It’s that time of year again where foodies like me can indulge in Wellington’s best burgers, beer, and if you’re lucky, a degustation or two.
That’s right, it’s August already and it’s the first day of Wellington on a Plate (WOAP). This year is a special one, with WOAP celebrating its 10-year anniversary.
As a burger connoisseur and WOAP veteran, The Initiative has appropriately named me Chief Burger Officer (CBO).
My role as CBO will be to help guide you and the Initiative through the multitude of burger and beer options so you can maximize your burger utility over the next two weeks.
Here are a few of my top tips and insights to help you on your burger adventure.
1. Plan ahead: previous winners of Burger Wellington including Mr Go’s, Apache and Egmont St. Eatery are often filled to the brim over WOAP. High burger demand and a limited supply at these places can often create burger shortages, and at times burger crises. If you don’t want to be left out in the cold, call a few days ahead and make a booking.
2. Economists always like to say, ‘there is no such thing as a free lunch’, at $30 for a burger and a beer that’s obvious. But what economists really mean here is, if you spend your Friday lunch break eating at Egmont St. Eatery then you are giving up the opportunity to eat at Apache. With 180 burgers this year the opportunity cost of eating at one restaurant has never been so high. Make the most of your time and choose carefully.
3. If you're unlucky enough to miss out on your restaurant of choice, do not go to McDonalds. A Big Mac is not a substitute good for a WOAP burger, don’t even think about it! Try your luck at one of the other 179 options out there.
4. Over the last five years, WOAP has grown dramatically in popularity and in size. After five years of growth you might have thought that the burger market had reached saturation. But after looking at the prices this year, I suspect there is burger collusion and burger inflation at play.
5. Lastly, if there is one important lesson I’ve learnt over the years, it’s that burgers are not exempt to the rule of diminishing marginal returns. Unfortunately, burger fatigue is a real and unavoidable outcome of going on an epic burger adventure.