My Life in Motion

Archive for the month “May, 2014”

Guide to Christchurch

The more you travel, the more people you meet. The more people you meet, the more you learn about different people’s home towns. I’m always intrigued by the opinion of those people that have been to Christchurch, and I can’t help but get a little bit defensive when people don’t like it. Usually, when I press them on it, they skipped round the damaged city centre and then left again. They didn’t find out enough about what the city is all about, and where are the best places to go. If my previous posts don’t give enough information on where to go and what to see, I enjoy giving recommendations on where to eat and drink in the city. The following are very much my own personal recommendations, and I encourage others to give their own favourites. I’m still discovering new places to go, and regularly there’s an opening or a re-opening going on somewhere in the city, so I’m always eager to find new gems. Discovering all the gastric delights of this city is a work in progress.

Edit: Updated Jan 2019.

CAFES (Map View):

C1 Espresso185 High Street, Central.

GO FOR: location; atmosphere; the biggest range of teas I’ve ever seen; food flying through pneumatic tubes; the best ice coffee in town


Vic’s Cafe132 Victoria Street, Central.

GO FOR: freshly baked bread for sale

Cafe Procope, 165 Victoria Street, Central.

GO FOR: cheerful staff; amazing food

Beat Street Cafe324 Barbadoes Street, Central.

GO FOR: quirkiness; great food

WHEN NOT TO GO: Sunday brunch/lunch when the queue for cooked food on a busy day is >1hr

Black Betty165 Madras Street, Central.

GO FOR: location; atmosphere; Shakshuka

WHEN NOT TO GO: Sunday brunch/lunch when the queue for cooked food on a busy day is about 1hr

Coffee CultureVarious: Addington, Beckenham, Bush Inn, Airport, Durham Street, Kaiapoi, Lincoln, Lyttelton, Merivale, The Palms, Rangiora, Redwood, Riccarton, Rolleston, Sumner – although a chain, I love these coffee shops

GO FOR: great coffee and consistency across the various branches; join their loyalty card for 20% off hot drinks


Salt on the Pier195-213 Marine Parade, New Brighton.

GO FOR: yummy food within reach of the beach

Ocean Cafe & BarEsplanade Clock Tower, Sumner.

GO FOR: great coffee by the beach

Red Rock CafeGondola Summit Station, Mount Pleasant.

GO FOR: delicious food and coffee overlooking the city and Lyttleton harbour; red velvet cake


Coffee Lovers25 New Regent Street, Central.

GO FOR: location; the best hot chocolate in the city

Oddfellows Cafe, 5 Disraeli Street, Addington.

GO FOR: great menu; fantastic coffee and it is attached to a local coffee roasters

WHEN NOT TO GO: on a Sunday when it is closed

Underground Cafe, 359 Colombo Street, Sydenham.

GO FOR: Fantastic selection of very tasty food

Antigua Boat Shed Cafe, 2 Cambridge Terrace, Central.

GO FOR: fantastic location next to the Avon River and near the Botanical Gardens; friendly, smiling & helpful staff

Hello Sunday Cafe, 6 Elgin Street, Sydenham.

GO FOR: the choice of indoor or outdoor dining, healthy food choices


Pure Cafe Co., 31 Birmingham Drive, Middleton

GO FOR: pure and healthy (but still very tasty) food and drinks with gluten and paleo options

Coffee Therapy, 77 Hereford Street, Central

GO FOR: Central location, and next to a tram stop; great spot for people watching; tasty food

Addington Coffee Co-op, 297 Lincoln Road, Addington

GO FOR: tasty food; on-site roastery; great location

WHEN NOT TO GO: they are always closed on public holidays

Luciano Expresso Bar, 76 Moorhouse Avenue, Central

GO FOR: chocolate drinks made with real liquid chocolate; award-winning barista

Allpress Espresso, 110 Montreal Street, Sydenham

GO FOR: handy little cafe in the south side

WHEN NOT TO GO: at the weekend when it is closed

Black & White Coffee Cartel, Various: 83 Victoria Street, Central; Winston Avenue, Papanui; Litchfield Street, Central; Plymouth Lane, Central; Oxford Terrace, Central; High Street, Central; Bush Inn, Riccarton; 71 The Crossing, Central

GO FOR: tasty food options & great coffee


Lemon Tree Cafe, 234 St Asaph St, Central

GO FOR: scrumptious food, lovely coffee and a curiously mishmash but strangely interesting decor style

