Introducing the top 50
Our task was to find the very best cafes Auckland has to offer. The cafes Metro’s judges deemed the best out of a list of more than 300 are pretty diverse. Yes, some of them look the same, with butchers tiles and Edison bulbs used in budget-friendly frequency, but there are pint-sized, 15-seater cafes as well as giant, canteen-like dining rooms. There are places like Bestie and Were Bros, where you’ll likely be served by the owner, and others like Takapuna Beach Cafe and Odettes, where systems are so well oiled that the experience is lovely for a different reason. There’s formula and there’s heart, and they’re not always mutually exclusive.
There were more than 20 cafes we were very sad to exclude — that’s how tight this year’s list was. Some have simply lost their spark. Sometimes a cafe scored as highly on food, service, coffee and comfort as another, but lost out when it came to the question, “How badly do we want to go back?” We celebrated cafes that make us love our city, that we’re proud to take visitors to. And when you’re sitting in that sunny window with the excellent city view or walking along the beach with an excellent takeaway lunch, we hope you’ll agree.