Kaffee Eis, TSB Bank Arena, Wellington

Strolling along Wellington’s harbourside on a great day is just magic. Sunshine, gentle breeze across the water. That seaside air calls out for some gelati and at the waterfront, tucked into the back of the TSB Bank Arena, is Kaffee Eis.

Italian gelati with a German name? It’s a nod to the owner’s Austrian heritage. Kaffee Eis (“coffee ice cream”) specialises in gelati, sorbetti and coffee. The dairy-based gelati are made from milk, while the sorbetti are based on fresh fruit.

Indian Summer from Kaffee Eis - ginger, cardamom and tumeric.
Indian Summer from Kaffee Eis. Intriguing mix of ginger, cardamom and turmeric.

The original store, in Oriental Bay, opened in 2004. The gelati used to be manufactured on-site, but it is now all produced at a separate production facility, with five retail outlets across Wellington.

The TSB Arena kiosk must be the smallest of the five. Just a couple of tables with some chairs outside while inside the tiny kiosk there is space only for the counter.

Only a limited range of flavours are on offer at the kiosk – not enough room! However I was intrigued by Indian Summer, which the friendly server described as ginger, cardamom and turmeric, with extra tang from powdered yoghurt. Kaffee Eis’ most popular flavour, it won prizes at the NZ Ice Cream awards, so I had to try it.

My verdict: gorgeous mix of spices, but way too sweet for my taste. Texture was very light, and it melted rapidly.

The tiny Kaffee Eis kiosk is tucked into the back of the TSB Bank Arena.
The tiny Kaffee Eis kiosk is tucked into the back of the TSB Bank Arena.

Our rating: good

Popular café with five outlets across Wellington. One of the biggest gelati manufacturers in New Zealand, but the sweetness overload and texture issues meant that it was not up to the best artisan gelato.

Kaffee Eis
The Kiosk
TSB Bank Arena
New Zealand

W: kaffeeeis.co.nz

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