[YOU NEED TO VISIT & TRY IN 2023]
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When Wellington has a good day, there’s nothing better than making the most of it and having a drink in the sun. When Wellington has a bad day? There’s no better place to be than in a cozy bar with a drink in hand. Basically, what we’re saying is we bloody love a drink—and Wellington is the perfect spot for it, rain or shine.
Whatever your drink of choice is, we have you covered—here are 19 of the best bars in New Zealand’s glorious capital, Wellington based on the recommendations that I was given by the locals in this curated guide I created for you all. Here, you will also as you read the information below that I made a video for you all to watch with this guide information I created if you ever do decide to visit Wellington, New Zealand.
The places I mentioned were as follows to visit:
1. Choice Bros
Where you can find this is when you are in Wellington itself down a not-so-hidden alleyway, on a not-so-secret street, lies what is fast becoming one of Wellington’s most central institutions. With the combination of a love of craft beer and coffee with upscale Americana, Choice Bros. (previously known as Husk) brings together the best parts of Wellington.
Choice Bros. offers the rare opportunity to return throughout the day for a different experience, with a breakfast offering that will rival your favorite brunch spots and a bar that taps into their own in-house brewery pouring a host of Bowie-inspired beers. Their fried chicken and jalapeno poppers are very much the talks of the town too,
The former boxing gym turned fairy-light-filled hideaway offers a surprisingly cozy getaway from Wellington’s busiest and bustling center, with industrial fixings and an entirely open brewery to look upon as you eat, drink, and while away the day.
I would like to recommend and say to you all to make sure you sample some ‘Puppet Dancer’, ‘Careless Whisper’ or the seriously good ‘Strung Out on Lasers’ to get a real sense of why Choice Bros stands out among the growing number of breweries in the city.
With wines and barrel-aged cocktails that are also on offer, the selection would almost be overwhelming to choose from, if it weren’t for the knowledgeable staff open to leading you through the best of their menu.
Also, as you can see as you go through the main part of the place, you will see a little still distillery/brewery where they create their own beers and wines on site.
Choice Bros. stands out as a one-stop shop for everything Wellington stands for – local businesses collaborating together to bring the best to your table. It caters to a social crowd, with a communally inspired space and a large set of sharing options on the menu. It’s even dog-friendly.
2. Night Flower
The Night Flower Punch Lounge is a candle-lit cocktail bar specializing in Punch and the cocktails of the mid-1800s through to the early 1930s. As part of the flair of these eras that was introduced for these types of beverages offered to you. Nightflower arrived in town a few years ago and is now possibly Wellington’s most popular cocktail bar. It has a prime position upstairs on the corner of Cuba and Ghuznee streets, with balconies overlooking Cuba Street where you can people-watch while sipping on your bespoke cocktail.
Nightflower’s differentiating factor is that they have no menu. Sure, they can do the classic cocktails if you ask, but the idea here is to tell the bartender what you like (smoky or sour, sweet and fruity or savory and herby), and then they’ll make up something to suit your tastes. I’ve never had them get it wrong and you can get a completely different drink every time you go.
(Photo image of Rinwick Boon formerly from Crumpet, he owns the place)
Night Flower is a well-known bar for the most elite, expensive, and exclusive to hide away upstairs for an evening — which is probably why FireTheLier and I couldn’t find it on our first go.
Hidden unassumingly between Cuba Street’s 1154 Pastaria and The Rogue & Vagabond, the dark wooden sign above tells those in the know they’re home, and keeps the late-night wanderer, unknown Wellingtonian or ferocious partier firmly on the Ghuznee Street pavement, forever passing by.
Night Flower takes old-fashioned cocktails and reworks them with a botanical flair; possets, syllabubs, Rumfustians, fizzes, fixes, and flips; if you don’t know what we’re talking about, you will soon. Tell the Night Flower team what flavors you’re into and they’ll make you a cocktail to match (or challenge) your taste.
Night Flower make their own tonic water, a subtly perfumed and delicately flavored concoction that elevates their G&Ts to whole new levels of deliciousness. With a large deck overlooking the heart of Cuba Street, Night Flower is the perfect spot for a drink while you watch the bohemian happenings, below.
