Best Restaurants in Queenstown

Known around the world for its beautiful mountains, lakes and nature walks, Queenstown also leads the way in its restaurant offerings to satisfy every palette.

From high-end fine dining through to cheap eats, Queenstown has it all. Food and drink selections have no limits with fresh produce located right on Queenstown’s doorstep. International cuisines are in every urban corner of the Wakatipu Basin.

Below are our top picks for the best places to eat when visiting Queenstown.

The view from Eichardts Queenstown looking out over Lake Wakatipu.
Image Credit – Culture Trip
  1. Botswana Butchery
  2. The Sherwood
  3. Walter Peak
  4. The World Bar
  5. Smith’s Craft Beer House
  6. Cowboys
  7. Skyline Queenstown
  8. Bespoke
  9. Lone Star
  10. Hikari
  11. Taco Medic
  12. Erik’s Fish and Chips
  13. Gourmet Food and Wine Tour
  14. Queenstown Beer Tour
  15. The Grille
  16. Pier
  17. 1876

Queenstown’s Best Waterfront Restaurants

When it comes to dining with a view, Queenstown has you covered. Listed below are three of the best waterfront dining experiences you will find in Queenstown let alone the world.

1. Botswana Butchery

The famous, quaint looking Archer’s cottage on Queenstown’s Waterfront makes it very hard to leave with stunning lake views coupled with one of the finest steak and seafood selections in the basin. Botswana Butchery, located at 17 Marine Parade, is a stone’s throw from the water and access to the beautiful Queenstown Gardens.

Dining in Winter is especially satisfying with the wood burner fire adding further comfort to an already incredible atmosphere as you look out to the beautiful lake and snowy mountains.

Botswana Butchery sits lit up by lights at dusk.
Image credit – The Queenstown Wedding Blog
2. The Sherwood

The Sherwood, located at 554 Frankton road, gives you a beautiful view across the Frankton arm directed at Kelvin Heights and the Remarkables. The restaurant is set up brilliantly with cosy pockets to dine in privately and take in some brilliant views.

Utilising produce from their own front yard as well as all over Central Otago, the Sherwood lead the way in sustainability. Their food offerings change with the seasons giving you the widest variety of produce available in the area.

Chefs working at Sherwood Queenstown.
Image credit – sherwoodqueenstown.nz
3. Walter Peak

You cannot visit Queenstown without taking the TSS Earnslaw over to the stunning Walter Peak Station. The buffet is world-famous and packaged with its brilliant sheep shearing show. The quality of the food and hugely popular sticky date pudding has locals consistently returning to get all they can eat.

The Earnslaw cruises across lake Wakatipu to Walter Peak.
Image credit – Real Journeys

Best Pubs and Bars in Queenstown

We all crave a nice refreshing beverage and classic burger from a pub whether it be on holiday or after a tough day working day. The below offerings lead the way when it comes to quality food, beverages, atmosphere and local pub feel.

1. The World Bar & Restaurant

This famous bar recreated itself after the devastating fire of 2013. Originally located on Shotover Street, The World Bar moved to Church Lane and is more successful than ever. Still known for its famous teapot, the bar has brilliant food that goes beyond your bar classics to the strange but very tasty chicken and waffles! Do not leave without visiting your local World Bar.

A wooden World Bar sign sits next to a plant in a barrel.
Image credit – Queenstown Holidays
2. Smith’s Craft Beer House

Visit Smith’s for your French-Canadian classic Poutine! It is very rare to find the Poutine dish done right with fries, gravy and the most important cheese curds.

Smith’s takes the cake as the perfect place to meet friends and relax with the craftiest of beers. There is never a time not to visit the chilled-out pub offering great service, great beers and great times.

Loaded fries served at Smiths in Queenstown.
Image credit – destinationlesstravel.com
3. Cowboys

A pub classic consistently serving beers by the litre! If you are looking for a vibrant pub then look no further than Cowboys. The entertainment offering is next to none with its famous mechanical bull accompanied by shuffle puck, pool, karaoke and screened entertainment.

A mechanical bull sits in front of a glowing Cowboys sign at Cowboys Queenstown.
Image credit - Tripadvisor

Queenstown Family Restaurants

1. Skyline Queenstown

Skyline has the capacity to offer a day full of fun with plenty of activities for the entire family. Skylines activities coupled with its food and beverage selection is unrivalled allowing for consistent family entertainment. Start with a coffee in the Market Kitchen before heading out to the Luge for some fast-paced fun. Take a break in between with lunch in the restaurant followed by a walk around Skyline’s Loop track.

The dining options are endless with breakfast, brunch and lunch served in the Market Kitchen café before the Skyline Buffet opens midday until late. A dining experience made all the better with the 220-degree panoramic views.

Skyline Queenstown's main building at the top of Bob's Peak at dusk.
Image credit – Skyline Queenstown
2. Bespoke

A famous, awarding-winning café that specialises in quality coffee, breakfast/brunch meals and sugar alternative treats.

