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New Zealand

Recommended restaurants on New Zealand's South Island


Arrowtown (Queenstown)
Saffron, Buckingham St, Arrowtown
In warm weather you can dine on the patio, and on cool days you can sit by the fireplace of this charming restaurant.
Great pastas, inventive salads, and lovely sandwiches - try the grilled chicken with brie - all made with the freshest ingredients.
Phone:  64.3.442.0131
Hours:  Lunch and dinner daily
Credit cards accepted:  AE, MC, V
Lunch from:    13NZD
Dinner from:   27NZD

Blenheim
Bellafico Caffee & Wine Bar, 17 Maxwell Road
Good pizzas, a nice way with venison, and great desserts make Bellafico a good choice any time
Phone:  64.3.577.6072
Hours:  Open for lunch and dinner daily
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V

D'Urville Wine Bar & Brasserie, 52 Queen Street, PO Box 977
One of the best restaurants in town, the d'Urville Brasserie makes the most of the region's wine and local ingredients. Praised by the New York and Los Angeles Times, the restaurant is lively and fo0d is beautifully and imaginatively prepared. Reservations advised.
Phone:  64.3.577.9945
Hours:  Closed for lunch on the weekends.
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V

Hunter's Wines Restaurant, Rapaura Road
One of the most attractive vineyard restaurants in the area, Hunter's offers dining outdoors or in the farmhouse. Rack of Lamb, Venision, and Salmon are featured. And you can be assured that food and wine will be perfectly matched.
Phone:  64.3.572.8489
Fax:  64.3.572.8457
Hours:  11:30AM to 2:30PM Monday through Friday; and 6PM to 9:30PM Thursday through Saturday
Email:  wine@hunters.co.nz
Web:   www.hunters.co.nz
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V

Rocco's, 5 Dodson Street
Specializing in home-made pasta and prosciutto, Rocco's also has good seafood and spit-roasts. It's a good choice when you're in the mood for Italian.
Phone:  64.3.578.6940
Hours:  Monday through Saturday from 5PM until late
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main Courses from   20NZD
Three-course dinners from  20NZD

Christchurch
Annie's Wine Bar, Christchurch Arts Centre, Corner of Hereford and Rolleston
With a great wine list, a fabulous terrace opening onto the Arts Centre, and terrific food, Annie's is hard to beat. We liked the smoked chicken and brie pizza and the chocolate and roasted almond torte.
Phone:  03.365.0566
Hours:  11:30AM to 2:30PM and 5:30PM to 9:30PM
Credit cards accepted:  
Main courses from:    14NZD

Antigua Boat Sheds Cafe, 2 Cambridge Terrace
In addition to renting canoes on the River Avon, the Antigua Boat Sheds has a pleasant terrace café that's a great spot for breakfast, brunch, or a drink.
Phone:  03.366.5885
Hours:  7AM to 6PM daily; closing at 5PM in winter
Credit cards accepted:  

Azure, 128 Oxford Terrace
Chargrilled specialties served indoors or on their terrace opposite the Bridge of Remembrance.
Phone:  03.365.6088
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main courses from:    15NZD

Canterbury Tales, 9 Kilmore Street in the Parkroyal Christchurch
The fine-dining room in the Parkroyal, Canterbury Tales has received the Overall Best Restaurant in the city award four times. Service, wine, food, and ambience are all first-rate.
Phone:  03.365.7799 Reservations required
Hours:  6PM until late Tuesday through Saturday
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main courses from:    27NZD

Coyote Street Bar and Restaurant, 126 Oxford Terrace
Specializing in Santa Fe Southwestern cuisine, Coyote is just the ticket to satisfy a Tex-Mex craving. The seared lamb fillet is outstanding. The pork ribs are tasty. And there are some interesting vegetarian dished with pumpkin and feta. The atmosphere is hip and attractive.
Phone:  03.366.6055
Hours:  Lunch and dinner daily
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main courses from:    20NZD

Dux de Lux, Corner Hereford and Montreal Streets
This lively brewpub serves bar snacks, seafood, pizza, and vegetarian dishes from their Arts Centre courtyard or in their Tudor stone hall. Very popular on weekends when there's live music.
Phone:  64.03.366.6919
Hours:  11AM to midnight daily
Credit cards accepted:  
Main courses from:    13NZD