3. The Ascot
Over the last couple of years, Ghuznee has undergone a bit of a revival, the transformation of a new restaurant/bar from a humdrum street to a humming destination. This once unremarkable part of town now boasts a trail of stylish shops, buzzing breweries, and cool cafes along the streets of Wellington.
The latest addition to this increasingly cool precinct is The Ascot, where you can relax on top of a chill rooftop bar that is nestled above the restaurant of Pasta Joint 1154 and cocktail haunt Night Flower.
From the street, it’s nearly near impossible to spot this rooftop hideaway. There is a small sign above the entrance that hints at its existence, but this is one of those places that is seemingly reserved for the curious and those in the know of the area.
Once you’ve ascended the winding staircase you’ll emerge into a loft-style space, decked out with upcycled odds and ends. The bar retains a smattering of features from previous inhabitants (spot the old ‘Krazy Lounge’ sign), giving it a slightly roughed-up, gritty appearance. A record player spins funky beats, creating a low-key, lounge vibe.
There’s a handful of tables inside, however, it’s the roof terrace that really shines. This outdoor space is a real suntrap, making it an ideal spot for a few sundowners. Wrapped by a parapet, you won’t find views over Cuba Street, but the brick wall does offer protection from the pesky Wellington wind and creates a cozy nook for after-dark drinks.
When it comes to the food and drink, simply good seems to be The Ascot ethos. The menu is short and sweet, with just a few light bites on offer alongside a neat and petite drinks list.
Their hot dogs and wine are the headliners. Could there be a better pairing? Not only do these two make great companions, but they’re also perfect Instagram fodder for the foodies at heart.
Chow down on one of several dogs on offer, including a cheeseburger-style number and a Korean-inspired version with kimchi. We opted for the Jerrydog, which came smothered in spicy mayo, pickles, and cheese. Hot diggity dog, it was good.
For those of the veggie persuasion, you can change any hot dog to a ‘not dog’ by swapping the meat for a carrot. A what now? Yep, you read right — a sizzled carrot masquerades as a frankfurter. Clever. According to my pal, this worked surprisingly well and made for a tasty substitute.
The drinks list is refreshingly short, so decision-making is a breeze.
The blackboard wine list changes daily and features just three carefully chosen wines, with a focus on natural wines and interesting international varietals. You can also imbibe one of three house cocktails, made by the batch. Points for efficiency there.
Choose from a negroni, old fashioned, or Summer Brew — The Ascot’s take on an espresso martini.
On tap, you’ll find Cassels & Sons beers, or choose from a fridge full of Garage Project faves. Drinks range from $10-12 a pop and the hot dogs come in at $9 each.
With its sun-drenched terrace and chilled vibes, The Ascot is perfect for a summer afternoon session with your mates, or just cozy up in the corner with a date and enjoy some late-night star-gazing over a hot dog and a brew or two.
Ghunzee Street, Te Aro, Wellington (View larger map)
4. Lola Rouge
Come a little closer and step inside their Lola Rouge Bar. Feel free to immerse yourself in the world of Wunderkammer, where collected curiosities line the walls under the dim light of luxurious lamps. A cozy, sumptuous space for travelers to call home, even if for a moment while they’re inside this bar setting. This is known as an Asian Restaurant that will tantalize your tastebuds with all cuisines that will match the drinks of your choice.
The extensive drinks menu of boutique wines and beer from local craft breweries happily accompanies the bar menu or take your experience to the next level with our carefully curated cocktails. Lola Rouge is located on the ground floor of Naumi Studio
Wellington and can be entered through either our Dunlop Terrace or Cuba Street Entrances.
5. The Library
Library Bar is where we used to go as students in Wellington when we had something to celebrate or wanted to pretend that we were classy. It’s still the bar where you’re most likely to run into drunk uni students but their clientele is broader than that.
True to the theme, the bar is lined with bookshelves holding actual books and they often do literary-themed cocktails.
Calling all introverts, do they have a bar for you to sit down and rewind after work or study! (Keep reading Extroverts, you’ll like it, too.) Step out of the bright lights and swift pace of Courtenay Place, ascend the flight of stairs, push open the door and you’ll feel like you’ve just stepped out of a wardrobe into a new world.