Bespoke offers a family-friendly atmosphere in a superb location on the way to the Skyline Gondola and Luge.

Bespoke Kitchen Cafe coffee cup in front of a plant.
Image credit – Bespoke
3. Lone Star Café & Bar

Located at 14 Brecon Street, The Lone Star is a family favourite offering service just as excellent as its food. There is something for everyone with separate menus for children and special set menus if booking in a function or large group.

Lone Star is known for its Cowboy themed interior and entertaining staff that make you feel right at home. Be sure to keep Lone Star in the forefront of your mind when looking for a family-friendly restaurant in Queenstown.

The building of Lone Star Queenstown sits lit up at dusk.
Image credit – Lone Star

Cheap Eats in Queenstown

Generally speaking, we come to Queenstown knowing that a lot of the activities and offerings are quite expensive but this does not have to be the case when it comes to food. There are abundant food outlets which have created a lot of competition and resulted in some cheap hidden gems. The options below give you the best tastes in Queenstown and are as cheap as you will find.

1. Hikari

Located at 5 Beach Street, Hikari offers delicious contemporary Japanese cuisine and is highly recommended by foodies in Queenstown. The food is super affordable, tasty and you can even purchase their fresh sushi by the piece so you can get as much (or as little) as you want!

An image of Hikari sushi bar packed with happy customers in Queenstown.
Image credit – Hikari

2. Taco Medic

An absolute must in Queenstown offering up the best taco’s and at the cheapest of prices. The Taco Medic team are based at 3 Searle Lane and just recently opened a second business in Queenstown Central.

Look no further than Taco medic to nourish the palette when on the go in Queenstown with its tasty and affordable food.

A person adds hot sauce to a delicious spread of fresh made tacos from Taco Medic.
Image credit – Taco Medic

3. Erik’s Fish & Chips

Queenstown’s Fish and Chip shop is Queenstown’s answer to the kiwi classic. If you are looking to enjoy fish and chips in a chilled atmosphere near the waterfront then you have found your solution. Be sure to try the famous blue cod and handcrafted kumara wedges.

A mouth watering meal of fish and chips displayed in front of Lake Wakatipu.
Image credit - Erik's Fish & Chips

Queenstown Food Tours

The Queenstown food and wine tours sit at the higher end of the price scale but allow you a little taste of all the best in the basin while providing brilliant views and commentary of Queenstown’s rich history.

1. Gourmet Food and Wine Tour from Queenstown

Known more for its wine tasting, the Gourmet Wine and Food Tour is a six-hour private tour for small groups to give the most personalised of experiences. Commentary on Central Otago’s history is weaved in amongst the tastings as the bus makes its way through the Gibbston Valley towards Cromwell.

A platter of food and wine is served on a wooden dish.
Image credit – Viator
2. Queenstown Beer Tours

A must-do in Queenstown for beer lovers. Altitude Brewing is the start point for this well-rounded tour located in the developing Sugar Lane. The guide tells a great narrative of how the establishment came to be as well as clear and concise descriptions of the 12 beer offerings. Be sure to try the famous Sled Dog before departing.

The tour pushes onto Arrowtown for some free time to take in the surroundings before heading to Gantley’s in Arthurs point. A four-course lunch is served with each course accompanied by the most appropriate beer.

The tour concludes at the Canyon Brewery with a tour of the beer-making process before tasting five beers of your choice. By this point, each guest has figured out whether to opt for a light lager or dabble in the darkest of Stout beers.

A selection of eight beers are served on two wooden paddles.
Image credit – QueenstownNZ

More Great Places to Eat Near Queenstown

1. The Grille

With an unrivalled waterfront location, The Grille by Eichardt’s offers high-quality dining in the heart of Queenstown. Locals and tourists alike are welcomed into the New York Bistro themed interior. Breath-taking lake views await so do not hesitate to book in and experience fine dining with a view.

Lake street Queenstown with the Louis Vuitton and Eichardts bulidings.
Image credit – Scope Media
2. Pier

Located on the Steamer Wharf, Pier is elevated with superb views of the Waterfront and the Remarkables. The famous TSS Earnslaw docks are adjacent to Pier which only improves the awe-inspiring landscape.
Pier has a wide selection of NZ wines and mixes contemporary food flavours with your classic dishes.

Pier 19 in Queenstown has an outdoor area sheltered by large umbrellas.
Image credit – TripAdvisor
3. 1876

Known as the first bar of the night to attend with very affordable food and beverages 1876 is the perfect rendezvous point. 1876 has a brilliant make-shift garden bar and deck located right off Ballarat Street.

1876 menus lie on a table next to a plate of food and a pint of beer.
Image credit – QueenstownNZ

Get Excited about your trip to Queenstown

Looking for more things to do in Queenstown? Claim your free Queenstown travel guide now! We’ll send you local tips on what to do and see and what tours to take while you’re in the Queenstown and Otago region. We even have a list of the best things to do in Queenstown when the sun goes down. Browse for more incredible Queenstown, New Zealand holiday ideas on our Skyline blog. We’ll see you soon!

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