K C Café & Takeaway

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Monday11:00 am – 11:30 pm.

Tuesday11:00 am – 11:30 pm.

Wednesday11:00 am – 11:30 pm.

Thursday11:00 am – 11:30 pm.

Friday11:00 am – 1:30 am.

Saturday11:00 am – 1:30 am.

Sunday11:00 am – 11:30 pm.

39A Courtenay Place, Te Aro, Wellington

04 385 8980

An unassuming takeaway in the eyes of the casual visitor to Wellington, KC Cafe is so ingrained in the culinary history of the capital that it may as well have heritage status. 

Modelled in the fashion of the classic cha chaan teng (Hong Kong-style diners), KC Cafe is the perfect embodiment of cheap and cheerful done well. The fit out is as no-frills as you can get: plain walls, simple wood panelling and Formica tables let you know instantly that the sole focus here is the food. If that didn’t make it obvious enough, the menu here is one of the biggest - literally - you’ll find in Wellington, covering almost an entire wall and wrapping across the top of the counter too. The message is clear: the range here is unparalleled, and they have the confidence to whip up anything you ask of them.

So expansive is the menu that it’s hard to pick out only a few specialties (each dish has its own fanbase), but the BBQ meat and roast duck on rice is always a filling, value-for-money winner. Other firm favourites here include the char kuay teow (made with KC Cafe’s homemade noodles), wonton noodle soup, KC tofu and the range of clay pots, accompanied by the irresistibly crispy deep-fried squid.

Pick your dish and sit back as the lively kitchen comes to life with a cacophony of noise: the hiss of oil against wok, chicken bones clacking against the chopping board, and the kitchen crew issuing orders with military efficiency. You might even catch a glimpse of the cafe’s owner and namesake, Kom Fai Chan, or Michael (his full initials couldn’t be used, for obvious reasons, hence ‘KC’ Cafe).

With a special place in the hearts of local families, central city workers, and late night revellers alike, it’s no wonder KC Cafe has stood its ground for more than two decades and counting. Whether it’s for a quick midweek lunch or a guilty feed after a night on the town, the warm glow emanating from KC Cafe continues to be a welcome sight for many Wellingtonians.

Words by John Son & Photography by Anna Briggs

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39A Courtenay Place, Te Aro, Wellington

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