Before opening the doors to her very own restaurant, British chef Laura Greenfield had three goals in mind: to celebrate the best in local produce; create a menu where each dish was as strong as the next; and offer customers a unique dining experience.
February 2015 saw Field & Green established (a take on Greenfield’s surname) just one street up from the Wellington waterfront. Fast forward to today and the goals have been reached, with the restaurant continuing to gain popularity. After relocating from London with Kiwi business partner Raechal Ferguson, choosing the capital as the city in which to realise the dream was easy for Greenfield. “The food scene, accessibility and culture of the city had always impressed me. Wellington has a heart – it just felt right,” she says.
Field & Green’s philosophy is to use fresh, seasonal and local ingredients to create flavoursome, European-inspired soul food, and nothing too fancy, says Greenfield. “There’s a lot of process that goes into each dish, but I don’t want to be pretentious. I prefer to play it down on the menu and when customers get it they say ‘Wow, that’s great’.”
The menu changes weekly to make the most of seasonal produce. “It means we can put all of our love and creativity into each dish. Every dish should be strong,” she says.
Ferguson, a designer, created the simple, light and open space. The original totara counter remains and special features include the 100 per cent biodegradable Italian chairs, the rubber pendant lighting and the New Zealand artwork that Ferguson collected in London.
“I wanted to make it a calm and relaxing environment. We added a chef’s bar to enhance the experience of an open kitchen; people love that experience,” she says.
Greenfield and Ferguson even offer a beverage-matching service to ensure you have the perfect drink for the style of meal you’re enjoying, be it coffee with breakfast or wine with dinner.
Popular menu items include Greenfield’s smashed peas dish and her kedgeree, which is her personal favourite. There’s ice cream too – all made on site – including Marmalade, Stem Ginger and Lemon Meringue flavours.
Before opening, Greenfield and Ferguson toured New Zealand to meet their suppliers. “I use lamb from Invercargill, Long Bush pork from the Wairarapa, fish from Auckland, figs from Marlborough, and Cuba Group Mart is our local fruit and veg. I care about every dish that goes out,” smiles Greenfield.
Field & Green, 262 Wakefield Street, Wellington (04) 384 4992. Opening hours 8am to 3pm Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, 8am to 9.30pm Friday and Saturday.