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“5 star restaurant experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ambeli - CLOSED

Ambeli
18 Majoribanks St | Mt Victoria, Wellington 3011, New Zealand
04 385 75 77
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Price range: $1 - $33
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Description: Driven by the good cheer of maxim "it's an empty house without our visitors!" and the plethora of the hosts's family heritages, Ambeli's cuisine is offering the true satisfaction of the Mediterranean from a new angle; supported by the winelist of owner Shaebodine Moleta whose passion for the service of dinner is boundless.
Wellington, New Zealand
Top Contributor
124 reviews 124 reviews
82 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“5 star restaurant experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2013

This week my partner and i enjoyed a wonderful meal at Ambeli. We eat out a lot in Wellington, but I can confidently say that this would be the best restaurant I have eaten at in Wellington.

The service is excellent. The waiting staff are very attentive, yet leave you alone so that you can have some privacy.

I had a halomui entree and a venison main. These were both absolutely devine. You can really taste the quality in the dishes here and the dishes show heavy attention to detail by the kitchen staff.

I cannot fault anything at this restaurant. I would strongly recommend it as a restaurant for an occasion (birthday, anniversary etc) as it is a little gem in Wellington.

The restaurant also accepts Entertainment Cards so this makes the meals reasonably affordable here.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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119 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    84
    19
    9
    7
    0
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Sydney, Australia
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
“Creative Cuisine”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2013

I loved our dinner at this great little restaurant - cosy, intimate atmosphere, open fire, interesting menu - I devoured the seared duck breast - just perfect. Eclectic and extensive wine list. The only shortcoming was the waitress - whilst perfectly good at carrying out her duties didn't seem to be quite in sinc with the high level of the establishment. Will definitely dine here again.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland, NZ
Top Contributor
109 reviews 109 reviews
71 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
“Clever and inspiring cuisine”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

We visited Ambeli for dinner recently on a weekend visit to Wellington. It is located just around the corner from the Embassy Cinema (of Hobbit fame) in what looks like an old shop front. The layout and interior are cosy but not at all pretentious. We were shown to a window table which allowed us to watch the passersby and the wait staff were attentive and helpful in discussing the menu and specials.

The menu presents an interesting and clever take on some of the classic ingredients of bistro food. There is an emphasis on the matching of offal with main cuts and each dish was presented with an inspired selection of tastes and textures. This may put some potential customers off but be assured that the use of offal is subtle and very well done. This was food which was a little less "hyper-constructed" than some at the fine dining end of the spectrum, but it was thoroughly deserving of the reputation Ambeli has developed. The concierge at our hotel asked if we had arrangements for dinner and when we said that we had booked here she was effusive, saying that Ambeli was her favourite restaurant in Wellington at the moment. We could see why.

The wine list is not huge but it is very well balanced between old and new world wines and presented a range of prices which would allow most to choose a good match for the food. It is a pity perhaps that more wines were not available by the glass.

Ambeli is noted as one of the top 10 restaurants in the city in most review sources and we would concur with that view after having been there.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Uk
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“January blues?”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

Very disappointing. Seems to have changed hands or was in January holiday mode. Nowhere near as buzzy and well run as on previous visits: wait staff did not seem to be up to the job. Food was disappointing and some of it had been standing around. Hope this was a one off.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
120 reviews 120 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 86 cities Reviews in 86 cities
141 helpful votes 141 helpful votes
“Best meal in new zealand”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

Dinner at this restaurant is a must if you are passing through wellington. The service was excellent, the food was fantastic and the wine was lovely. We had a very enjoyable evening and would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone who is a foodie! We wanted to try the entire menu.

Visited December 2012
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