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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 ourSkyline blog. We’ll see you soon!