Funky or folky, the sheer variety of dining options in Dunedin will surprise you. Following is just a small taste of what's on offer; we suggest you visit www.insidersdunedin.co.nz/culinary-insider or www.zomato.com/dunedin to whet your appetite further!
An exciting and hugely popular offering from one of Dunedin’s most influential hospitality couples – Chef Hannes Bareiter and Melanie Hartmann – tītī is found within the stylish Hotel St Clair. Expect a dazzling menu with plenty of seasonal influences and sometimes surprising flavour combinations, with sea views to top it all off. Our advice... book ahead.
24 The Esplanade
Wains Hotel has a luxe new destination eatery, The Press Club. The beautifully decorated ground floor restaurant is a wash of green velvet, muted golds and art deco touches. The menu focuses on local produce celebrated through diverse international influences and is complemented by an excellent drinks list, where whiskey is the hero. This is a bespoke bar and restaurant pays homage to Dunedin’s original haunt for editors and publishers in the 1870s.
310 Princes Street
Dunedin's only Scottish eatery complete with in-house whiskey bar, Bracken Restaurant's four, six and eight course degustation menus are something to behold. Homing in on flavour by using the best, seasonal local ingredients the visually stunning dishes are a revelation in taste. One for the spring bucket list.
95 Filluel Street
This French-inspired eatery is another of Dunedin's culinary heavy hitters, serving up an interesting and flavour packed menu of classics along with more contemporary fare. Matched with lovely decor and an impressive wine list, it's a great option for a leisurely mid-winter dinner.
121 Stuart Street
A revelation in taste, Moiety is an exciting addition to Dunedin’s funky Warehouse Precinct. The ever-changing menu enlists surprising ingredients and features enticing snack options or a more decadent five-course degustation-style option. It’s impossible to define a particular style of food here, but an undercurrent of Japanese flavours runs throughout the menu and everything is almost religiously based on locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients.
42 Queens Gardens
Fine dining in Dunedin doesn’t get any more centrally located than at this upstairs restaurant and wine bar in the Octagon. With extensive wine and whisky menus and knowledgeable staff, you can be assured of a happy sensory experience.
12 The Octagon, first floor
Set within the grand surroundings of the Distinction Dunedin Hotel, which enjoyed a previous life as the city’s Chief Post Office, four luxuriously appointed private dining vaults are now available for reservations. The historic Princes Street vaults are accessed through their original thick steel doors, but once inside a lavish secret hideaway is revealed. Seating between 2 and 12 guests per vault, they offer the ultimate personalised experience complete with individually controlled temperature and music. Bespoke menus can be created on request.
6 Liverpool Street
Indigo Room combines modern bistro cuisine and an astoundingly delicious cocktail, wine and whiskey list offset by a cosy bohemian space reminiscent of a Parisian artists den. The dynamic duo running the show come from a combined professional hospitality and international bartending background, which adds even more polish to this quirky alley-side hideaway. Slink in, sit down and settle in, it’s the kind of place you like to savour.
Rising from the ashes after a fire destroyed the restaurant at the end of last year, this much-lauded Dunedin eatery is serving its sophisticated bistro cuisine and goodies cooked over applewood in the Texan wood grill from the original Maori Hill venue once again, albeit with a new décor make-over.
7 Balmacewen Road
Carnivores rejoice, the well-established Prohibition Smokehouse has reinvented itself as an even more sophisticated den of all things delicious in its new and rather sumptuous Octagon location. Open for lunch and dinner, you can feast on a menu of smoky goodness or stop by for a cool drink in the sun.
10 The Octagon
Serving up inspired shared plates in the heart of Dunedin, the Vault 21 team believe the best way to enjoy their food is to share amongst your table. The only Dunedin restaurant boasting locusts as a menu item! Winners of the 'Best Venison Dish' at the Silver Fern Farms 2017 Master of Fine Cuisine awards.
