Try at Wellington On a Plate 2019

More than 200 inventive burger and bun combinations make up this year's lineup — here are ten worth checking out.
By Florence Cohen
July 30, 2019
  shares

From 17–31 August Wellingtonians are in for a right-royal burgalicious treat as their favourite restaurants dish up the most exciting, flavoursome and outrageously moreish meals at a low price. This year, sponsored by Aro Valley craft beer gurus Garage Project, more than 200 burgers have been spectacularly matched to enhance the flavours and bring out the joy in every meal. Wellington On a Plate really is one of the most fun-filled and delicious times for the capital, but make sure to make a booking for your favourite restaurants — spots are always limited.

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SMOKED, SLICKED, PICKLED AND SLICED FROM PICKLE & PIE

Pickle and Pie is one of the coolest new venues to hit the capital, and Wellingtonians are definitely showing their love for it with the WOAP 2019 entry. For a $25 burger, or $35 with Garage Project's matched Weird Flex – a grapefruit, cucumber and celery sour – the simple, wholesome yet slightly daring entrant is sure to be a best seller. With smoked and sliced top sirloin, tiger sauce and pickles on a smoked salt wreck bun, the Smoked, Slicked, Pickled and Sliced certainly lives up to its name. But what is a beer without fries? This entrant automatically offers barbecue spiced crinkle cut fries for that extra tummy bulk.

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DON'T KNOW JACK FROM BAOBAB CAFE

Baobab Cafe has a reputation for providing incredible dairy and gluten-free options, as well as an atmosphere some could consider euphoric. This year the chill cafe is entering WOAP 2019 with Don't Know Jack, not only one of the cheaper options on the WOAP menu at $18, but also one of the most delicious-sounding vegan burgers. Featuring a pulled jackfruit patty with beetroot hummus, spicy date and tamarind chutney, pea and coconut puree and red cabbage slaw in a quirky red beetroot bun, provided with a side of handcut agria wedges — you'll never be hungry again. Matched with Garage Project's Hapi Daze — Pacific Ale, the sweetness and spiciness of the burger should complement the mellow beer.

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MISO PRAWNY FROM PRAVDA CAFE AND GRILL

Unusually for WOAP 2019, we have an entry that doesn't focus solely on chicken, beef or pork. Instead, Pravda Café and Grill has chosen to fuse everything we love into one fantastic burger for a spectacularly reasonable price. For $32 (including a beer) punters can expect a chorizo and prawn patty, celeriac and fennel slaw, carrot kimchi and miso-sumac mayo all held together in an Arobake Turkish bun — forever keeping it local. On the side, you'll find prawn crackers, and a smoked paprika and cayenne chilli oil in a 'do it yourself' bottle — be as ferocious as you like with that chilli oil.

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3 LITTLE PIGGIES FROM TRADE KITCHEN

The Trade Kitchen is offering the best burger for WOAP 2019 for cheese and meat lovers. For $20, a 12-hour slow cooked pork belly with jerk sauce, streaky bacon, pickled baby carrots, cucumber and chipotle on a soft milk bun. But, back to the cheese — a side of ham hock and brie cheese loaded fries comes with every burger, so take advantage in August and head to the Trade Kitchen to get your cheesy fix. Matched with Garage Project's Hapi Daze – Pacific Pale Ale, it'll be a light beer, enhancing your meat and cheese cravings. Certainly not one to miss out on.

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UMAMI BURGER FROM THE RAMEN SHOP

This Wellington sensation is best known for its piping hot bowls of noodles, but this is one Japanese-style burger you'll kick yourself for not trying. Glittering your tastebuds with the Umami Burger, it features free-range chicken, foraged seaweed, sesame miso slaw on a housemade bun for only $12 — one of the cheapest of the WOAP entrants. However, if you want to go for the full hog, try the matched Garage Project beer Kuro alongside your burger — a Japanese-inspired black lager that's sweet, dark and sultry — a match made in The Ramen Shop heaven.

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HOGGY HOGGY HOGGY FROM THE WELSH DRAGON

Known to many as 'the bar on the roundabout', The Welsh Dragon Bar in Wellington is a sacred establishment that not only provides great beer, a great atmosphere but also great food. This year they're entering WOAP with the Hoggy Hoggy Hoggy, an $18 burger that'll send your tastebuds wild. A pork, leek and cumin burger wrapped up in caramelized leeks and rocket on a crusty white bun is the perfect burger for those who want to dip their toe into the WOAP experience. Plus, being a Welsh Bar, all burgers come with a side of fries with either gravy or curry sauce — and what's more, this ultimate burger is matched with Garage Project's Golden Path — a juicy session IPA. Just think of the sweetness of the beer and the caramelized leeks on that very first bite.

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MUCHA TORTA FROM VIVA MEXICO LEFT BANK

Viva Mexico on Left Bank is a hidden gem in Wellington — but this is the place to go for a truly Mexican-stylised burger for WOAP 2019. The Mucha Torta is filled with pulled pork leg in adobo, sour cream, nasty beans, crunchy chicharron and jalapeno pickled pineapple to give it that citrusy spice. All in a telera bread roll, the $20 burger also comes with shoestring fries seasoned in worm salt and Valentina mayonnaise. For an extra $8 enjoy the matched beer – Garage Project's delectable DFA — a chili, mango and lime IPA that's sweet, tangy and just a little wild like your burger.

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4TH PIGS GLASS HOUSE FROM WILSON BARBECUE

Wilson Barbecue at Pop is the absolute highlight of WOAP 2019 this year if you're a foodie looking for something fresh. The 4th Pigs Glass House burger is filled with manuka-smoked pork cheek, with homemade apple-smoked thick cut bacon, slaw and blood orange burger sauce on a bacon glazed potato bun. But if that's not enough to get your senses reeling, the burger is offered underneath a 'glass dome', filled with smoke, smashed to reveal the goodness inside. Matched with Garage Project Hapi Daze – Pacific Pale Ale, a smooth and light beer that won't distract from your incredible burger, Wilson Barbecue at Pop will have you wanting more.

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DA BOMB FROM BETHEL WOODS

For a locally sourced, sustainable burger head on over to Bethel Woods this August. Bethel Woods is offering Da Bomb. For $24 you'll receive cherry smoked St Louis pork ribs with Black Doris barbecue sauce, ivory coleslaw, housemade dill pickles, and Kapiti Havarti in a charcoal potato bun. With every burger purchased you'll also receive a bowl of shoestring fries covered in nacho cheese and cheese snacks — a perfect night out with the gang. Matched with Garage Project's Lola — Cherry Cola Dunkel, you'll immediately taste the Black Doris barbecue sauce with every sip of the beer.

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RAISING THE BAA FROM NEO CAFE AND EATERY

A Willis Street icon, Neo Cafe and Eatery has also joined the 2019 WOAP party with Raising the Baa. Imagine sinking your teeth into a chipotle and lime braised lamb shoulder with smoked brinza cheese, candied streaky bacon, pickled cucumber and cabbage slaw and shredded lettuce. Topping it off, this juicy lamb burger is filled with an aioli, mint and coriander yoghurt, held together on a soft Turkish bun. And once again, Neo offers the real deal here, with exclusive parmesan fries with every burger purchased. Plus, Garage Project's Weird Flex — a grapefruit, cucumber and celery sour has been matched to enhance those citrusy tastes. Get it while you can.

Published on July 30, 2019 by Florence Cohen

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