Laneway Espresso, 329 Durham Street North, Central

GO FOR: great food, great coffee, and a view across to the Commons

WHEN NOT TO GO: at the weekend when they are closed

Ris’tretto Cafe, 670 Barbadoes Street, St Albans

GO FOR: Indoor/outdoor seating, own-blend coffee


Dose Diner, 295 Blenheim Road, Upper Riccarton

GO FOR: delicious menu options, great food, decor by Jacob ‘Yikes’ Ryan

The Stolen Bagel, 263 Lincoln Road, Addington

GO FOR: range of sweet and savoury bagel fillings with smoothies, coffees and sweet treats to complement

Emperor’s New Clothes, 95B Dyer’s Pass Road, Cashmere

GO FOR: quaint little cafe with good food and coffee, al fresco option, and a neighbourhood cat that likes to drop by

Lyttelton Coffee Company, 29 London Street, Lyttelton

GO FOR: delicious food options, great coffee, DJ playing music

Little Merchants, 18 Bernard Street, Addington

GO FOR: the best toast options in the city

Mrs Hucks, 12 Show Place, Addington

GO FOR: Business lunches, small functions, tasty food

Gentle Giant, 158 Ferry Road, Waltham

GO FOR: Good selection of food for breakfast and lunch

Vivace Espresso, 474 Tuam Street, Phillipstown

GO FOR: flavoursome coffee and delicious food, on-site coffee bean sales by the bag

Supreme Supreme, 10 Welles Street, Central

GO FOR: Great coffee, great food, great service

Town Tonic, 335 Lincoln Road, Addington

GO FOR: Cafe by day, restaurant and bar by night, this place serves delicious food around the clock

The Cup, 127 Hackthorne Road, Cashmere

GO FOR: Great coffee and food with an equally great view overlooking Christchurch

The Naked Baker, 142 Beach Road, North New Brighton

GO FOR: Good food, coffee and bakery within walking distance of the beach

Mediterranean Food Company, 322 Tuam Street, Central

GO FOR: Mediterranean food store selling European foods and wine; on-site cafe serving delicious food showcasing the produce on sale

C4 Coffee, 278 Tuam Street, Central

GO FOR: On-site roastery; brewing and coffee equipment for sale; cafe selling their own brand coffee

Unknown Chapter, 254 St Asaph Street, Central

GO FOR: industrial chic decor with plants hanging from the roof; tasty cabinet food with good coffee


Table at Monks, 282 Madras Street, Central

GO FOR: location near the popular Margaret Mahy playground; delicious food and coffee

Bunsen, 2 Worcester Boulevard, Central

GO FOR: a bit of Christchurch history – the name may have changed but this is a pre-Earthquake gem in the Arts Centre; delicious food and coffee

ten27, 1027 Ferry Road, Ferrymead

GO FOR: A handy coffee stop on route to the eastern suburbs, as well as right next door to a furniture shop

Castle Rock Cafe, 21 Mary Muller Drive, Hillsborough

GO FOR: coffee, food and drinks if you’re working in the area – hidden amongst an industrial area you wouldn’t know it was there

Kadett, 371 St Asaph Street, Central

GO FOR: An absolute gem of a cafe just a little away from the central hub of the city

Uncommon, 262 Tuam Street, Central

GO FOR: Good menu and cabinet food; good coffee; unique bottled juice options

Curious Palate, 287 Durham Street North, Central

GO FOR: Delicious food across the river

WHEN NOT TO GO: At the weekend when it’s closed

Grain Coffee & Eatery, 19 Southwark Street, Central

GO FOR: Delicious food and coffee in a small industrial-chic space within an office block

West End Stories, 93 Cambridge Terrace, Central

GO FOR: Yummy food across the river

Apartment Coffee, 77 Tuam Street, Central

GO FOR: Kiwi-Asian fusion food

Coffee Embassy Espresso, 107 Fitzgerald Avenue, Central

GO FOR: Coffee and lunch at the east end of the central city

Theobroma, Riccarton Mall, Riccarton

GO FOR: All your chocolate desires


Miro, 176 Oxford Terrace, Central

GO FOR: Business brunch or posh nosh


Fava Cafe, 236 Centaurus Road, St Martins

GO FOR: A post-Port Hills walk/bike ride stop-off for coffee/brunch



Tutto Bene192 Papanui Road, Merivale.

GO FOR: Italian restaurant run by Italians, and the owner is always full of smiles; the best Italian in town

WHEN NOT TO GO: if you haven’t booked a table in advance – it books out!

Strawberry Fare19 Bealey Avenue, Central.