The bar is comprised of some intimate booths and cozy nooks for you and your partner to do some schmoozing, each with its own set of shelves lined with books (we’re talking real, actual books here if you’re one of the kinds who love to read, of course.). Oozing warmth and old-world charm, with red crushed velvet seating, soft (i.e. flattering) light from table lamps, and the walls adorned with retro vintage framed prints.
Why a library-themed bar? Peter says that it provides constant inspiration, as well as giving an excuse to have books everywhere. “It suits Wellington as Wellingtonians are just a little bit geeky and the idea of fun, frivolous cocktails that are inspired by your favorite book about zombies, really appeals to them.”
Library Bar is particularly good for events as they come up with some awesome cocktails for Wellington on a Plate as well as seasonal Easter cocktails and things like that. Very Instagrammable. They do 2-for-1 cocktails on Wednesday but be warned that that’s when all the students go and get messy. Otherwise, drinks range from $17 to $34.
These cocktails sure as hell will tap into memories of time and place, books read, movies enjoyed, and destinations visited in time.
With cocktails referencing popular cultures, such as the vodka-soaked strawberry creation called How I Met Your Mother, popular literature, such as Alice in Wonderland which combines shiraz gin and raspberry soda, and historical literary figures, namely the Hemmingway Mai Tai, which has a limit of three per person, per evening.
Peter says that his favorite cocktail to make is the one that you’re going to enjoy the most. The Library staff love to talk to their customers to find out what they like and make a bespoke drink that will be just the thing you didn’t know you felt like.
With live music every Thursday, Friday, and Sunday evening, two-for-one desserts on Tuesday, and cocktails specials every Wednesday, you’re about to discover your new favorite library.
6. The Puffin
Welcome to a new Wellington wine bar, The Puffin, which ostensibly has minimalism at its core. That may be true of its food and drink, but one glance at its lavishly classy interior and you’d be forgiven for assuming otherwise.
Tucked well away from the noise of Ghuznee Street down a long, dark hallway, The Puffin feels like an exclusive club.
Operated by Sean Golding (Golding’s Free Dive, Shepherd) and business partner Hannah Wells, it will eventually serve as the ground floor of a new boutique hotel, The Intrepid. The rough brick walls and exposed pillars offer a sharp contrast to the plush green booths, with the globe lights providing a dim but welcoming ambiance.
Simply put, if you’re after a secluded spot for an intimate date, this may be the place for you and your partner as the place to be. Perching inside a wine bar, we simply couldn’t forgo the drinks menu and it didn’t take long for one of us to settle down with a negroni ($13), which came garnished with orange peel and hit the right notes.
The Puffin also offers a selection of small sharing plates, which we were more than willing to investigate.
First up was the mortadella sandwich ($16), which resembled a small burger. It packed a bit of grease but we found it surprisingly hearty and approachable, with the mortadella, cheese, and pesto combining really well to provide a counterpoint to some of the more tart beverages on offer.
The broccolini ($12) proved to be a real treat as well, with the minute slices of pickled chili offering
a superb contrast to the tahini dressing and greens. A delightful snack to go with your wine, but given the price point, the serving could have been bigger.
For a more traditional barside option, we also ordered the coppa platter ($12), which came accompanied by pickled vegetables and crackers. As expected, the saltiness of the coppa turned out to be an excellent wine pairing and played off the richness of the mortadella and broccolini well.
With a dazzling array of wine, cocktails, and other beverages, coupled with one of the classiest new venues in Wellington, The Puffin is a perfect place to wind down after hours with a drink and some nibbles to graze on.
7. Hawthorn Lounge
Hawthorn Lounge is tucked away at the end of an easily missable corridor on Tory Street which is in keeping with the 1920s speakeasy style of the bar. It’s the kind of place that manages to be dark and gloomy in a glamorous way.
This is a great spot to bring a date as the booths and small tables feel very private and romantic due to the lamp lighting. For drinks, we really liked their darker cocktails like the negroni but the menu changes often so there’s always something new and seasonal to try.
8. Dirty Little Secret
Wellington’s original rooftop container bar offers near-panoramic views of Courtenay Place and beyond. Dirty
Little Secret is the most cutting-edge venue to hit Wellington.
Their industrial-chic hideaway, inspired by the laneway bars of Melbourne, can host about 200 people.
They’re experts at shaking a cocktail and have a range of premium and craft beers, high-end wines, and spirits on offer. Look up or you might miss them!
