While working from home in New Zealand free time throughout the week was mostly spent chilling out, enjoying the sunshine, and staying close to home in order to get enough rest for an early work start. However, we still had the pleasure of enjoying some delicious meals out and about Christchurch, and discover some unique bars to have a drink at. While there are loads of places to eat and drink out and about, here are some of my favourite spots around the city!
Spagalimis Pizza: This Christchurch chain of pizzerias offers both eat in and takeaway options, and with a wide range of pizzas to choose from and a family friendly atmosphere it’s an incredibly relaxed spot to grab a slice. We opted for a half-and-half pizza in the large size to share in order to get the best price without compromising the flavours we wanted, and it was more than enough! My Thai Chicken was delicious, but a sneaky taste of Kazimir’s Mediterranean Lamb pizza quickly made me realise what I wish I had ordered, but hey, sharing is caring right?!
Hell Pizza: Continuing our search for great pizzas, we couldn’t resist one of our favourites at Hell Pizza. This grunge themed takeaway and restaurant originated in New Zealand and has grown to become a popular chain, with locations across the country. We can’t get enough of the Pandemonium gourmet pizza, with chicken, cranberry and camembert toppings! The takeaway option is even more appealing for us when we’re feeling lazy, as there are frequent voucher codes and offers so along with the delicious topping options available, these pizzas are to die for!
The Bicycle Thief: A short drive south out of town is this adorable cottage style restaurant situated right in the middle of sprawling fields, an old vineyard and nearby rolling hills. The quiet tranquility of such a beautiful venue, along with the carefully curated interiors ensure a classy and stylish meal. The menu itself has so many inviting options it was a tough decision to make, but I eventually chose the butternut squash and goats cheese cannelloni. While it was truly delicious, the portion was much more than I could handle, which meant no room for dessert this time! Prices are a little higher than an average meal out, but you certainly get your money’s worth with such wonderful dishes. Definitely worth a visit for a relaxed but elegant occasion!
Burgers & Beers Inc.: This diner style restaurant does exactly what it say it does, at an affordable price. This is another Christchurch based chain, with a quirky interior and BIG burgers to satisfy any food craving. If great food that doesn’t break the bank is what you’re after, this is the perfect stop off. Their onion rings and aioli sauce are also heavenly, a must have to accompany your burger!
Pure Pulp: Situated in the Re:Start mall in the heart of the city centre, this tiny smoothie bar is as busy as the bustling mall itself. With to-go service being your only option, you can either pull up a seat at the mall, or as we did, head to a favourite spot in the park to enjoy a refreshing smoothie in the sunshine. With a huge variety of fruits to go in your drink, and an eclectic mix of flavours it’s hard to resist one of these bad boys! The smoothies have an emphasis on organic juices and superfood vegetables, so for us it was the perfect midmorning fuel to keep us going for the rest of a busy sightseeing day! There’s plenty of options in the Re:Start mall to grab food and drinks on the go, but for a healthy alternative that tastes just as good Pure Pulp is the ideal stop.
Black Betty: This unique, edgy cafe is right in the centre of town, and offer the tastiest breakfasts around. A mix of full English options, and healthier, hipster inspired breakfasts, whether a hangover cure or a health kick is what you’re after you’ll find what you need here! As a caffeine teetotaller I left it up to Kazimir to try their own coffee blend, but I trust it was good stuff! We opted for classic bacon and eggs for breakfast, but with a Black Betty twist you’re treated to ciabatta toast, and a spicy tomato relish on the side. Washed down with a fresh juice, we felt ready to take on the day!
The Last Word: Situated down my favourite Christchurch Street, of New Regent Street this whisky and cocktail lounge are embracing an art deco theme and prohibition style bar experience. With outdoor and indoor seating, it’s a great location to sit and watch the world go by with a cold drink in your hand. With beautifully presented (not to mention strong!) drinks available you’ll easily find something you’ll enjoy, while also trying something a bit different and new. While neither of us are particularly big whisky fans, they do also offer cocktails, beers, wine & cider, so fear not if whisky isn’t your thing, the expert bar staff will sort you out!
The Institution: My personal favourite bar, also on New Regent Street The Institution has a speakeasy style, with upstairs seating to give the best views to people watch from. The cosy bar is ideal for a quiet drink, spending time with great people and great beers. As a cider lover, my drink of choice is the Zeffer Apple Crumble Infused Cider; it tastes like Christmas! We’ve been here on a couple of occasions, and the bar staff are always friendly and helpful, and despite being a small space you don’t feel cramped in. A must-go place out of the many fabulous places Christchurch has to offer.
What are your favourite places to eat and drink in Christchurch? Any dishes that really stand out? Let me know!