The last few years have seen a quiet boom in craft beer bars in Auckland.
Once truly Wellington's domain (and, alright, I admit still is), craft beer is now as readily available as flat whites in the big little city.
Not a project to be undertaken in just a day, the list below includes some of the best spots to enjoy a quality beer or two in the 09.
Having done our fair share of research on this one, below are the 15 best places to drink beer in Auckland. Consider it your summer to-do list.
The Beer Spot - Northcote
Forty beer taps on the wall and a rotating calendar of food trucks with some of the best cheap eats in Auckland (White Lady and a beer, anyone?), this is definitely worth crossing the bridge for.
Hallertau - Riverhead
Once-quiet Hallertau, tucked away by the forest, west of the city noise, the area is now a popular hotspot for anyone venturing slighty out of town. The biergarten is particularly enjoyable on a sunny day - and bonus points for being a welcoming space for the kids, while mum and dad enjoy a drink in peace.
Brothers Juke Joint - Mt Eden
Brothers Beer are somewhat pioneers of craft beer in Auckland, first with their central location in CityWorks, before expanding further into the 'burbs. Their Mt Eden venue has quickly become a favourite for the locals, combining craft beer and deliciously slow-cooked BBQ food, on a nice open space, in an old leatherworking factory on a quiet street.
Go for the beer, stay for the pulled pork and tater tots.
Brewers Co Op - Victoria St
I dare you to find a better combo than craft beer and fish and chips. Go on, I'll wait. In fact, I'll wait right here, at Brewers Co Op, with a cold pint and the catch of the day.
Brew on Quay - Quay St
Brew on Quay is an Auckland institution. If you've never had a beer or two at Brew before heading in (late and slightly happy) for a gig at the Spark Arena, you haven't lived. And if you're really doing it right, you get back in there after the gig. With some luck, there'll be live music playing and a decent selection in the fridge.
16 Tun - Jellicoe St
Walking around Wynyard Quarter is thirsty work. Pop into 16 Tun for a decent selection of beer and "beer from grapes".
Vultures Lane - Vulcan Lane
Tucked away in Vulcan Lane, away from the hustle and bustle of Queen Street, you'll find Vultures Lane. Some days you can barely move in there because the place is so packed, other times you've got it all to yourself. The one thing that is consistent: the quality of the beer on tap.
Good George Craft House - Mission Bay
One of the newcomers into the Auckland craft beer scene, Good George is here to make Mission Bay cooler (and hoppier). This new hotspot on Tamaki Drive deserves a visit, after your swim of course.
Beer Jerk Bunker - Symonds St
The Beer Jerk Bunker is the physical extension of its online version, Beer Jerk, the craft beer subscription box that's been making Kiwi fridges happier for ages now. The new bunker is exactly that: an underground bar on Symonds St. It doesn't fit many people and that cosiness is one of its best features. The other good feature is its unbeatable beer selection, with a menu full of beers you won't find anywhere else in Auckland. If you're after something really special, this is the place.
Galbraith's Alehouse - Eden Terrace
Another Auckland institution you can't miss. Galbraith's is that one place in Auckland that can almost replicate the typical English pub feeling you can only get in England. It's such a pub, you wouldn't even mind if the beer was rubbish. But it's not. Instead, it's really good.
Garage Project - Kingsland
Nothing cemented Auckland's place as New Zealand's second craft beer capital like Garage Project opening its cellar door in Kingsland. You can't do more than tasting paddles there but you they do takeaways if the paddles have left you wanting more (fair warning: they will).
Urbanaut - Morningside
Urbanaut is the cool kid on the block and the block is Kingsland's New North Rd. The brewery is open every day for tastings and takeaways. Grab a seat on the comfortable sofas and enjoy a sample of the Urbanaut range, straight from the source. It's the most hipster thing in Kingsland since, well, everything else in Kingsland.
Flight 605 - Morningside
For the "neighbourhood bar feel", go no further than Flight 605. Whether you're from Morningside or not (and not many of us are), you'll get treated like a local.
The Lumsden Freehouse - Newmarket
This wins "Best Spot to Drink while Watching and Judging Other People As They Pass You By", a category I've just made up. Grab a beer and sit down watching as people drag shopping bags full of stuff they don't need (not beer) around Newmarket.
Deep Creek Brews and Eats - Browns Bay
You'll have to venture a little further north for this one but you will not regret it. Deep Creek Brews and Eats, in Browns Bay, is the perfect spot on the sunny shore to relax after a swim or a walk. Grab a crafty one - brewed not far off, in Silverdale - and take a seat in the beer garden for the afternoon. The "Eats" part of the place is well above your average pub menu as well.