My my, Kingsland, haven’t you shaped out to be a hip little suburb? Home to great bars, cafes, restaurants and the mighty Eden Park, Kingsland knows how to show the people of Auckland a bloody good time. There’s also an awesome fitness centre, some funky art stores and a vibrant, buzzing vibe that will keep you coming back for more.
Here’s our picks of everything you should be eating, drinking, buying and doing in Kingsland. Hop to it!
This charming ivy-covered café is a haven (literally, it’s hidden down a driveway) with a focus on wholesome, nutritious food. Driven by a love of community, Mondays Eatery make smoothies, salads, rustic lunches and raw treats for you to gobble up in the sunny outdoor courtyard with their mismatched vintage cutlery. We dare you not to ‘gram it.
Phil of Phil’s Kitchen brought fine dining to Kingsland and it is gooood! With a seasonal, constantly changing menu, a trip to Phil’s Kitchen is totally unpredictable. Will he crank out an epic beef loin, bring seafood to the party or do something funky with chocolate? We just don’t know. However, whatever ends up in front of you, it will be mind blowing for all the senses.
Sitting on the main strip, At Bangkok always seems to be chock-a-block with people tucking into the restaurant’s stellar Thai cuisine. From epic drunken noodles to massamun curry, chicken larb and roti so good you won’t know what to do with yourself, At Bangkok will quickly a firm fave. It’s BYO so you can sink a few and get a bit silly but the exposed brick walls and intimate setting make for a perf date night spot.
Atomic Café & Roastery
Atomic Coffee is the bomb so it’s no surprise that their café is one of the best in Kingsland. It had a refurb earlier this year which left it looking super swish, so you can sip your long black and nibble on some freshly baked goodies in style. If you’re after something a bit more substantial there’s plenty of eggs, French toast and an awesome smoky creamed corn, roasted vine tomatoes, harmony ham and toasted rye dish. The space is also available for hire (yep, it’s that cool) for your next function or shindig.
Kingsland’s own slice of Italy comes in the form of Venosa. It emerged from the idea that life is better when you ‘eat pasta, drink wine and be merry’ and that’s exactly why we love this little spot. Much of the menu has been passed down from the owner’s Italian nonna in the form of slow cooked pork ragu, arancini, ossobucco and, of course, an eye rolling-ly good tiramisu. Although Venosa’s wine selection doesn’t disappoint, ditch the vino for the night and try a Negroni, Aperol spritz or Campari soda. Oh, and be sure to give the grappa a go. It would be rude not to.
Portland Public House
This shabby chic Kingsland bar pumps on the weekend, so bring your A-Game chitchat, boogie attire, and prepare yourself for one heck of an evening. Situated on a corner on New North Road, The Portland Public House stock artisan wines and craft beer, as well live gigs and a rather worldly menu—Maori Ceviche (zingy fresh Kahawai) and Hand Cut Not F**kin’ Wedges (not super cultural but whatevs, they’re tops). Pop in and soak up the friendly atmosphere or have a few quiets in the courtyard out back.
One of the most popular bars in the area, Citizen park dishes out Californian-inspired food, thirst quenching bevvies and good times all round. It has an impressive beer garden that plays host to quiz nights, group dinners, Sunday sessions and casual lunches. Food wise you’ll find finger lickin’ good tacos, ceviche, nachos and steak as well as plenty of beer, wine and cocktails.
A local pub for many a Kingslander, Neighbourhood Brewbar consistently delivers great nights out. Mac’s beer is on tap and the wine selection will keep vino fans happy as they catch up with mates, watch the footy or grab a bite to eat. Once the sun goes down the place can get rather packed but that’s what makes it a neighbourhood bar, right?
Into your sports? The Kingslander is your place. This iconic pub is pretty much made for sports fans. It has massive screens, pool tables, darts and hearty food and brews to keep you busy pre and post match. Put any tummy grumbles to rest with a venison burger or order a couple of jugs and grazing plates for the table. You’ll be jacked up for the game in no time.
Tonic Room brings the best of the best health and beauty brands in one place! Tonic Room is Kingsland’s very own wellness store offering bespoke holistic facials, therapies and treatments. It also doubles as a dispensary and shop where you can swing by and chat to the pros about what beauty products, skin care and fragrances will work best for your skin type and needs. Even more, it’s one of the prettiest shops in Kingsland.
14oz Jeans Outlet
The hunt for the perfect pair of jeans isn’t always easy. 14oz Jeans Outlet on Western Springs Road emerged as a pop-up sale store in 2003 but has blossomed into a market leader in branded outlet shopping. Here, you can rummage through racks of premium jean brands and walk away with just the ones for you. Pro tip: buy two, perfect jeans are hard to come by.
Looking to spruce up your home? MIXT on New North Road is full with contemporary New Zealand-made design, jewellery and gifts as well as stylish furniture, lighting and home wares. Supporting local is what MIXT are all about and you’ll come across the unique works Auckland-based artists and designers too ooo and aah over.
You can’t call yourself an Aucklander until you’ve watched the ABs and/or Blues and/or Warriors at Eden Park. The iconic stadium roars with the sound of the country’s rugby supporters as our boys fight it out. Stop by one of Kingsland’s bars and pubs before heading to the game and be sure to use the train—it stops right in the heart of Kingsland.
Habitat For Fitness
Living up to its namesake, Habitat For Fitness is a supportive hub to up your fitness ante and work that booty into shape. Specialising in group training, Habitat For Fitness will get your heart rate up through Barre Attack, TRX and Tabata—a high intensity workout designed to target fat and build muscle. And with Mondays Eatery down the road, you’ll be able to grab a delicious, healthy treat when you’re done!
Want more? Read Pick Of The Precinct: Onehunga.
Image credit: Andrew Wilson