GO FOR: divine and delicious foods and a huge dessert menu

WHEN NOT TO GO: if you haven’t booked a table – it’s very popular; or if you’re looking for a cheap eat as it’s far from the cheapest place in town


Pomeroy’s Old Brewery Inn, 292 Kilmore Street, Central.

GO FOR: delicious food (my favourite is the pulled pork) in a cozy, welcoming pub-style restaurant; extensive and changing range of craft beers

WHEN NOT TO GO: on a Monday when it’s closed!

Himalayas, 830a Colombo Street, Central.

GO FOR: delicious and extensive range of Indian fare

Spagalimis, Various: 32 Salisbury Street, Central; Church Corner, Riccarton; New Brighton

GO FOR: a wide selection of pizzas which are also available to takeaway

Speight’s Alehouse Ferrymead, 2a Waterman Place, Woolston.

GO FOR: sharing platters; pub grub

Curator’s House, 7 Rolleston Avenue, Central.

GO FOR: location – snuggled at the corner of the Botanical Gardens next to the Avon river; private dining rooms available for bookings and functions

Passengers & Co, 92 Russley Road, Russley.

GO FOR: delicious food and coffee, friendly staff

Venuti, 791 Colombo Street, Central.

GO FOR: scrumptious Italian fare; friendly & helpful staff

WHEN NOT TO GO: on Sundays when it is closed

Tramway Restaurant, Cathedral Junction, Central.

GO FOR: a unique experience of dining on a tram as it trundles through the city; scrumptious food; eating with a view

Madame Kwong’s, 155 Blenheim Road, Riccarton.

GO FOR: huge range of Chinese food to suit all tastes

Mama Hooch, 817 Colombo Street, Central.

GO FOR: the ‘dirty’ burger is the best cajun chicken burger outside of Fergburger

WHEN NOT TO GO: closed on Sundays

City Social, 151 Cambridge Terrace, Central

GO FOR: Delicious pizza, and large selection of bagels – perfect for lunch or dinner

Mumbaiwala, 120 Hereford Street, Central

GO FOR: Street food style Indian food – a delicious alternative to the staple curry house

Pot Sticker Dumpling Bar, 144 Lichfield Street (Poplar Lane), Central

GO FOR: Awesome dumplings and Asian inspired food within the popular Poplar Lane eateries

Buddha Stix, 74 Riccarton Road, Riccarton

GO FOR: Delicious and generous servings of Asian fusion food

The Bicycle Thief, 136 Old Tai Tapu Road, Kennedy’s Bush

GO FOR: Lovely setting just outside the city, extensive home-style pizza menu

Madam Woo, 255 St Asaph Street, Central

GO FOR: One of many delicious food options in this area; Malaysian dining

The Brickworks, 69 Centaurus Road, Cashmere

GO FOR: Delicious pub-style food; great dining option away from the city

Little High Eatery, 181 High Street, Central

GO FOR: A breath of fresh air on the Christchurch food scene: multiple food options under one roof – pizza, dumplings, grill, burgers, thai, sushi and Caribbean; a great brunch, lunch or dinner spot

WHEN NOT TO GO: If you are claustrophobic – it can get very cramped at busy times; If you are in a rush – at peak times the queues are long and the wait for food is equally so.

EntX, Colombo Street, Central

GO FOR: Food court style eating in the central city, downstairs from the Hoyts Cinema



Pomeroy’s Old Brewery Inn, 292 Kilmore Street, Central.

GO FOR: an extensive, and ever-changing, range of craft beers

Curator’s House, 7 Rolleston Avenue, Central.

GO FOR: a few drinks in the beautiful Hagley Park

WHEN NOT TO GO: when the wasps are out!

No. 4 Bar & Restaurant, 4 Mansfield Avenue, Merivale.

GO FOR: a great location for a few drinks after work

WHEN NOT TO GO: it can get quite packed on Friday nights once the offices have shut

Protocol, 2 Colombo Street, Cashmere.

GO FOR: great place for holding functions; a nice place to go that’s away from the CBD

The Bog Irish Bar, 50 Victoria Street, Central.

GO FOR: All your Irish desires – Irish staff, Irish music, Irish-style fare, Guinness; scrumptious bar snack menu; live music venue; the decor is fantastic

Sugarhorse Bar & Eatery, 100 Moorhouse Avenue, Addington.

GO FOR: After work drinks and food, large drinks selection

Valley Inn Tavern, 2 Flavell Street, Heathcote Valley.