Le Bon Bolli, Corner of Worcester and Montreal
Chef Phillip Kraal has two restaurants here: a casual brasserie downstairs, and a fine-dining salon upstairs. The ambience is sort of Tuscan hilltown, while the cooking is decidedly French. You'll get a great meal and great service here.
Phone:  64.03.374.9444
Hours:  10AM until late daily
Credit cards accepted:  
Main courses from:    11NZD
Fixed price menu from:  55NZD

Mona Vale, 63 Fendalton Road, Riccarton
The café at this beautiful turn-of-the-century home serves lunch or afternoon tea in their superb English style gardens.
Phone:  64.03.348.9660
Hours:  Garden tours with lunch or tea are available between 11AM AND 1:30PM
Credit cards accepted:  
Tour and tea from:   23NZD
Tour and lunch from:  40NZD

Nga Hau E Wha National Marae (Marae of the Four Wi, 250 Pages Road
The largest traditional Maori gathering place in New Zealand offers a Night of Maori Magic that includes dinner from the traditional earth oven and entertainment.
Phone:  03.386.7685 Dinner reservations required
Hours:  Night of Maori Magic at 7PM Tuesday through Thursday
Credit cards accepted:  
Dinner from:   55NZD

Pescatore, 50 Park Terrace in The George hotel, 8001
Recently recognized as one of the ten best restaurants in New Zealand, Pescatore offers Pacific Rim cuisine emphasizing fresh seafood. The Degustation menu treats diners to five courses matched with fine New Zealand wines.
Phone:  64.03.371.0257
Hours:  Tuesday through Saturday 6:30PM to 10PM
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main courses from:    32NZD
Degustation menu with wine:  155NZD

Six Chairs Missing, 36 New Regent Street
With dishes like honey-roasted duck with peppercorn sauce, sole with char-grilled lemons, and green-lipped mussels with beer and bacon, it's no wonder this spot won the Restaurant of the Year award in 1995 and 1996. Save room for the homemade ice cream.
Phone:  03.366.4197
Hours:  11AM to 5PM and 6PM until late Tuesday through Saturday
Credit cards accepted:  
Main courses from:    20NZD

The Boulevard, Corner of Oxford Terrace and Hereford Square
Located on Chirstchurch's "restaurant row," the Boulevard is a stylish bistro specializing in Mediterranean-influenced cuisine.
Phone:  03.374.6676
Credit cards accepted:  

Viaduct, 136 Oxford Terrace
This Italian restaurant with a manuka wood-fired oven specializes in seafood. Great breads with wood-fired tapenades, pizzas, and pastas. And when the weather's nice, you can dine on the sidewalk and watch the world go by.
Phone:  03.377.9968
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main courses from:    15NZD

Motueka (Abel Tasman National Park)
Gothic Gourmet Restaurant Café, 208 High Street
Occupying the old Methodist church, this café has won many awards and is definitely the best in the area.
Phone:  64.3.528.6699
Credit cards accepted:  

Seafarers Restaurant, Inlet Road, Kaiteriteri
Not surprisingly, this fully licensed restaurant near Kaiteriteri Beach specializes in seafood.
Phone:  64.3.527.8114
Credit cards accepted:  

Mount Cook
Alpine Restaurant, Hermitage Aoraki Mount Cook, Aoraki Mount Cook Alpine Village
Serving buffet-style meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the Alpine packs in the tour busses at lunch time. The buffet does offer some interesting choices, and the food is generally good quality, though not much of a bargain if you eat sensibly. If you're anxious to get back outside for your next activity, you can at least eat here quickly.
Phone:  64.03.435.1809
Hours:  6:30AM to 9:30AM, 11:30AM to 2PM, and 6PM to 9:30PM daily year 'round
Credit cards accepted:  AE, MC, V
Lunch buffet:   32

Chamois Bar and Lounge, Glencoe Wing, Aoraki Mount Cook Alpine Village
Open only during the summer, this is the spot in town for nachos, burgers, pizzas, or a sandwich. The convivial atmosphere is about the best around too. Popular with the locals.
Credit cards accepted:  
Meals from:    11NZD