Eat & drink
From snacks to epic sharing plates, from seasonal cocktails to your favourite beer and wine, we’ve got all the ingredients you need for a great time. The Dirty Little Secret experience is made to be shared. Bring your friends, sip, feast, and enjoy.
Crumpet is the kind of place you’ve probably walked past a few times and haven’t been quite sure what it’s about. The name suggests breakfast, but they don’t open until after lunch, although they do serve savory crumpets as bar snacks.
Crumpet is kind of the back entrance to the Opera House (we went to a show once and ended up exiting through the bar) and it’s perfectly located for pre-show drinks. Cocktails here are more of the classic varieties.
10. Heyday Beer Co.
In an industry that’s not known for its use of pastels, Heyday stands out. It’s hard to miss this mint green mecca at the top of Cuba Street, where you can watch your beer brewed and drink it too.
Heyday’s three directors come from diverse backgrounds – by trade, Hannah Blackwood was a graphic designer, Hamish Sail was a builder and project manager, and Andy Collins was a mechanical and electrical engineer. Their plan to open a brewery was hatched over beers, of course, while keen home brewers Hamish and Hannah took a three-month road trip in the US and stopped into every brewery they could to taste everything that they can get their hands on at the time of their travels.
After a long search for the right spot for what they wanted to create and dream up for a bar, the team took a former car battery shop and turned it into an industrial-meets-whimsy brewery, bar, and eatery. However, some of Heyday’s distinctive aesthetic was a result of a happy accident: the fuchsia flamingo wallpaper that’s launched a thousand bathroom selfies was a Trade Me find and intended to be temporary but has been a fixture since the bar opened in late 2017.
The space is beautiful, but it was designed primarily with the practicalities of brewing in mind. With a low wall separating the venue and brew spaces, Hannah notes that “the brewery runs the length of the venue, so you can see it from almost everywhere. It’s a working brewery, and we wanted the customer to almost feel like they are involved in the process.”
Heyday’s team believes “fresh is best” when it comes to beer, and their brews are constantly evolving and recipes being tweaked. With around 50 beers being released each year, from coffee-infused white stout to grapefruit New England IPAs, this is definitely a bar that rewards return visits. You’ll also find drinks from Te Aro Wine and Peckham’s Cider, and craft gins from Southward Distilling Co (with who Heyday share some of their tank space).
As for the food menu, Hannah describes it as “fresh, colorful, and seasonal”. While there are plenty of staple beer-drinking dishes like fries and burgers, there are also modern veggie dishes and vegan options. Pro tip: go on Thursdays to try the week’s new release beer alongside special food matches, like a spiced plum sour matched to baked brie with honey plum sauce.
On sunny days, you’ll find the outdoor space populated with patrons, pints, and pooches, with free water, food, and pats available to canine companions. There’s a tranche of regulars well-known to the Heyday team, but they’re always accepting applications for more.
264a Cuba Street, Te Aro (VIEW MAP)
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11. CGR Merchant & Co
CGR in this case stands for Cocktail, Gin, and Rum and this bar really is a top-quality merchant of all three. They do their own gin infusions like rhubarb and coconut gin or banoffee gin and then use them in delicious cocktails like the banoffee espresso martini.
(Image of a gingerbread cocktail)
We like that this bar is in the middle of the Courtenay Place party area but also removed from the chaos at the street level. The bar isn’t all that big so you’ll want to come early if you can but it’s buzzing and friendly inside.
12. Havana Bar
Havana Bar isn’t technically a dedicated cocktail bar, they focus on cocktails and wine as well, but we go for the amazing cocktail.
It’s in a colorful converted heritage house just behind Cuba Street and near the Lighthouse Cinema (post-movie drinks?). The house set-up is quite good for bigger groups as there’s a bit more space than many of the more intimate cocktail bars.
Havana’s cocktails are mostly around the $20 mark and include a classic, seasonal, and Cuban range with cheap mojitos on Fridays.
13. Little Beer Quarter
Little Beer Quarter is Wellington’s craft beer heaven, tucked away in the Edward St Precinct. With 14 rotating taps, 2 hand pulls & over 100 beers in the fridge; LBQ pours the best of NZ’s craft beer & cider scene, wine & international beer.