21 The Octagon
Starfish offers contemporary New Zealand café cuisine celebrating local producers and suppliers and is continually developing exciting offerings for Dunedin’s legion of foodies. Found a few steps away from St Clair’s esplanade and beach, they keep their eye on presenting simple, real and beautiful meals, snacks and treats.
240 Forbury Road
One of the busiest foodie spots in Dunedin, Salt is a café by day, a bar and restaurant by night. There’s outdoor seating to soak up the seaside sunshine or cosy ﬁre-side dining on cooler nights. With an ethos centred around great food, friendly service and a fun environment Salt is the perfect place for a gathering of friends and family.
240 Forbury Road
This iconic franchise now has a home in Dunedin. Tucked down Frederick Street en route to the university campus, Joe’s exudes its legendary cool vibe behind a steampunk-esque shopfront. The bright, industrial-chic interior sets the scene for Joe’s signature grills and other tasty treats, but is equally awesome for drinks.
19 Frederick Street
Found in Dunedin’s bustling Roslyn village overlooking the harbour and city, Luna is a great spot for an evening drink or leisurely weekend meal with a view. The diverse menu features something to please almost every palate.
314 Highgate, Roslyn
Ombrellos Kitchen and Bar is Dunedin's premium craft beer restaurant. With up to 15 craft beers, a quirky restaurant and cosy private dining rooms, along with a stunning courtyard – Ombrellos is also perfect for summer lunches and after-work drinks. Live music in the courtyard on Friday nights.
10 Clarendon Street
A major refurbishment has turned this community hub into a sparkling, urbane range of options: dining with family and friends in the Mornington Kitchen and Bar; catching up with mates in the Sports Bar; or celebrating special occasions in the versatile Functions Room. With typically Dunedin humour, the owners have has kept its long-time slogan, ‘Maybe the best pub in the world’.
36 Mailer Street
The first of Speights’ ale houses, this is the ideal winter dining destination with its hearty meals and warm, woody interiors. Think southern fare classics like seafood chowder, blue cod, lamb shanks, steak and venison with a good array of vegetarian options as well. For beer aficionados this is the place to get your fix of special Speights brews, not available elsewhere in the country. All meals are expertly matched to one of our fine tap ales, plus a great range of other beverages.
200 Rattray Street
It’s all about stylish sociability here, with a sharing plates menu as long as that for mains, and a yummy range of kids options. The open, comfortable, semi-industrial décor offers an alfresco option, so passers-by can see you enjoying the famous Emerson’s beers and delicious fare.
70 Anzac Avenue
Craig Youngman and Kaz Ansell opened this new and busy restaurant in May 2019 to share their already successful love of good food. With their signature meals entitled, "beef two ways'' and "short shank redemption'' you know you’ll discover tasty plates of fresh fare while enjoying views from Macandrew Bay back towards Dunedin city. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner at the weekends, and for lunch and dinner Wednesday-Friday, this is a great spot to stop while on a trip around Otago Peninsula’s beautiful attractions.
494 Portobello Road
Pizza and pasta
With a staggering 24 pizza varieties and 13 pasta dishes, Zucchini Brothers is a one-stop-shop for delicious Italian carbohydrates and a huge local favourite. Dessert is equally astounding with all kinds of sweet goodness channelled into the menu. Too good to share!
286 Princes Street
A piece of Italy perched on the beachfront in St Clair. The restaurant serves Med-style breakfasts, wood-fired pizza, exceptional antipasti, pasta and small plates, complimented by a full-service bar.
Walk upstairs into an expansive, ornate Victorian dining room and enjoy this very popular Italian restaurant. It boasts a wide range of tasty pasta dishes and pizzas. You can complement your meal with delicious Italian-style breads, antipasto and salads. Top it off with Italy’s famous sweets: tiramisu, gelato and more.
The Savoy Building, 8a Moray Place
This gourmet pizza restaurant has long been a popular haunt in North Dunedin. New York-style innovation appears in the menu, which shows influences from the world over – just like the Big Apple.
3/5 North Road