Panorama Restaurant, Hermitage Aoraki Mount Cook, Aoraki Mount Cook Alpine Village
The views are the real star here in the formal dining room of the Hermitage. Service is good, the wine list is nice, and local cervena, beef, and lamb are nicely prepared.
Phone:  64.03.435.1809
Hours:  6PM to 9:30PM daily during summer (October through May)
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V

Nelson
Boat Shed Cafe, 350 Wakefield Quay
Known far and wide for its Golden Bay crabs prepared Singapore style, this bay front boat shed serves terrific seafood in relaxed, over-the-water surroundings. Voted Nelson's Best Restaurant in 2000.
Phone:  64.3.546.9783
Hours:  10AM until late daily
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main Courses from:   7NZD

Broccoli Row, 5 Buxton Square
If the weather's fine, which it usually is in Nelson, reserve a table on the beautiful courtyard here. Seafood's fresh and imaginatively prepared. And there are lots of appealing choices for vegetarians.
Phone:  64.3.548.9621
Hours:   9:30AM to 9:30PM Monday through Saturday
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main Courses from:   18NZD

Italian Gourmet, 195 Hardy Street
You can dine indoors or out on Mediterranean specialities at this tiny bistro. Consider making a meal from the large antipasto assortment.
Phone:  64.3.545.6220
Credit cards accepted:  MC, V

Queenstown
Boardwalk Seafood Restaurant & Bar, Upstairs Steamer Wharf Building
The views of Lake Wakatipu from the second-story windows of this sophisticated restaurant are almost as good as the food. It's a sure bet for one of the best meals in town, particularly for imaginatively prepared seafood. Bill Clinton ate here during his 1998 visit.
Phone:  03.442.5630
Hours:  Opening for dinner at 6PM
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main Course from:    23NZD

Fishbone Bar & Grill, 7 (Upper) Beach Street
If you want killer seafood, but don't want to change out of your jeans or spend a bundle, try Fish Bone. This lively, funky café has attitude in spades and good blue cod. Expect to wait - you probably won't mind.
Phone:  03.442.6768
Hours:  Opening for dinner at 5:30PM
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main courses from:    13NZD

Fraser?s Bar & Grill, Steamer Wharf
Terrific food and better than average service at this attractive spot on Steamer Wharf. Try the Thai Green Curry or Filo filled with Feta and Pine Nuts.
Phone:  03.442.5111
Hours:  Opening at 4PM daily
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V
Main Courses from:   13NZD

Gibbston Valley Wines, Ltd., Gibbston, RD1
There's hardly a more pleasant spot for lunch in Queenstown than on the terrace of this award-winning winery. We especially enjoyed the Mediterranean platter and the Antipasto. The scenery is beautiful. And prices are surprisingly reasonably. Tour the wine cave before or after your lunch.
Phone:  64.3.442.6910
Hours:  Lunch is served from 12N to 3PM daily
Web:   www.gibbston-valley-wines.co.nz
Credit cards accepted:  

The 19th, Steamer Wharf
With its attractive terrace right on Lake Wakatipu across from the TSS Earnslaw, this restaurant has as enjoyable a location as any in Queenstown. The food's great too. Thai Beef Salad and Smoked Chicken Salad with spicy peanut sauce are stand outs.
Phone:  03.442.4006
Hours:  Lunch and dinner daily
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V

The Bathhouse, Marine Parade
This lovely restaurant in a Victorian bathhouse dating from 1911is perfect for a special occasion. The crab cakes are wonderful. The beef, served with mashed potatoes "enriched with duck," is indescribably good. And the grouper with Champagne Hollandaise is sinful. Dress up and take money.
Phone:  03.442.5625
Hours:  Closed Monday
Credit cards accepted:  AE, DC, MC, V

Westport (West Coast)
Bay House Café, Tauranga Bay
In a 1920 beach house with great views, Bay House Café has won the Best Café in the region award a couple years running. Great food and service and wonderful ambience. Far and away the best bet in the area.
Phone:  64.03.789.7133
Hours:  9AM to 9PM daily
Email:  dine@bayhousecafe.co.nz
Credit cards accepted:  AE, MC, V
Three-course dinner from:   45NZD