WellingtonEat & Drink
Four colourful cocktails lined up on the counter at Crumpet, a bar located on Manners Street in Te Aro, Wellington.

Mix it up at Wellington’s cocktail bars

A bartender is handing two cocktails to a patron at Crumpet, a cocktail and wine bar located at the Opera House in Te Aro, Wellington.
A bartender pours liquor into a cocktail shaker. Alcohol bottles line the illuminated shelves behind them.
The interior of Humdinger Bar, red and blue neon lights illuminate the wood-paneled space. A bartenders is pouring a pint and there is a retro American dive-bar vibe.
2 yellow cocktails on a wooden bar in Hawthorn Lounge.
The interior of The Library, a cocktail bar on Courtney Place in Te Aro, Wellington. The bartender is using a flame to toast the garnish on a drink while two patrons are sitting at the bar.
Two cocktails on a green marble table at Kuikui Lane, a bar located on Victoria Street in Te Aro, Wellington.
A member of the Dragonfly bar staff stands behind the bar pouring a cocktail mixer into five glasses. Behind are shelves full of bottles.
A bartender is handing two cocktails to a patron at Crumpet, a cocktail and wine bar located at the Opera House in Te Aro, Wellington.

Crumpet

109 Manners Street, Te Aro, Wellington

Tucked into the corner of The Opera House, Crumpet is a cute and cosy bar.

Cocktails and, you guessed it, crumpets, are the star of the show here.

Thirsty? Let the talented bar staff shake up your tastebuds with a new take on an old favourite. Or, flick through the extensive Rolodex of cocktail options to tempt your palate. Seasonal drinks are always on offer, reflecting the weather or the mood of the evening.

Crumpets are served with a selection of sweet or savoury toppings. They’re a great snack to start or finish an evening.

Crumpet
A bartender pours liquor into a cocktail shaker. Alcohol bottles line the illuminated shelves behind them.

Elixir

8 Chews Lane, Wellington

Elixir is Wellington’s premiere bitters and Chartreuse bar. Found down Chews Lane off Willis Street, it provides a cosy oasis among the busy office and apartment blocks. It also boasts the only full kitchen attached to a cocktail bar in the city. Elixir caters to serious aficionados and people keen to learn about unusual wines and the subtleties of spirits. Its friendly and knowledgeable bar staff can steer you through the eclectic drinks list.

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The interior of Humdinger Bar, red and blue neon lights illuminate the wood-paneled space. A bartenders is pouring a pint and there is a retro American dive-bar vibe.

Humdinger

89 Ghuznee Street, Te Aro, Wellington

With red floors, neon signs, wood-panelled walls and a jukebox on free play, Humdinger is anything but subtle. It’s your friendly neighbourhood dive bar that might just become your new local. 

With a range of tap beers, cocktails, and a few wines, Humdinger aims to make the whole experience inviting and fun. The beverage menu has 12 house cocktails that play on the classics with a twist. The jukebox in the corner encourages you to pick your favourite song to go with your drink and pizza. If you’re hungry, deep-dish pizzas that riff off familiar favourites and tasty bar snacks are on offer. (And yes, takeaway is available.) 

From the owners of Puffin and Goldings, Humdinger means ‘remarkably excellent’, and it’s also quite fun to say. A very fitting name for a fun and excellent bar.

Humdinger
2 yellow cocktails on a wooden bar in Hawthorn Lounge.

Hawthorn Lounge

82 Tory Street, Te Aro, Wellington

With a 1920s speakeasy or gentlemen’s lounge vibe, Hawthorn Lounge is a hidden gem you must seek out.

Head through the unmarked doorway, go up the stairs and you’ll find a swanky spot where the bartenders really know their cocktails. Sit at the bar as the staff entertain you with a history lesson on your favourite cocktail. Or, nab a leather couch by the open fire and relax as they concert your own bespoke drink.

Hawthorn Lounge
The interior of The Library, a cocktail bar on Courtney Place in Te Aro, Wellington. The bartender is using a flame to toast the garnish on a drink while two patrons are sitting at the bar.

The Library

53 Courtenay Place, Te Aro, Wellington

Step out of the bright lights and fast pace of Courtenay Place, ascend the flight of stairs, push open the door to The Library and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a new world.

The Library opened in 2009 and has built a reputation for its cocktails and decadent desserts. The bar is comprised of intimate booths and cosy nooks, surrounded by shelves lined with books (we’re talking real, actual books). Oozing warmth and old-world charm, the bar is dimly lit by table lamps and vintage framed prints adorn the walls.

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Two cocktails on a green marble table at Kuikui Lane, a bar located on Victoria Street in Te Aro, Wellington.

Kuikui Lane

118 Victoria Street, Te Aro, Wellington

Tucked away in a little laneway off Victoria Street, Kuikui Lane is a bar with a warmth that doesn’t just come from its cosy size or low lighting. There’s a feeling of familiarity wrapped up in the quirky, yet classy interior.

Primarily a gin and cocktail bar, it’s Kuikui’s artful and subtle creativity that sets its menu and mixology apart.

It’s also unique in its ingredient choices — all the bar’s food and drink products are from Aotearoa, showcasing the breadth and quality of locally made.

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A member of the Dragonfly bar staff stands behind the bar pouring a cocktail mixer into five glasses. Behind are shelves full of bottles.

Dragonfly

70 Courtenay Place, Te Aro, Wellington

You’ll feel a world away from the bustle of Courtenay Place at Dragonfly. With intimate dining areas and an atmospheric courtyard out the back, it’s an easy spot to spend an evening.

Enjoy modern Asian cuisine designed for sharing. The menu spans the continent, offering classic dishes with contemporary twists. Dumplings, curry, salads, and snacks all reflect the seasonal produce and regional flavour highlights.

Dragonfly’s bar and bamboo courtyard are excellent for sampling their cocktails. Classics and newer creations are available, and look just as good as they taste.

Dragonfly