Bars & Pubs

35 Bars You Should Have Been To If You Live In Auckland

By Mikaela Foy
23rd Mar 2017

35 Bars You Should Have Been To If You Live In Auckland

Whether they’re hidden down alleyways or local institutions, we’ve compiled a bucket list of Auckland’s best bars. While we did it back in 2015, given the fabulous new openings and reinvention of old bars, we thought it was time for a list update. So put those party pants on, dear reader, and see how many of the best Auckand bars you can check off this list!

  1. Mea Culpa: The home of immaculately constructed (and damn tasty) cocktails, Ponsonby’s Mea Culpa (Latin for ‘my fault’) will serve up the prettiest drink you’ve ever slurped.
  2. Everybody’s: Everybody loves Everybody’s. From a courtyard, mezzanine to a mega couch, you’ll find somewhere to place your tush and drink the night away.
  3. The Jefferson: A whisky lover’s paradise, The Jefferson is Auckland’s only dedicated whisky bar—plus their sticky ribs are epic!
  4. Bedford Soda & Liquor: Hands down one of the best bars in Auckland, Bedford Soda & Liquor will have you knocking back hard shakes left, right and centre. Don’t forget to grab some meatballs for double the protein!
  5. Fukuko: Shochu cocktail central! Fukuko makes Auckland’s best bar list for bringing Japanese boozy goodness to Britomart.
  6. Xuxu: Dumplings? Check. Cocktails? Check. A courtyard to enjoy them? They’ve got it. Britomart’s Xuxu is a genuine gem of an Auckland bar.  
  7. Freida Margolis: A charming Grey Lynn local packed with personality and punches. Frieda Margolis serves up vodka, vermouth and pomegranate, as well as an excellent cocktail list.  
  8. The Glass Goose: Check out this Federal Street bar if you’re into rooftops, #foodporn grazing menus and cocktails galore. The Glass Goose is on its way to the top of Auckland’s best bar rankings.   
  9. The Britomart Country Club: A much-loved bar in the heart of Auckland city. BCC’s massive courtyard is where you want to be for after work dranks and noms.  
  10. The Gin Room: Bask in botanicals and 1920s feels at this Vulcan Lane bar. It crafts some of the best cocktails in Auckland.
  11. Housebar: After undergoing a few refurbs, Housebar in Hotel DeBrett has been restored to its former glory. Hidden from the bustling streets of the CBD, with a relaxed, speakeasy atmosphere, classic cocktails and an eclectic mix of people, it’s of the best bars in Auckland.
  12. Bellini: The beloved Bellini has been a hit with Auckland’s cocktail connoisseurs for yonks, and they’ve recently treated them to a new look and feel. With stunning harbour views, it’s one place you’ll never want to leave.
  13. 46 & York: A classy yet casual watering hole in Parnell, 46 & York is the kinda place where you could easily waste an afternoon. Their cocktails are among the best in Auckland and oh, and good luck with resisting the food menu—the mac n’ cheese is to die for.
  14. La Zeppa: La Zeppa is an Auckland favourite, and with a ginormous sun-drenched outdoor deck (complete with lanterns for when the sun goes down), open fireplace and a tapas-style menu—it’s the ultimate bar for drinks with the crew.
  15. The Corner: This neighbourhood tapas and wine bar in Howick is a hit with the locals and, with a bunch of weekly specials, a buzzing atmosphere, and brilliant service, we don’t blame them.
  16. Flight 605: This quirky gem of a bar is Morningside’s best asset and will make you feel right at home via craft beer and free popcorn.
  17. Coley & Punch: Coley & Punch shakes up cocktails and whisky concoctions from its swanky Princes Wharf hub.
  18. Caretaker: This hidden gem is a New York-style cocktail bar, bringing you the funkiest and yummiest drinks around. With a whole lotta character to the joint, there’s no way you can’t have a good time.
  19. Love Bucket: It’s fair to say Love Bucket are the coolest kids on the block. Fruity cocktails, delicious tapas and some kick-ass staff, what’s not to love?
  20. Gypsy Tearoom: After a hard day of work and play, the Gypsy Tearoom is the perfect place to wind down and get groovy. Renowned for their distressed interior and yummy selection of drinks, you’d be silly to not pay a visit.
  21. Vikki Lane Bar & Kitchen: Tucked away in an open laneway, Vikki Lane is a classic meeting point for all things delicious and fun. There’s frosé, snacks and mouth-watering meals on offer to fill all your groovy needs.
  22. Dr Rudi’s Rooftop Brewing Co:  Located three levels up and looking over Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour, Dr Rudi’s provides quality banter, great vibes AND a bowling ally. This is not a drill—get your butt down there for a wicked time.
  23. The Merchant: For all our Shore pals out there, this one’s for you. Tucked away in the heart of Albany, The Merchant pride themselves on great beer, delicious food and a bloody good time. Check out what live music bands are on—you may even get the chance to show off your slick dance moves.
  24. Ponsonby Social Club: A total veteran when it comes to Auckland’s best bar hot spots—the Ponsonby Social Club totally holds it down.
  25. The Matakana: On a pretty summer’s day, you wanna be heading up north to The Matakana for a glass of locally produced wine and oysters in their beer garden.
  26. Rickshaw Eddy’s Bar: This snazzy spot sits across the along the beach of Mission Bay. Despite the dazzling location, Rickshaw Eddy’s rocks a humble, old-school vibe which is totally unique and cool. Get amongst!
  27. The Commons: A real crowd favourite for the North Shore locals, The Commons are known for their gorgeous floral jugs and out-door setting. Oh-so divine.
  28. The Conservatory: Sitting along Auckland’s Viaduct, you really do have the best seat in the house. Decorated with a whole lotta plants, you can enjoy a glass of anything and everything in a funky hanging chair, if you’re into that.
  29. Grangers: This joint has you and your crew covered in Half Moon bay. Quality music, drinks and food? What more could you want.
  30. Sardine: Decked out in epic ‘sardine tin’ wallpaper, this spot is known to have a fun and bustling atmosphere due to their thoughtfully chosen wine list and custom-made cocktails.
  31. Banque: Modern, chic and oh-so-tasty, Banque has a little something for everyone. Whether you're popping in for after work drinks or a meal during the day, this ‘lil find is a must.
  32. Leigh Sawmill Cafe: Escape the hustle and bustle of Auckland City for a delicious drink at Leigh Sawmill Cafe. Sourcing only the best wines and produce, you are able to kick back in the ornamental garden with a cocktail—or two. Maybe three.
  33. The Patriot: If you love a good British accent—this ones for you. The patriot is an English-inspired pub sitting in the heart of Devonport. Live music, karaoke nights and live sporting matches are always on the go!
  34. The Elephant Wrestler: The Elephant Wrestler is just vibes on vibes on vibes. Fruity cocktails, courtyard sessions and amazing burgers, do we need to say more?
  35. Pocket Bar and Kitchen: Tucked away in Grey Lynn, Pocket Bar and Kitchen is full of character and open space. Perf for a mid-day drink over lunch or a lil sunday session. 

Image credit: Lauren Matilda Matthews at Caretaker

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