Dunedin is a student city with plenty of watering holes, pubs and cocktail bars dotted around. If you’re looking to sip your way through the city, you won’t be disappointed with the nightlife options available. We’ve done the thirsty work, these are the best bars in Dunedin.
Pequeño Lounge Bar
A place to unwind in style, Pequeño is a world class cocktail lounge in the heart of Dunedin. Step into the sleek space and take note of the amazing ambience and impeccable service. There’s live jazz music during the weekend and good vibes all around. Order an espresso martini and get ready to dance the night away in this cool basement bar. Dunedin is truly lucky to have such an incredible place
If you like your drinks served up in a stylish setting with plenty of good vibes, look no further than Vault 21. A favourite among Dunedin locals, a visit to Vault can easily take you from after work drinks until dancing until the wee hours of the morning. The fusion menu is another highlight, we suggest ordering the roast pork belly steamed buns and sticky beef wontons. For guaranteed good vibes, excellent company and fantastic drinks in the heart of the city, look no further than Vault 21.
Toast is the best thing since sliced bread. It’s an understated bar that’s got it all, perfect for after-work drinks and a big night on the town. The menu is packed full of expertly-made cocktails (their bartenders have won several awards including the Suntory Cup and Trans Tasman Cocktail Competition) , craft beers and tasty bar bites. Keep things local and try their espresso martini, which is made using Dunedin’s own Quick Brown Fox coffee liqueur. For an unforgettable night out in Dunedin, Toast needs to be on your list.
Ombrellos Kitchen and Bar
If you have an affinity for craft beer (there’s 15 beers on tap) and live music, Ombrellos Kitchen and Bar needs to be on your radar. One of the city’s most popular bars, Ombrellos is set amongst two beautiful houses joined together with a year-round courtyard. Recently named the best craft beer bar and restaurant in Otago and Southland, you’ll instantly feel comfortable at Ombrellos. It goes without saying that the food on offer is good. We’re partial to their bruschetta and roast butternut pumpkin. Available for functions of all kinds, the service at Ombrellos is consistently amazing. There’s a reason why this place continues to draw crowds. Come along and experience it for yourself.
Carey’s Bay Historic Hotel
Carey’s Bay Historic Hotel was originally established in 1894 as a hotel. While there’s no longer an accommodation option, the Victorian-style pub continues to be a popular bar for Dunedin locals and visitors. Carey’s Bay is blessed with a picturesque seaside location, perfect for both alfresco dining and casual drinks at sundown. With a large selection of craft beers on tap plus several New Zealand wines, it’s a great place for a drink. As expected, the menu focuses on fresh seafood. Favourites include beer battered fish and chips, seafood chowder and salmon and monkfish pie. If you’re after a truly special venue for your next function, Carey’s Bay won’t disappoint.
Luna Bar and Restaurant
Suburban gem, Luna is your answer to nightlife in Roslyn Village. Luna Bar and Restaurant is surrounded by beautiful harbour views regardless of whether you choose to grab a seat on the downstairs patio, the rooftop desk or inside. For beer lovers, there’s an extensive range of tap beers to choose from as well as a huge array of spirits, perfect for your drink of choice. Hungry? Be sure to try the ever-changing Risotto of the Day. There’s a reason why Dunedin locals are venturing to Roslyn, come experience the stunning harbour views at Luna.
Head over to Port Chalmers for a relaxed evening at The Portsider. The bar is spacious and warm with plenty of seating options, find a seat near the bookcases or grab a corner booth. The Portsider stocks a full menu, which includes a large selection of craft beer (plenty of local fave, Emerson’s on tap as well) and an impressive whisky collection. Beer tastings are also on offer, if you can’t make up your mind. Expect all the classic pub fare from fish and chips to the seared beef salad, there’s plenty of hearty dishes to tuck into. For the perfect Sunday outing, come discover The Portsider.