Match your beverage of choice with a specialty pizza, burger, or tasting plate from our seasonal gastro-pub menu.
14. Golding’s Free Dive
This is tucked away down a laneway, Golding’s Free Dive is
one of Wellington’s most-loved bars. But its name is a bit of an enigma: what’s ‘free’ about it, and what’s diving got to do with beer?
This cozy craft beer bar was founded by Sean Golding in early 2013.
The ‘Golding’s’ part is straightforward: The bar is located down an inner-city laneway famed for its foodie credentials:
Golding’s is flanked by a bakery, a chocolatier, and a cocktail bar – but it wasn’t always this way. Before he opened Golding’s, Sean saw that the laneway area could become something amazing: “Back then, it was quite rough, but I thought it had great potential”.
The bar has led the charge, and the area is now a culinary destination in its own right, topped off with the modern Kiwi eatery Shepherd, which Sean co-founded in 2016Free’: while some bars are only allowed to serve drinks from certain brands, Golding’s is a free house, which means they don’t have contracts with any breweries. This means they can put whatever they want on tap, and Sean says, “This means we can choose the best and freshest beer at any time”.
You’ll always find an ever-changing array of tap beer and cider from the best local breweries and some exciting imported drops too. There’s also a fridge full of bottled and canned beers, a small but perfectly formed menu of interesting wines, and some great whiskey and rum options. If that all sounds a bit daunting to you, just ask the staff for a recommendation – they really know their stuff.
The bar was inspired by “very modest neighbourhood bars in the USA where locals gather to drink and catch up – a third place, so to speak”. Golding’s has definitely become that community space for beer-loving Wellingtonians to meet. There’s a cohort of regulars, including many who live in the apartments above and pop down for drinks, and on sunny days you’ll have to be quick to nab a seat on the sheltered outdoor terrace. There are usually a few canine friends around for pats or feel free to BYO hound.
Inside the bar, you’ll see plenty of evidence of Sean’s creative background as a signwriter, set finisher, miniatures technician, and prop painter. The bar is a shrine to good design, with exposed brick, twinkling lights, kitsch taxidermy, hand-painted details, Star Wars memorabilia, and repurposed miscellany jostling for attention. It’s been described as “like drinking inside a pinball machine”, a description Sean approves of the light-up ‘BEER’ sign above the door has graced the Instagram of most beer-drinking locals.
While the bar serves a delicious array of salty snacks, if you’re in search of something more substantial, the collaborative ethos of the laneway comes into play. Just across the lane is Pizza Pomodoro, who have been “feeding our hungry patrons since day one” but you don’t even have to leave your pint – order your pizza at the bar, and it’ll arrive at your table in no time. They also serve authentic Neopolitan pizza from our friendly neighbors Pizza Pomodoro from Midday to 9 pm, Tuesday to Saturday. Just order at the bar. Head to Pizza Pomodoro’s website for up-to-date opening times. They are also a little bar, so we can’t do reservations, private functions, or cater to large groups comfortably. They are a non-smoking bar inside and outside on our patio.
15. Noble Rot Swan Lane
The essence of Noble Rot is, ‘Hey, come in, relax, sit down.’ We want to serve fine wines without fuss, without pretentiousness.
Maciej Zimny, Noble Rot Wine Bar founder and co-owner. Once you’ve made yourself comfortable, you’ll want to take your time over the wine list. There are hundreds of wines on offer, including more than 100 available by the glass. Winemaking regions from all around the world, including New Zealand, are represented; every palate is catered for. If you’re overwhelmed, award-winning sommelier Maciej Zimny – one of Noble Rot’s owners – or one of his super-knowledgeable staff is there to help you when you need assistance in choosing what wine can go with what meal with their expertise and knowledge they go above and beyond for you.
Are you after a snack? Pair your wine with oysters on the shell, a charcuterie board, or chicken liver parfait. Or settle in for a proper meal, ordering à la carte or indulging in a seasonal
dégustation menu served with wine matches(you can choose New Zealand, international, or a mixture).
Considering how universally praised Noble Rot’s food menu has been over the years, it could easily style itself as a fine-dining restaurant. But the owners have made a point of embracing the “wine bar” label instead; they want to make it clear that wine is their raison d’être.
