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Neil Miller



While telling students where to drink can be a bit like telling the French how to surrender, there are at least three valid reasons to provide you with some insider information about the best beer places and facts around town:

You may be new to Wellington.
You may have just turned 18 and are preparing to enter your first bar ever.
Your current bar may be utter pants.

Here’s my tit bits:

For the budget conscious, the best value pitcher would have to be $15 for Mac’s Hoprocker at One Red Dog. That’s over four glasses of tasty beverage.
At the other end of the scale, the most expensive single bottle of beer in Wellington is $500 for Sam Adams Utopias (24%) at the new Malthouse. It’s also available by the glass for $25.
Easily the coolest beer glass is Pauwel Kwak at Leuven. It is shaped like a mini-yard glass and is served in a wooden holder.
Sally at Mighty Mighty has been voted barperson of the year in Wellington for the last two years.
I have heard more stories of appalling service at the Loaded Hog than all other Wellington bars put together.
The best courtyard is Coyote. It has high fences to keep the barbarians out.
My beer garden of choice would be Zebo’s. Enjoy it with a glass of Emerson’s and a one kilo bowl of chicken wings.
Pickwick’s Bar in the Beehive is exempt from the Sale of Liquor Act.
Dockside’s nickname is “The Drycleaners” because that is where women go to pick up suits.
If you like spinning wheels to get cheap drinks then Arizona and the Sports Café are your best bets.
A great three course meal is a Yebishu beer, a glass of sake and a plate of yakitori skewers from Kazu.
If fruit beer is your thing then Leuven has a cherry beer and the Speight’s Ale House has an apricot wheat beer on tap.
Join the Backbencher Party to get a good discount off tap beer.
The Hell Dogs at Syn are the best value bar snack but unfortunately the beer selection there can only aspire to be ordinary.
The most embarrassing bar food to order is “faggots” at Scorpios Bar. These meatballs are actually delicious with a Welsh Brains Skull Attack beer.
Mount Street Bar has the cheapest Tuatara in town.
The Thistle Inn has been beautifully re-done but tends to be shut whenever you are thirsty.
The Occidental has all you can eat mussels on Sunday.
St Johns and Hope Brothers are two of the few New Zealand bars to have Erdinger and Heineken on tap.
At the Mac’s Brewery Bar you can order a five-litre beer tower, a stein or a tasting tray.
Despite what the Cambridge Hotel staff say, Cambridge Draught is not made in the basement.
The shortest pub crawl is the Black Harp, Feathers and Leuven – the record is five laps.
The best place for plotting to overthrow President Geoff is the overstuffed armchairs downstairs at the Dog and Bone.
Sante Fe has its own lager (or so my expense account claims).