From breakfast and lunch to dinner and a nightcap — why Viaduct Harbour is the best place to dine anytime this weekend

While summer may be behind us, there’s still a whole lot happening in the city — particularly when it comes to Auckland’s vibrant hospitality scene. This weekend, why not make for Viaduct Harbour, where, despite what time you visit, there’s something exceptional on offer for every taste and proclivity.

Breakfast

Globally acclaimed chef Peter Gordon’s restaurant (and food embassy), Homeland, is known for turning out some of the City’s most deliciously fresh, local fare, and their breakfast offering is the perfect time to sample exactly that. In the morning, you’ll find Pacifica-influenced dishes, such as the vanilla & orange coconut sago topped with fresh kiwi, on offer in amongst inventive dishes that showcase the best of NZ produce. The Turkish eggs with whipped garlic yogurt, Aleppo chilli butter and Dusty Apron sourdough, and the creamed Chatham Islands Pāua on toasted ciabatta both hero local ingredients, and also happen to be two of the tastiest dishes on the menu. The coffee is great, too. Homeland is open from 9am, and we suggest heading down early and nab one of the coveted front tables looking over the sparkling Waitematā Harbour before the crowds descend.


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Lunch

Adding to an already extensive list of reason’s to visit, Soul recently added a handful of new dishes to its menu that have become instant hits, and are well worth a trip to the Viaduct stalwart to sample. The crayfish crumpet is a must, served alongside tart grapefruit and mint & pea tendrils, topped with miso butter and bisque, while the Tokyo turnip cakes with beef tartare and oscietra caviar are a tasty starter to share. Come for the food, stay for the extensive drinks list (the 90s-inspired French martini with vanilla vodka, raspberry, pineapple, grand marnier and egg whites is the perfect lunch companion), unmatched views, and always lively vibe. Soul never misses.

Aperitivio

It didn’t take Bivacco long to solidify itself as the place to be for after-work drinks and leisurely weekend lunches alike, with its exceptional fare, extensive list of libations and consistently good vibes to match, and the addition of their ‘Sundown Sessions’ made it the place to be for an afternoon snack and tipple, too. Between 4—6pm on Fridays and Saturdays, until the end of March, here you’ll find a slew of drinks specials and delicious morsels, perfect for a pre-dinner stop off. Rumour has it that Bluff oysters have just hit the menu too.

Dinner

Another gem in Viaduct Harbour’s glistening gastronomic crown, Hello Beasty draws inspiration from Korean, Japanese and Chinese cuisine, and as such, offers flavourful fare that promises to expand your culinary horizons. Dinner is the perfect time to visit, ideally with a hearty appetite, so to sample as many dishes as possible — as choosing just a few is near-impossible. The barbecued sweetcorn with Korean chilli butter is a perfect snack to start on while mulling over the extensive menu, followed closely by a selection of cold cuts (the sashimi selection is stunning), scallop, pork and shrimp potstickers, miso braised brisket bao, and (of course) the katsu sando, which is Hello Beasty’s calling card and an absolute must-try. From there, grab some fried chicken and soft shell crab before moving on to some bigger plates and hibachi. The drinks are sublime too — we recommend the impossibly fresh Umeshu Spritz.

Nightcap

And, finally, when it comes to a nightcap there’s only one place for it: Rooftop at QT Auckland. With a panoramic view across Viaduct Harbour and its consistently lively vibe, the Rooftop at QT Auckland has fast become a popular haunt for a post-dinner drink, and for good reason. Rooftop’s extensive cocktail menu is one of the most inventive in town, with a number of drinks we find it hard to top — the Burnt-Butter Old Fashioned is a tasty take on a classic, while the Shiraz Sling (available on tap, no less) is a quenching mix of Four Pillars gin, yuzu, pineapple, lemon and pomegranate, and, if its sweet satiation that you seek, look no further than the utterly divine Apple of my Eye, which pairs Christian Drouin Le Gin with lychee liqueur, stone fruit liqueur, clarified cucumber and americano aperitivo to exceptional results. Cin cin.

Gastronomy

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