Working up an appetite in Queenstown is unavoidable: all those adventure and sightseeing and tour attractions will certainly make you really hungry! So it really is happy then that you will find masses of fantastic places to eat in Queenstown, and most of them can be quickly reached on foot from your Queenstown resort. Without producing any outright recommendations, I’m here to point you in the right direction for an above-average dinner experience in one of the worlds most gorgeous settings…
First thing worth remembering is that eating establishments in Queenstown are quite used to catering for the throngs of people year round. In the winter season you will usually get a roaring log fire and in the summer months the climate is comfortable enough to eat outside with vistas over the majestic mountain ranges.
Talking of views, the following are among the finest places to eat and also look at the amazing scenery. Among the best are Wai Waterfront, The Coronation Bathhouse, Lombardi, FiNZ (seafood), the Yacht Club Bar, Waterfront Bar and Bistro, the Skyline Restaurant, Prime, Pier 19, Flame, Grind Bar and Caf (views of the Shotover River), The Winehouse & Kitchen (looking over the Kawarau Gorge) – and that’s just to start. When you are actually in Queenstown you’ll swiftly get a sense for which locations will likely offer the very best view!
Queenstown is not exactly a coat and tie sort of location so the informal cafe scene thrives here – Joes Garage, Vudu, Dux de Lux and Bobs Weigh are four of the local favorites – but you’ll find plenty of other amazing cafes as well so do not be scared to just roam around and find one that looks nice. You will find more good cafes in this town than we have room to include! Most offer breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner; several of them are fully licensed.
On the lookout for somewhere a little more classier? don’t worry there’s plenty of classier joints as well. Try one of these establishments in the mid to upper class spectrum with costs to match: Gantleys, Tatler, Eichardts (lunch only), Wai Waterfront, The Botswana Butchery, Amisfield Winery Bistro, The Bunker, Flame (South African), Skyline Restaurant, Inspire, Prime, Les Alpes, Captains, Pier 19. Lucianos (Italian), Solera Vino, The Observatory, Roaring Megs, Surreal, The Millhouse at Millbrook Resort, Birches at Nugget Point, Saffron (Arrowtown), The Skyline Restaurant, Fishbone Bar & Grill (seafood), Vknow (in Fernhill), Threesixty Restaurant and Bar.
There’s lots in the form of ethnic cuisine as well so essentially any taste is catered for. Youll find great pizzas, Indian, Thai, Japanese, Lebanese, French, Nepalese, Mexican and more. Ask at the hotel for a suggestion, or set off and search for your favourite flavour.
If you are more about the socialising than the dining per se then you’ll find some excellent food at the clubs around town, including Guilty, appropriately located in the original Magistrates Courthouse, The Ballarat Trading Co, the Pig & Whistle, Brazz on the Green, Chicos, Montys, Pog Mahones (Irish), Bezu Bar and Restaurant, the hugely popular Winnies Gourmet Pizza Bar and Speights Ale House.
A tad further afield, but worth the time are Saffron, The Stables, Mantra (Indian) and The Postmasters House in Arrowtown, Birches at exclusive Nugget Point and some very attractive winery restaurants, including Amisfield, Gibbston Valley and Carrick (in Bannockburn, approximately 40 minutes). For more casual out-of-town fare, try Joes Garage in Arrowtown (yes, theres one there too), or the stylish Hole in One Caf & Bar at Millbrook Resort. Or take a stroll around Arrowtown and discover for yourself: there are several good little dining places to be had here.
Pack a picnic and head for the hills: There are a number of wonderful delicatessens in Queenstown all retailing lovely fresh artisan foods, like local fruits and veges, hand-made cheese, and freshly caught salmon (smoked or straight up). Why not load up a picnic and head away for lunch in those golden hills? Couple of my fave spots to go shopping are the Ardmore St Food Co and the Mediterranean Market.. And dont forget to throw in a bottle of the regions well-known Pinot Noir.
For a memorable lunch, we suggest the brilliant Botswana Butchery or Eichardts Hotel; not the most economical in town, but certainly unique.
Cheap and cheerful? Kiwi’s love a good burger and they’re extremely good at producing them, the premium type. Try them out at Fergburgers.
Fish and Chips (aka FnC’s) on the waterfront is also a great low cost option: try Aggies Shack, PJs, FiNZ or the Fishbone Bar & Grill. Superb!
And, finally, in addition to eating by the water, you can eat on it. The historical steamship, TSS Earnslaw offers scenic dinner cruises with a carvery self serve buffet through the spring, summer and autumn months (October to May), every night each week.
I know that may be quite the list of alternatives! There are loads more, and even though its impossible to include every restaurant, caf, club and tavern in this gorgeous New Zealand resort, We hope we have offered you a couple of decent ideas. Bon apptit!
Sarah Boyle is known as an independent travel author from New Zealand. She travels alot, but is just as content remaining at home, especially if it involves an adventure to the South Island and a vacation at her favorite Queenstown lodging. Find out more on the subject of siteseeing in Queenstown.