A few months ago, when we first heard that a slick new local watering hole by the name of Annabel’s would be gracing Ponsonby Three Lamps, we were intrigued. The area has long been underrated according to the two childhood friends, hospitality maestro Henry Temple and NZ Rosé Co. founder Oliver Scutts, whose venture it is. Combining their industry experience to establish an ultra-personable new Ponsonby bar, the result is one that has already won hearts over the few days that her inviting blue door has been open.
Elegant and casual in the same breath, Annabel’s is best described as a modest local hangout — “It’s a place to go on the way to where you’re going” the pair have explained — though that doesn’t mean that encounters will be brief. Inside, the creative prowess of interior architect Rufus Knight has come ambiently come to life with assistance from interior designer Camilla Temple and renowned New Zealand painter Andrew Barber whose artful touch has materialised on the intentionally antique-looking walls. Furnished simply with a peacock-blue booth that runs length of the space, intimate tables provide a perfect platform over which to have a good tête-à-tête.
The osteria-esque address offers a selection of well-priced, international and local wines by the glass, Ruinart Champagne, Estrella on tap, and a succinct cocktail list from which you can choose one of three drinks: an Aperol Spritz, a Negroni, or a delicious Spritz Blanco. With a simple selection of tapas, cheese boards and jamón Ibérico, we peg Annabel’s as being the new go-to spot for a late night tipple or after-work drink.
Annabel's Wine Bar
277 Ponsonby Road