The Urban List says Relax. Winter might be just around the corner but these summer temperatures look set to stick around for at least a few weeks. Let’s relish those last few sun-soaked afternoons with a beer in hand and relaxing surroundings.
Beer gardens, not a new concept, yet surprisingly few and far between in old Auckland. Well we’ve done the looking for you and scouted the very best spots to enjoy a cold one in the sun.
Brothers Juke Joint BBQ
For a good old beer and barbie (of the meaty kind rather than the blonde, plastic description), Brother’s Juke Joint BBQ has you covered in both respects. Did we mention the huge courtyard which acts as an absolute sun trap for the afternoon’s rays? Yep, this is without a doubt one of Auckland’s best beer gardens. You’ll be spoilt for choice with 15 beers from NZ’s top craft breweries revolving through the taps. Give one of the house brews a go, poured straight from the tank.
Citizen Park, with its neighbourhood feel is one of our favourite beer gardens to whittle away the afternoon hours. The expansive courtyard is definitely the draw card with its homely furnishings and retractable roof, perfect for Auckland’s schizophrenic raining tendencies. Given its proximity to Eden Park, Citizen Park makes for the perfect location for a much needed pre-match warm up.
Commons Bar and Garden
Beautifully designed courtyard The Commons has us all envious of Takapunians that this isn’t our local. Filled with big tables that can cope with larger groups this is a place to hustle up and crowd and chill with a cold beverage for hours on end. There’s often events and live music to go with that drink of yours and the clientele is the perfect mix of Takapuna tanned creatures and local tradies. The scattering of outdoor heaters ensure that this will be a firm favourite for months to come.
The Kings Arms
Grungy yes, but that only adds to the allure of The Kings Arms in Eden Terrace. The walls may positively radiate sex, drugs and all other things fun, but the garden bar is a more relaxed affair. Of course, it’s a music venue first and foremost, but it also functions as a non-pretentious place to enjoy a beer and listen to tunes from early in the afternoon. Sit back, relax and enjoy the views of the…um motorway.
While it’s somewhat off the beaten track, The Leigh Sawmill Cafe boasts what might be the beer garden to rule them all. Here you’ll find a full restaurant menu, superb wood-fire pizzas and beersies from the local Sawmill Brewery on tap. Enjoy a few rounds in the outdoor seating area or lounge the day away on the garden’s lush lawn. The café is known for hosting wicked concerts, so check out their gig guide to see what’s on.
Morningside’s cutest little neighbourhood bar has an equally cute little courtyard to enjoy a beverage in the sun. But all that cuteness definitely doesn’t get in the way of you and your beer. The kind hosts at Flight 605 know everything there is to know about the brown frothy stuff and it’s the kind of place where you feel like next time they’ll possibly remember your name. If you’re slightly daunted by the craft beer world, you’ll get a gentle coaching here and wind up with a drop you’ll love, and be on your way to becoming a connoisseur in no time.
For a more historical drinking destination in the sun, jump on The Riverhead Cruise from Westhaven out to the Riverhead Tavern. Yes, of course, you can drive there, but boating makes a much more enjoyable commute than Highway 16. Plus, it allows for much more of that all-important drinking activity. That’s what we all came for right?! With the second oldest liquor license in NZ, Riverhead Tavern is steeped in history and good times. Go local and try their Hallertau brews on tap, brewed just minutes down the road.
Deep Creek Brews and Eats
Up in Browns Bay, the pièce de résistance (in our opinion anyway) is Deep Creek Brews and Eats. With an outdoor area with skin-saving umbrellas and views of the beach, you’ll have to drag yourself away. Plus, there’s a ton of beer to be drunk from their Auckland brewery—we can recommend the American IPA ‘The Dominatrix’, not just for the name, but for the smoothness and flavour punch (flavour whip?!).
Think of yourself as a beer connoisseur? Well make sure you try Auckland's Best Craft Beer Bars
Image credit: Citizen Park via Facebook