After being two years after opening, they doubled down on this passion by launching Noble Wines, which offers wine education, consultancy, and supply. And yes, that means that if you try a wine you love at the bar, you can buy a bottle (or a case) to take home, right on the spot.
6 SWAN LANE, TE ARO, WELLINGTON (VIEW MAP)
16. Hanging Ditch
The Hanging Ditch – opened their doors in late 2015 with one goal in mind- to provide the good people of Wellington with quality drinks & excellent service, in a laid-back, approachable atmosphere.
Wellington’s iconic Hannah’s factory courtyard was the perfect location, slightly off the beaten track at that stage, but fast becoming a destination for people looking to put delicious things in their tummies. Five years down the line we’re proud to refer to ourselves as one of Wellington’s favorite watering holes, an opinion reinforced by our numerous regulars and returning guests- from nearby and further afield.
The Hanging Ditch is in the awesome Hannah’s Laneway which we love for all things food and drink. The décor in here is super cool with lots of (empty) spirits bottles hanging from the ceiling. It’s also very cozy and laidback with most of the seating in couches and armchairs. definitely the kind of place you mean to drop into for a drink and end up spending all night at.
Over the years we’ve grown and adapted
to various challenges (2020, we’re looking at you) but our ethos has remained the same- quality drinks in a relaxed laid-back atmosphere, with some of the best bar-banter in the city.
Come and have a taste! YOU WON’T BE DISAPPOINTED.
Leeds Street, Wellington (VIEW MAP)
Poquito lies outside of the hustle and bustle of Courtney Place down the quieter side of Tory Street, breaking boundaries with craft cocktail service and eclectic whisky. Poquito simply meaning “a little” embodies its translation very well.
It has a little of everything – a little intimate space, a little beer, and
a little wine. What it doesn’t have is a little of its character, because Poquito oozes good vibes, is a friendly host, and has a love for making quality beverages and food.
Situated on Tory Street, Poquito is quietly nestled in between the hustle of the inner city. Although the inside area is quite small, the space is utilized very well. The bar, coffee machine, and food preparations are all to the right of the room and the seating and tables are towards the back. The few seats that are positioned outside the cafe are perfect for sitting in the sunshine and observing the street life as it passes by.
Poquito offers a separate brunch and tapa menu each displaying Spanish and non-Spanish cuisine. Tapa’s range from their toasted sourdough, broccoli, feta, and almond ($14) to their Diablos A Caballo – a fancier Spanish way of saying dates wrapped in bacon ($11).
The majority of their beer and wine menu stays true to the theme and exhibits Spanish drops. However local beverages can be purchased also as Poquito is a big supporter of local brewers and makers.
Enthusiastic and confident behind the bar the Poquito crew turn the act of making cocktails into an art. Their fun and colorful cocktail list is a great example of what should be present at a fiesta. The delicious Rhubarb 75 ($15) with rhubarb-infused vodka and vanilla syrup is alive with color and flavour. However, as a lover of gin, you couldn’t go past the Hendricks, elderflower, and soda concoction with fresh mint and lime ($16).
If you need a place to meet up with a friend or read a book while nibbling on their delicious counter food, Poquito is your match. Its welcoming, intimate and friendly atmosphere will be perfect on those days when you need to escape the cold concrete streets.
They have an atmospheric retreat for lunch with actual Kiwi hospitality, a salacious rendezvous with Caffeine, and a spirit encyclopedia, all rolled into one. We are always in the lab creating new ingredients or researching old ones, but eschewing the stiffness of the classic cocktail bar in favor of relaxed, laid-back service and effortless libations.
Their dynamic spirits selection is continually changing to reflect the best of the best of any different style. The whisky selection emphasizes curated examples from important distilleries as opposed to the usual spread of generic age statements.
Weekly live music from Wellington’s indie songwriting scene provides the perfect backdrop to meetings with friends or explorative nights out, and we encourage anyone with an instrument or an original to come on by and perform.
Poquito exists as a small family dream to provide international hospitality and knowledge with a truly Kiwi approach. To that end we keep a commitment to Wellington’s hospitality family – absurd family pricing will always be found here.
Tory Street, Wellington (VIEW MAP)
18. The Arborist
The Arborist is a must-see venue in Wellington, they offer a wide range of selection of nature-inspired seasonal dishes & cocktails.
