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Friday, September 04, 2009

Harbourside Market, Wellington, New Zealand

I was blessed with good weather during my weekend in Wellington.

On Sunday morning the sun was shining, and though the air was brisk at about 9C, it was a gorgeous day to be out and about and taking in the local markets.

When I'd first visited Wellington two years ago, I'd delighted in the Waitangi Park markets. Today the markets have expanded both in size and offering, including gourmet artisans and purveyors, and the markets have been renamed Harbourside Market.

My market day began with a Harbourside Market guided tour, a chance for 15 people to visit selected stalls, learn more about their products and undertake a taste-test or two.

We stepped our way through the meandering crowds, and were slowly led towards the water. As we left the last of the stalls, I was confused as to where we were going until I saw the sign saying "Fresh fish this way".


Fresh fish sold straight off the boat! Oh I was entranced by the sight!

We were told that Nino collects the fish from a number of different fishing boats to sell direct to the public. Usually there are at least two boats, but today there was only one. I loved the whole concept of buying fish whilst queuing on the wharf, and the fish themselves looked superbly fresh and utterly magnificent.



Sergent Baker (thanks Forager!)
Red gurnard (thanks Mrs Pig Flyin'!)




Giant crab

Orange roughy

John Dory

Gutting and cleaning the fish

Giant crab

We continued on back to the main markets, taking in samples of lemon and ginger syrup, bacon, olives, wheatgrass juice and breads. Here are a selection of photos from the tour and my wanderings afterward...

Rewana health loaves on the chopping board
and burnt sugar pudding on the plate

Squeezing the wheatgrass to make juice

Wheatgrass juice

Buying vegetables


(and I totally would've bought the Thanks Shallot teatowels if they'd been for sale)

Freshly roasted chestnuts

Smoked venison salami

Sampling black pudding, garlic bacon and pork rissoles


Olive olives

Urenika blue Maori potatoes

Shoppers choosing apples

A watermelon dress!

Pork sausages and crackling

Finding the perfect orange

Trimming cauliflower


Purple cauliflower

Market shoppers


Wholemeal bread from Simply Paris

Homemade jams and chutneys
I love this stall and always buy a dozen jars, each only about NZ$3

Grab Your Fork joined the Harbourside Market Tour as a guest of Positively Wellington Tourism for Wellington on a Plate. For more information on Wellington, check out http://www.wellingtonnz.com.

Wellington on a Plate ran from 17-30 August 2009. Next year's festival dates have already been confirmed as 14-29 August 2010.

View Larger Map

Harbourside Market
Corner of Cable St and Barnett St (beside Te Papa)
Wellington, New Zealand

Open every Sunday morning
7.30am - 1pm in winter
7.30am - 2pm in summer

Go back to Wellington on a Plate Day OneRead the next Wellington on a Plate entry

Read about my Wellington eats in 2007

Related Grab Your Fork posts:
Harbourside Market - formerly Waitangi Park Market (Aug07)
13 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 9/04/2009 03:14:00 am


  • At 9/04/2009 9:24 am, Blogger Stephcookie said…

    Fish sold off the boat, you know for sure it's super fresh! Love it! I've never seen purple cauliflower before, I'm oddly attracted to anything purple. It's great how the homemade jams are made with all those random different jars :)

  • At 9/04/2009 12:57 pm, Blogger Barbara said…

    You can't just sell fresh fish off the boat in NZ. You need to be a licensed fish receiver as this supplier obviously is. Nice photo essay Helen.

  • At 9/04/2009 1:24 pm, Blogger Forager said…

    Other than in Asia where anything is sold anywhere, I've only seen fish sold off the boat in Helsinki. Oh, and the unnamed fish photo between the squid and the octopus is called Sergeant Baker here. I caught one recently. Tasty but very bony :(

  • At 9/04/2009 7:53 pm, Anonymous Mrs Pig Flyin' said…

    I think that's a gurnard instead of sergeant baker. Gurnard has a very distinct head, common in NZ and Aus, very much in season now, and I just had one for lunch today :p

  • At 9/04/2009 10:05 pm, Anonymous divemummy said…

    the shallot tea-towels were a hoot - and loved the watermelon dress - very apt Helen ; )

  • At 9/05/2009 12:49 am, Anonymous chocolatesuze said…

    so did you like the wheatgrass juice? and uncooked octopus freaks me out...

  • At 9/05/2009 8:20 am, Blogger A cupcake or two said…

    Markets are great. Especially the tasting :o)

  • At 9/05/2009 11:38 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Visiting fresh produce markets is one of my favourite passtime while on holiday! Thanks Shallots tea towel!! I like and I want!!

  • At 9/05/2009 12:21 pm, Blogger Julie said…

    Such beautiful pics, I feel like I was there! I was gonna ask about that wheatgrass juice also, how was it?

  • At 9/05/2009 1:06 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Wow talk about FRESH!! Hee hee the second giant crab photo looks like he is just looking out to see and pondering about life...

  • At 9/06/2009 12:07 am, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Stephcookie - The purple cauliflower was so alluring and I presume your love of the colour explains your gorgeous wardrobe? :) I have so many of those jams now overflowing in my pantry. Can't wait to get into them all.

    Hi Barbara - Oh absolutely, a license would be essential. There was a lovely sense of atmosphere with the crowd clustered around the fishing boat, and the water lapping up against the dock. Glad you enjoyed the photos!

    Hi Forager - Thanks for the info, although Mrs Pig Flyin' thinks it might be a red gurnard. I think the gurnard might be correct. Oh thank goodness for helpful Grab Your Fork readers!

    Hi Mrs Pig Flyin' - Hmmm I think you might be correct. I did notice it does have a very distinct head. Well done you on your fish knowledge and thanks for the correction.

    Hi divemummy - I totally wanted one of those tea towels, and yes, the watermelon dress would suit me down to a T :)

    Hi chocolatesuze - It tasted like grass, or as you might say, "it tastes like green". lol. But even the stallholder said "it doesn't taste nice but it's really good for you".

    Hi A Cupcake or Two - Weekend markets are always fun. They combine all the good things in life: sun, food, conversations and shopping!

    Hi Ellie - I know. I was totally ready to buy some shallot tea towels until I realised they weren't for sale. So sad! Someone should make a t-shirt with that tagline :)

    Hi Julie - Thank you. Glad you enjoyed the pics. I've had wheatgrass juice before and it does taste like grass. Quite a strong grassy flavour and it's quite thick too - but good for you!

    Hi FFichiban - Haha, I think if anything he was pondering his imminent demise. He was definitely a big 'un!

  • At 9/08/2009 3:44 pm, Anonymous Anjana said…

    Awesome collection Helen, hats off!!

  • At 9/15/2009 2:02 am, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Hi Anjana - Thank you, and thanks so much for commenting! :)


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