Feeling a tad thirsty side & it being mid afternoon I popped in to Father Ted’s on the corner of Queen & Wellesley Streets in downtown Auckland for a pint. As I walked through the door Irish accents & laughter warmed the room. There was definitely a hint of blarney about the place.
I ordered a Guinness and asked the barmaid what the chef’s food was like? “Ah da man’s food is to die for was her response.” I felt instantly at home.
Father Ted’s must have the longest happy hour in Auckland. It lasts from 4pm-7pm & runs Wed, Thursday & Friday. I stayed until 5pm & thoroughly enjoyed myself. If you like playing pool, quizzes, karaoke, live music & genuine Irish hospitality you’ll appreciate Father Ted’s. If not, then maybe there’s a yoga class going on somewhere you’ll enjoy.
As far as traditional Irish bars go, they don’t come more Irish than Father Ted’s.
I arrived at Spitting Feathers just after 5pm on a Wednesday. It’s a predominantly English bar that’s not your typical English bar. You won’t
find photo’s of the Queen or Union Jacks here. What you will find though is genuine hospitality & a range of independent beers with no affiliation to any brewery.
It was just as well I arrived when I did. The bar was filling up fast with an eclectic mix of thirsty suits, backpackers & locals. It was easy to see why. Wednesday is steak night. For just $20 you get a hearty steak & chips with 2 pints, 3 bottles or 2 glasses of wine. That’s a great deal by anybody’s measure.
I ordered a medium rare sirloin and it came perfectly grilled with a generous serving of crispy hand cut chips. Just the way I like it. The menu is also stacked with a good range of snacks & wholesome bar meals. That said, what I enjoyed most about Spitting Feathers was the variety of English beers on tap & its range of international bottled beer & cider.
Spitting Feathers is an Upstairs bar conveniently at 16 Wyndham Street just off Queen St in central Auckland.
I’d been doing my last minute souvenir shopping in Queen Street
and my feet were feeling a little achy when I came upon the QF tavern. Angie the bar maid from Peru was warm & welcoming. There was a gaming area out the back & a large screen in the main bar area. It looked like a crowd of people were gathering to watch a rugby test match on the big screen. I ordered a Lion red sat down & enjoyed the revelry & banter with the other sports fans.
The QF is a traditional kiwi bar without airs & graces. There’s no pretension about the place. Angie told me they do live music between 5-7pm on week days & karaoke on a Wednesday night.
If you like to keep it real, stop in at the QF Tavern for a beer 131 Queen Street.
Brew on Quay
I was enjoying a leisurely stroll along the Auckland waterfront & remembered a friend had told me about an independent “free house” meaning a bar with no brewery affiliation. I liked the idea so when I found Brew on Quay Street I was more than happy to take a look
inside. Brew Bar was once the original Wharf Police Station. What struck me most about the place was how it had been appreciatively restored.
I was fortunate to be served by one of the 3 original Brew Boys’ in person. Simon’s passion for craft beer is obvious. He told me they stock over 100 local & international craft beers so they can satisfy the most discerning palate.
The menu is extensive and comes with a recommended beer match for every meal. I chose the sake & soy marinated tuna matched with wheat beer followed up with a Guinness Chocolate Mousse accompanied with a stout. Both were perfectly matched.
Brew on Quay at 102 Quay Street is a great place to relax & indulge yourself.
I wanted to catch up with a few friends near the airport before boarding my flight out. Szimpla fitted the bill perfectly. It’s a family friendly gastro bar only 2 minutes from the airport. And being a Saturday afternoon it was even better because kids under 12 eat free (one child per dining adult) every Saturday
Szimpla has a retro fit out with lots of little nooks and crannies where you can chill & relax or wide open spaces for those who want space to sprawl. I was the first to arrive so having free Wi-Fi was an added bonus that gave me time to catch up with my email before my friends started to roll in.
I shouted a round of the Hawkes Bay Independent Brewery beers & we all sat down to enjoy lunch. The New Zealand green lipped mussels & retro beer battered dory & chips were clearly the most popular meals on the menu. I had the mussels & they were sensational.
Szimpla gastro bar is conveniently located under the Ibis Hotel on 2 Leonard Issit Drive right next to the Airport.