Monday, December 22, 2008

#569 ... Medicinal Drinks

Enjoying the summer weather at St John's Bar ... St Johns Heineken Hotel at 5 Cable Street in Wellingtons CBD is a fantastic new bar and restaurant in a waterfront location near Te Papa.

St Johns has an outstanding history as the ambulance building in the 1930's, a great music venue in the late 80's and 90's and now a modern, comfortable and stylish fitout make this art deco architectural masterpiece the place to visit while in town. .

The NZSE (with more red than green on the rolling share sign) is just to the right and above and the Boatshed is to the left. The Harbour sneaking thru in the left background

REVIEW
Going Up, Going Down - Sunday Magazine
"St Johns Heineken Hotel, Wellington. Stylish drinking and dining this summer by the lagoon"
Beer: The rebirth of cool - Neil Miller - Realbeer.co.nz - November 18 2006
".........creating a modern, stylish waterfront bar and restaurant while retaining the 1930s charm of the building. The interior calls to mind the kind of international hotel where you might have seen James Cagney or Humphrey Bogart nursing a double scotch. The attention to detail is phenomenal. I particularly love the swooping art deco island bar. Even the lights are cool and I don’t say that about many places. Dark leather and solid wood predominate through the various areas – the lobby, the bar, the restaurant, the lounge and the sun room. This venue is classy and versatile – I enjoyed a leisurely Saturday brunch with friends there every bit as much as watching the rugby there the night before with my mates. The food on offer ranges from pub favorites (try the calamari) to full-on restaurant dishes. The menu includes the pheasant and venison dish which won the Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge last year. I have my eye on the Spatchcock with Five Spice for next time. Of course, this is a beer column and all the ambiance and Game Terrine in the world will come to naught if the beer selection is sub-standard. Fortunately, there are several interesting brews here. The absolute highlight for me is the Erdinger on tap. The St John Heineken Hotel is one of the first bars in the country to get this classic German drop. Carefully transported and stored, Erdinger is a slightly cloudy wheat beer – fruity, spritzy, slightly tart and completely refreshing. The best seller is unsurprisingly draught Heineken. Sipping at a tall glass of this famous brew as the sun streamed through the round windows reminded me how good this beer can be – crisp, floral, dry with a soft bitter finish. Tiger beer also makes a rare appearance on tap...... The beers are all served in beautiful branded glasses on a matching coaster. This is a great little touch which I find adds so much to the overall drinking experience. They take their beer seriously here. That’s just one of the many reasons to visit."