Italiano in zee capital

It goes without saying that Italian is one of my favourite cuisines. Even living in Italy for 6 months didn’t put me off; in fact I think I grew to love it even more. Pizza would be one of my favourite inventions ever (yes, even with pineapple); I love everything on the spectrum from fancy gourmet pizzas right down to the cheap and nasty. Pasta, I am a little more fussy. However, when it’s done well it is also hard to resist. Here are some of Welly’s best offerings:

Scopa: Amazing on so many levels. The décor is awesome, especially if you nab a window seat (looking out to one of Wellington’s busiest pedestrian intersections) and the staff are always so friendly and welcoming. I always get pizza when I’m at Scopa (I have to confess it is always the same flavour too) as the bases are just perfect. For dessert (or a mid-afternoon treat) I can’t go past the hot chocolates; so rich and decadent, a treat every time.

CinCin: Perfect for a date night, CinCin is quaint, fun and yummy. I’m less set on the pizza here, as sometimes their pasta options are too god to pass up. They also do a killer tiramisu. If you visit on a Friday or Saturday night, the live music is a great addition to the already excellent vibe. Prices are what you would expect and quality always exceeds my expectations.


Fratelli: Home to some of the best pasta in Welly, I would never order anything else. I love the homely feel here and the staff are so great. On Mondays and Tuesdays there is a $40 feast which includes a 3 course meal – such good value. The tiramisu here is my favourite in Wellington – probably because it was more focused on the chocolate than the cream.

Ombra: Steering clear of the pizza/pasta combo altogether, Ombra would have to be one of Wellington’s most loved and dearest restaurants. Poised elegantly on the corners of Cuba and Vivian Streets, Ombra serves tapas and manages high turnover while maintaining class exceptionally well. The staff are attentive and informed; full of recommendations and pairings if you want them. It is a good spot for almost any occasion, although the dollar signs do tend to add up by the end.

1154 is the other CBD pasta spot which jumps to mind. It is cheap and the service is quick. Located opposite Scopa on a vibrant, bustling corner it sure makes a good spot for people watching. For takeaway pizza I would always visit Pomodoro or Tommy Millions – which also sells pizza by the slice.

Heading out of town, y’all should know my appreciation for Cicio Cacio in Newtown. Authentic, fresh and ambient – it gets me every time. For pizza though, Med Foods puts up a good show. Last but not least, La Bella Italia in Petone serves pizza that has won international awards – hard to argue with that right?

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