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“Dinner”

Cool Change Bar & Eatery
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $6 - $25
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Description: Why Cool Change? Cool change came to fruition for a number of reasons. Having frequented this stunning region for some years to escape the hustle & bustle of the city life at every opportunity, we saw a window to taste the Wairarapa life as residents & business owners. Hence why we thought it would be a Cool Change. We stumbled across the chance to convert one of the most ornate, beautiful buildings in the Wairarapa into a warm, comfortable, unique hospitality concept. The name derives from one of our greatest passions - music. Throw in the fact that we are vulnerable to the odd occasional southerly blast & fondness of "The Little River Band" Cool Change was born. Our facility consists of 1 private function room, seats 12 people. Our dining room features booth seating, open fire, period & deco lighting and retro wallpaper. The bar greets you on entry with a warm ambiance; sky TV when required & a wine list to tempt those taste buds. Cool Change cuisine will not disappoint as our Head Chef Rachel Priestley has weaved her magic around the globe - Italy, Switzerland, Austria, United States, France, Finland, Sweden, Taipei, Hong Kong, China - Shanghai. Her cuisine is Italian inspired food, using the freshest ingredients including using her own italian salumi. Food and wine was her life and Rachel worked for 10 years in Italy. She produces all sorts of Italian salumi products from happy pigs in New Zealand, she has opened six Italian restaurants in Italy, taught Tuscan chefs how to cook Tuscan cuisine better, taught male chefs from Puglia in the South of Italy their own cuisine. Rachel ran a truffle shop in Florence, opened a wine bar in Bormio for Amaro Braulio, a restaurant by the sea in Gaeta in a 14th century pharmacy, a restaurant in Naples for the Camorra - the Naples Mafia. And now she is back in New Zealand to supply you with fine Italian food and wine, cooking here at Cool Change Bar & Eatery.
Reviewed January 18, 2014 via mobile

Steak, pork and fish were cooked to perfection (including rising to the challenge of preparing a magnificent blue steak!). Wonderful to find a small town restaurant with big city skills.

1  Thank CMJ626
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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243 - 247 of 341 reviews

Reviewed January 7, 2014

Porchetta juicy and tender although a bit underseasoned. Scotch fillet, delicious, well seasoned and huge! Martinborough seems to have the biggest scotch fillets I've ever come across. Ribs were left looking like a fossil and fries were nice enough. Salads a bit small for the price , but devoured by children. Tempura battered banana split was to die for!

Thank BSM56F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 13, 2013

My daughter and I recently dined two nights running at Cool Change. The first night is because there is very little open on a Tuesday night in Martinborough in December so we came across from the hotel to see what was on offer. We were so pleased we did.
My daughter had the pork belly which she loved and I had fish. We also had a wonderful strawberry, feta, rocket and balsamic salad - our highlight. We both enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere and great Martinborough wine( me) so much that we went again the next night. Again wonderful! Highly recommended for the great food and friendly, low key service. We will be back!

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Thank JPLNewZealand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2013

Thanks for having us last night and opening on a Monday night for our group! Very yummy and enjoyable!

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Thank Tina B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2013

In three days in Martinborough we ate here three times. It's just a wonderful place to hang out, eat, and drink. Starting with the staff - all were engaging, great senses of humor, and most helpful in selecting a good beer or wine to match their food. It was the people above all the made us eager to come back repeatedly. Then the menu. I've seen complaints about limited selection, but I think that's a good thing. The dishes were well selected, made with the freshest local ingredients, and (at least in our experience) done extremely well. Over the course of the three visits we tried a good percentage of the menu and enjoyed everything (particular thumbs up for the mussels and the fish in papillote with minted potatoes). Everything paired really nicely with wines from their ample list - both whites and reds, with a focus on the pinots of the area but also wines from around the country. If you're not a wine drinker, they had a few taps of tasty craft beers. Last, but most definitely not least, the decor. We absolutely loved the juxtaposition of the kitschy (but cool) '70s interior - awesome light fixtures - and the staid 1930s post office building in which the place is located. The soundtrack kept us there for several additional glasses after we'd finished our meal - tunes from the 1970s-1980s that were as carefully hand picked as the menu. If you can understand the origins of the restaurant name, you will dig the music. Come in for a glass of wine and a chat and a few songs and you'll end up staying for dinner for sure.

If we make it back to Martinborough, we'll definitely make our first stop the comfortable easy chairs out front of Cool Change!

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1  Thank Ben W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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