GO FOR: Compact but welcoming bar away from the CBD. Also do pub food

The Cuban, 236 St. Asaph Street, Central

GO FOR: Cuban-inspired drinking venue with plenty of drink choices and plenty of space. Food also served.

Dux Central (Dux Brew Bar, The Emerald Room, The Upper Dux, The Courtyard, The Poplar Social Club), 10 Poplar Street, Central

GO FOR: Options! With 5 zones to chose from, each with a slightly different vibe, there is plenty of choice depending on your mood. An impressive drinks menu is available. Food Available. Indoor & outdoor seating options.


The Twisted Hop Pub, 616A Ferry Road, Woolston

GO FOR: Craft beer and pub food. Live music on some nights and drinking events throughout the year

The Brickworks, 69 Centaurus Road, Cashmere

GO FOR: Great drinking option away from the city. Large screens for sports



Himalayas, 830a Colombo Street, Central.

Food: Indian

Order in the restaurant, online or over the phone, but be aware that online orders are slower to process

Spagalimis, Various: Riccarton, New Brighton, Central.

Food: Pizza

Beats the likes of Pizza Hut and Hell’s hands down, but it comes at a price

Dimitris Greek Food, Cashel Street Re:Start Mall, Central; 86 Riccarton Road, Riccarton

Food: Greek souvlaki

The best, and one of the most popular, souvlakis in the city. Sold out of a food truck in the Re:Start mall there is always a queue, so be prepared to wait

Burger Wisconsin, Various: Cashmere, Papanui.

Food: Burgers

It’s no Fergburger, but although I know some people that would disagree with me, this is my favourite burger joint in the city

Fritz’s Wieners, Check website for locations

Food: Wieners

Quick and tasty sausage fare. They often have a mobile unit at lots of events.

Muffin Break, Various: Spitfire Square, Airport; Northlands Mall, Papanui; The Palms, Shirley; Hornby; The Landing, Wigram; Bush Inn, Riccarton; Westfield Mall, Riccarton; Bus Interchange, Central; South City Mall, Central; Eastgate Mall, Linwood; Barrington Mall, Spreydon

Food: Muffins, Toasties, Hot & Cold drinks

A chain of food-court style coffee shops, the coffee is good, and if you sign up to their loyalty card, every 5th one is free

Mrs Higgin’s Cookies, 10 New Regent Street, Central.

Food: Fresh baked cookies

Very more-ish and yummy cookies baked fresh

The Sausage Sisters, Unit 5, 456 Colombo Street, Sydenham.

Food: sausage rolls

Listed as a courtyard cafe, it’s little more than a kiosk with a table and chairs outside but the sausage rolls are delicious, especially the moroccan lamb. Only open till lunchtime.

New York Deli, Various: Addington, BNZ Centre & Bush Inn.

Food: New York Deli-style sandwiches

Made to order sandwiches. Choose the bread, the meat filling and the salad, and enjoy. Not as cheap as Subway but worth the extra dollars.

Friday Food Trucks, Cathedral Square, Central. Fridays from 11am – 9pm

Food: Various

During summer months on Friday evenings, Cathedral Square becomes an open air eatery with various offerings from local food trucks. From Nepalese to American, Hungarian to Mexican with some regulars and some changing faces, there is plenty of choice.

Pot Sticker Dumplings, 363 Colombo Street (Colombo Mall), Sydenham

Food: Dumplings

Changing fillings of delicious dumplings made authentically. You can watch your dumplings being steamed whilst you wait.

Base Woodfired Pizza, 181 High Street (Little High), Central

Food: Pizza

Handy central location for some delicious pizza and some incredible milkshakes. Often found at events too. There’s a bit of a wait for food, but it’s always worth it.

Sal’s Pizzeria, 146 Lichfield Street, Central; The Terrace, Central; 111 Riccarton Road, Riccarton

Food: American-style pizza

Order by the slice or go big and order one of their massive sharing pizzas. Slice flavours vary by the day, and meal deals are available. Probably one of the best pizza joints in the city. Dine in or takeaway.


MARKETS (Map View):

Riccarton Market, Riccarton Racecourse. Sundays 9am – 2pm

Stalls: fresh produce, bric-a-brac, private sellers, crafts, and a myriad of food carts

The market is on every week of the year regardless of the weather. As an ex-pat Scot, this is my go-to place to get some much loved British foods

Christchurch Farmers Market, Riccarton House (16 Kahu Road), Riccarton. Saturdays 9am – 1pm

Stalls: fresh produce and ready-to-eat produce

A great place to visit for foodies


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