103 Customs Street West
First timer friendly: Yes
But was it a pub? Yes
On my first day in Auckland, I was really looking forward to finding a good pub and getting a bit closer to a “real” type of pub. While New Zealand certainly isn’t England/Ireland, its a lot closer to the US. After a 12 hour flight and heading out right after landing for a 12 mile walk, 2 mile paddle, and a bit of relaxation, I could not wait for my first pint and some good food.
Maybe I put an unfair amount of hope on this place, but it was unfortunately a major let down. The price of the flood was inflated because the restaurant is in the (admittedly very nice) Viaduct area in Auckland. Great views, cool ships, and a nice off-shore breeze. The beer was decent (started with a Boddingtons, then had a good Pale Ale from a local brewery) but the food just wasn’t anything to write home about, especially for the price. Of all the things that bothered me, though, the worst was by far the atmosphere. It reminded me precisely of the pubs in the US that just try to darn hard. “Old” stuff strategically placed on shelves, vintage golf clubs hanging on the wall, a catchy name starting with an “O”, etc. Not a horrible place, but a definite let down.