They are known as one of the best spots to visit in Wellington our rooftop bar is sheltered from the predominant Wellington wind. Find a peaceful spot to sit and enjoy a delicious cocktail with some food on the roof & watch the sun go down on a fine Welly day.
Their rooftop bar is the perfect escape from the city.
Frozen cocktails & spritzers are our specialty here with plenty to choose from. With a range of craft beers, wines, and top-shelf spirits, we have all your drinking needs covered. Make sure you make it for our daily happy hour offering our slushies 2 for $20 from 4-6 pm.
A garden-vibe bar is hidden 7 stories high.
If you are feeling peckish we have delicious stone-fired pizzas with a range of toppings, oysters, and other snacks. If you are a group wanting to graze over the afternoon you may want to order some of our platters to share.
Willis Street, Wellington
19. Rogue and Vagabound
The Rogue & Vagabond – Craft Beer Bar, located just off Cuba St in Glover Park specializes in amazing beer and also in a wide variety of live music. Jazz, Blues, Rock’n’Roll – you name it. Great outside area where you can sit in the sun, nibble on some of the delicious pub food or play with your dog! (that you are more than welcome to bring).
More than just another attempt to crack open a craft beer bar in Wellington, The Rogue, and Vagabond
is man’s best friend — there’s even a resident bulldog to prove it. Situated in a box in Glover Park just off Cuba Street, The Rogue is the latest edition to an area known for its thriving bar scene.On those rare days when the sun shines on the capital, The Rogue offers up space in the park to kick back, relax and bring your pooch to play with the Lord of Glover Park, bulldog Bruce Robert Vagabond. Follow Bruce inside and you’ll meet dimly lit décor, brightened by a mishmash of fabrics that look like your grandma’s curtains.
For music lovers, daily singers/songwriters crank out sets under green neon lights. For art connoisseurs, there’s an art gallery showcasing some of Wellington’s latest and greatest burgeoning talent. Jazz, blues, and rock are routine at The Rogue; as is grabbing a free glass of bubbles if you happen to drop in on an exhibition opening night.
If you’re a craft beer novice don’t worry; The Rogue staff are on tap to help. The classic Tuatara Aotearoa Pale Ale is a regular, while the Wellington ParrotDog “BitterBitch” brew is on hand if you fancy trying something different. The Marlborough Omaka Springs Sauvignon Blanc makes a nice addition to hanging out with Bruce and the sunshine ($9 glass, $40 bottle). There’s a beer to fit all tastes, so make sure you ask the bearded barmen to help you find something you’ll like.
But it was Bruce’s burgers that really got me going. A decent range of snacks, feeds, and pizzas are on offer, so dig in. I’ve been craving the very unladylike BBQ bacon cheeseburger with curly fries ($18); the home minced patties and curly fries are comfort food plus. But the “Never Mind the Bollocks” pizza with chorizo, ham, salami, and rocket fuel sauce would also hit the spot ($20). Rogue portions are generous and the prices reasonable, perfect for the student or struggling artist pocket. The location is ideal at this sweet little place if you’re looking for a night out in Wellington. After a burger and beer at The Rogue, head back to Cuba for a dessert cocktail at Good Luck; or if it’s a Friday head down to the Wellington Night Market at 116 Left Bank for something sweet. The Rogue is a welcome haven amongst the sometimes intimidating Cuba Street scene. Space inside on Fridays and gig nights tends to be somewhat limited, so make sure you book ahead or get Bruce to grab you a table early. There’s a distinct rock’n’roll theme in the music, the dress of the staff, and tap beer handles (records) here now. Along with some interesting art and a good selection of craft beers, both on tap and bottled.
All of this goes down quite nicely on an evening with the doors opened out to the park and a thin-crust pizza on the way (pizza or toasties) to accompany a delicious beer (yay, they have real oatmeal stout!).
Rogue and Vagabond have live local music on weekend evenings and the most interestingly decorated toilet doors I’ve seen in a good long while (points if you can find the toilet entryway from the bar).
A really pleasant place to hang out and try another liquid creation from those who have the time and talent to create for the rest of us.
Garrett Street, Wellington (VIEW MAP)
Thanks for reading/watching and for your continuous support guys!
Also, thanks, FireTheLier for everything that you do for me.