Everyone loves a new establishment to check out. Whether it’s somewhere to fill the innermost desires of your stomach or a place to park up and taste out a scrummy new cocktail menu, we need to visit and we need to visit now. If you’re anything like us, and the love of food (and bevvies!) is strong, you’ll use every excuse under the sun to visit Auckland’s hottest new openings.
Auckland has been graced with a bunch of new restaurants, cafes and bars as of late—not that we’re complaining or anything! From a Beatrix Potter-themed cafe and an epic dumpling joint, to a tiki cocktail bar and Simon Gault’s new venture, there’s a whole lot of yum to
work eat your way through.
To set you on a culinary journey of epic proportions, here’s a handy dandy round-up of our fave new spots. And remember: no new opening left behind. Eat/drink your way around ’em all!
This awesome, kid-friendly cafe is all about coffee, brunch and desert! Oak Eatery is an all-rounder, with a playground for the kiddies and a meeting room for you worker bees. Found in the Royal Oak Mall, it is brought to you by the same people behind Cafe Mont. It has an impressive menu and a cabinet full of freshly baked, drool-worthy pastries to wrap your mouth around. Oak Eatery is a cafe you'll want to visit again and again.
Goodness Gracious me, they've done it again and opened their second cafe in Parnell after the success of their Eden Terrace eatery. This hot spot is notorious for its bagels, which are both perfectly doughy, yet provide a satisfying crunch. We like to imagine the Goodness Gracious bagels are straight out of New York—‘The Kranksy’ could have fooled us. They've even got tummy-friendly, gluten free options! A little bit of New York style goes a long way.
There’s a new waterfront eatery that’s got everyone talking, backed by the MasterChef himself—Simon Gault. Giraffe, affectionately named by Simon’s three-year-old, mixes fine dining with a more relaxed vibe. And you better believe the menu has been carefully put together to suit every palate. Open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and drinks, this restaurant is perfect for an intimate date, a work function and everything in between.
The Nightingale is a new pop-up bar named after a bird that sings not only when it's daylight but at night as well. And, there is a reason behind the name—the bar never goes to sleep itself (almost). Opening only for the winter period, they're going to bring some fresh air and a hint of fire into the district. The Nightingale's speciality is craft beer but this doesn't stop them from making stunning cocktails and having a top-notch wine list. All of mentioned above will go well with the comfort food they serve such as meat and cheese platters, burgers, mac 'n cheese and grandma's chocolate cake.
The Lula Inn
One of Auckland’s newest eateries is giving is giving us a taste of home in the most glorious fashion—who knew Kiwi cuisine could be so fine? Overlooking the glistening harbour, this pozzy is perfect for eating (and drinking) the day away. The Lula Inn's mouth-watering menu takes traditional Kiwi dishes to a whole new level. Think golden lager battered fish’n’chips and Takapoto steak with a garlic butter. But you better leave room for dessert because these classics have also been Kiwified. The most enticing option has got to be the raspberry chocolate fish—you can’t get more Kiwi than that!
Situated on Jervois Road is newcomer cafe, Beatrix. This cute-as-a-button eatery is reminiscent of Beatrix Potter, with a calming blue interior and delicious food for breakfast and lunch. Beatrix is a brilliant mix of Dutch and French with the likes of croissants, Dutch honey cake, fresh fruit and free-range poached eggs on the menu. If you have a sweet tooth, you can’t go past their fluffy pancake laid in a pool of blueberry compote, maple, vanilla mascarpone and candied orange zest.
Hero Sandwich house
Eden Terrace has a new hero in the form of a brand new sandwich house. Hero Sandwich House makes those lacklustre sandwiches you pack for yourself a thing of the past. Showcasing the works of local artists, you'll find a bright and sleek fit-out that will make you feel at home. With cheeky names, there's a sandwich for everyone. And to wash down all those scrumptious sammies, there's Supreme coffee on hand, as well as Greenleaf Organics juices. Hero Sandwich House really is our hero!
Sometimes, you just need a good hearty burger. Lucky for us, the Burger Lab team have got you covered. Our top pick would be the mammoth-sized beef burger, which features all the good stuff including a New Zealand grass-fed beef patty, aged cheddar, pickles, lettuce, tomato, crispy streaky bacon, caramelised onion, a killer smoked BBQ sauce, oozing aioli all on a brioche-style bun toasted to perfection. Situated on Jervois Road, you’ll be racing down to give this one a try!
Tucked away down Federal Street is Auckland's most innovative Indian restaurants, 1974 Eatery. This eatery brings an authentic but contemporary cuisine. Make sure you give the chicken lollipop a go—trust us—it's amazing! And the butter chicken and lamb shank nihaari are both to die for. While you'll probably head to 1974 Eatery for their finger-licking food, don't forget to try one of their bespoke cocktails!
Simon & Lee
Parnell's food scene is getting only better and better—and it's thanks to the likes of Simon & Lee. The hip new cafe is tucked away off the main drag, the menu features European cuisine with a dash of Korean. Dig into the likes of eggs bene with miso truffle béchemal and kimchi, bibimbap and agedashi tofu—it's perfectly crispy on the outside and silky on the inside!
Dumplings and Aucklanders go hand in hand—it's the stuff of true love! And cult-favourite Mr Zhou's has opened its doors in Mt Eden, leading to a collective sigh of relief. Here, opt for the pork and chives dumplings or make a beeline for the beef and coriander—yum. There's also an array of other dishes to choose from, including sizzling pork with lashings of sweet and sour sauce, hand-pulled noodles and a tofu and cucumber salad. Mr Zhou's is a must-visit for all your dumpling cravings.
Transport yourself into a magical paradise at Talulah. Found just above The Chamberlain in Britomart, Talulah's tiki theme will have you wishing you were in a Pacific paradise. Here you'll find epic cocktails served in coconuts, tiki heads and even alongside tentacles. Drinks include the likes of the Pandanacolda, which kicks the pina colada to the kerb—thing coconut-infused dark rum, coconut milk, pandan syrup, pineapple, banana and black tea bitters. Talulah is one bar you need to put on your must-visit list, stat.
Image credit: Jaiden Bhaga, Kate Rose and supplied.