Gear Homestead is a hidden historic treasure in Porirua with sweeping harbour views and beautiful grounds. It is both a function centre and cafe.
A sweeping driveway leads to Gear Homestead and on arrival you feel like you are somewhere special. The homestead was built in the 1880’s and was lived in by the original family for many years. Walking up the veranda to the double doors and entering the historic building is a treat in itself. Many original features have been retained, from the door handles to the ceiling roses. On entering you are in the heart of the cafe at the homestead. The atmosphere in the homestead is relaxed, casual and happy.
The food is made by a team of chefs who are also involved in the catering company, Red Herring Catering. Gear Homestead makes many of its own products and the relishes are available to purchase. The building doubles as a function centre as well as a cafe and weddings can be held on the premisses. Currently the minimum number for high tea is 6 people, booked a week in advance and groups can be accommodated. Larger groups are served in their own room upstairs in the function centre. Lorna, the owner introduced herself and was lovely and told us about plans for a local produce market to be held on the premises and other plans for the homestead. Gear Homestead has beautiful large grounds which encircle the house.
We were seated by the friendly staff and advised of our choices of black, green and fruits teas or a plunger of coffee. Our wonderful table had views out over the garden, across the harbour and was beautifully laid. We both agreed on Earl Grey tea and a large pot arrived to keep us happy although a tea cosy would have been good to keep it warm.
The High Tea was proudly presented by a staff member and we were given the menu to guide us through what we were to feast upon. We began with the finger sandwiches and then the goats cheese and roast vegetable frittata. It was topped with caramelised onions and house made pesto, it was divine with perfectly sized vegetables. The sausage rolls with light pastry were also very good and we didn’t stop at one.
We bridged the gap between the sweet and savoury with the traditional scone, these were little delicate, fluffy scones which we topped with the cream and jam that was on the table. After that we progressed to one of the best eclairs I have had in New Zealand. They were perfectly sized and filled with cream, the icing was amazing, thick and coffee flavoured and decorated with chocolate. After the divine eclair we moved on to the delicious baked lemon cheesecake which was topped with a flavourful raspberry ripple. We both enjoyed the lemon and raspberry match. To finish we each selected a surprise macaron, my pistachio macaron was delicious.
This High Tea was delicious, excellent for the price and I wold love to return with a group of friends. The ability to seat groups, offer private rooms and the historic setting are where Gear Homestead differs from other venues.
Gear Homestead High Tea Menu
- Finger Sandwiches
- Roasted vegetable and goats cheese frittata
- Mini warm sausage rolls
- Sweet scone with jam and whipped cream
- Coffee and chocolate eclairs with cream
- Baked lemon cheesecake with raspberry ripple