Welcome to Gear Homestead Bistro & Venue

In Gear Homestead Bistro & Venue we offer a variety of services for you

Visit us in our New Bistro on weekends (Friday to Saturday) Book now from 5 to 8 pm

Book our Venue for Business or your special Wedding Day

Get a professional catering with Chef Lorna Shelton from Red Herring Catering

About Gear Homestead Bistro & Venue

Gear Homestead ‘Okowai’ is a historic building in Porirua, New Zealand. It was listed by the New Zealand Historic Places Trust (since renamed to Heritage New Zealand) as a Category 2 historic place in 1983.

Gear Homestead is significant because of its association with James Gear, a butcher who founded the Gear Meat Preserving and Freezing Company. The company was one of the largest employers in Wellington and also played a large part in the development of Petone.

Gear Homestead was acquired by chef and caterer Lorna Shelton after emigrating to New Zealand to join other family members from Edinburgh, Scotland.

Lorna established Red Herring Catering in 2003. The first Red Herring kitchen was in the picturesque Ohariu Valley, but moved to bigger premises in Newlands Mall in 2004.

Working along with Red Herring Catering, Gear Homestead is now house for the Gear Homestead Bistro and Venue.


Gear Homestead was the perfect location for the type of wedding we wanted. We wanted an outdoor ceremony and reception, with the option of being indoors if the weather was bad. All of our wishes could be accommodated at Gear Homestead. Fortunately the weather was perfect and the day ran like clockwork, which meant we could just relax and enjoy it. We were more than happy with the beautiful setting, as well as service and food. We also had excellent feedback from our guests. We would have no hesitation recommending Gear Homestead as an outstanding wedding venue, and if we had to do it all again, we wouldn’t make any changes, as the day was perfect.

— Wedding Testimonial – Darryn & Doreen Leighton 2016