Victoria Park Quarter,
37 Drake Street,
(09) 929 2790
Nestled above Victoria Park Market, Libertine is a new bar and eatery taking its cue from the Americas, but with an Antipodean twist.
A play on a term used to describe a person devoid of moral restraints and who values physical pleasures, the Libertine offers what it describes as “sinfully good, free-thinking food and drink” in inspired surroundings.
From the huge tree that sits centre place in the bar, to the private dining area and eclectic music and DJs, this freethinking philosophy means doing things a bit differently and in a less structured way.
Avg Food Spend
$$$ per person
Bar Menu, A La Carte Menu
One of Auckland's Best Roof Top Terraces
I don't know what others experienced there, but we absolutely loved the service there! The waitress was super sweet and attentive, gave suggestions when asked and even had a giggle when my husband was gobbling on her suggestions and loving it ;)
We had a four course dinner there and everything turned up relatively quickly (given they had a party on the other side) and it tasted just perfect. Being a South American myself I can say they did a good job on their food. I've been here for more than a decade and I reminisced the taste of home - will definitely go back and try some other things.
(To the chef, they should keep their corn with feta and whatever magig stuff you put in there!)
Tasty tapas - ordered Pull pork tacos, cumin battered fish tacos, jerk chicken bites and charred lamb ribs (all small plates). Pulled pork tacos were the highlight. Jerk chicken bites were also very nice. Very nice food. Meat was cooked so well that it fell off the bone.
Disappointed as waitress took an age to take our order - she came to take our drinks order, then took off before we could give her our food order! When she returned with our wine, she spilled it while pouring and had to be asked to wipe up the spill, rather than get onto it straightaway...
Libertine means, someone who indulges in the pleasures of the flesh without any regard for moral standards.
Now I don't know about you, but when I'm considering patronising an establishment I don't want to be told that I'm immoral for doing so. In any case, the place really doesn't seem that sinful but sexy with the retro hanging light bulbs and lanterns. I loved the long tables with bench seats and black chain curtains that divided the area to make your own sultry private space.
The menu takes a broad view of the Americas - there's ceviche, empanadas, croquettes and Paella.
In the first section of the menu, little plates to share, you'll find jerk chicken which some of my friends had and soft-shell crab. I love the fact that you don't get messy fingers from having to dissect the flesh from the shell and pincers, easy to eat with knife and fork. I also had soft tacos with chicken, corn and a spicy guacamole and Louisiana Ribs which were really tasty and covered in meat.
The service was friendly and tentative and bar well stocked. I'd go again to try the mains. Shame I had no room to fit in the Key Lime pie.
Dropped in on a Monday evening for dinner. The place wasn't too busy when we got there. The bar area was definitely more popular than the restaurant.
We were seated promptly in the restaurant area in one of the booths. Seating was comfortable and the restaurant was nicely decked out.
Our waitress was friendly and really helpful when it came to ordering food. I had a cocktail, which was alright but tasted a little weak.
The food was tasty and was prepared well. The cornbread wasn't that great but generally no complaints from me. Their ribs were pretty good. Cooked well and it was seasoned well enough.
It didn't take too long for food to come out. I can't comment as to how the food quality and service efficiency is like when the place is busy. But it was all pretty good while I was there.
Overall, I won't mind going back again to try some of the other things on their menu.
Service here is dishonest. Their 'Libertine's own' ale on the menu is neither ale, nor their own. I called out the bartender because it did not taste right, and he admitted it was "some English stuff from a keg". Foolishly I went back on another occasion. I went to the bar before taking a table with a fried. I specifically asked the bartender that time if the 'ale' was now what they advertised it to be. He assured me it was. I ordered again, and unsurprisingly it was the same terrible stuff I'd had the first time. This really annoyed me so I complained to our server. She checked and returned, admitting again it was not what they advertised and offered me a refund. Which would be fine, except I found later when I checked my credit card statement that I had been charged the whole table's bill, on top of them charging my friend half the bill! Every item on the small dishes menu was deep fried. It is very clear that the management is putting revenue before honesty, scruples and guest experience here. I wouldn't mind the bland, unhealthy food and the crap drinks so much if they would charge accordingly and just be up front about what their establishment is.
Went in few weeks back for drinks and have to say i was impressed with the venue. So we called back last Sunday for food this time. I've seen some comments about the service at Libertine being slack or casual and have to agree, but it was a Sunday and its not really fine dining so it didn't bother us.
For meals i had the roast lamb and gnocchi was i was really impressed with, probably the best cooked roast lamb i've ever had. My partner opted for pan fried fish, not a fish lover myself but i have to say this was excellent.
Really impressed with Libertine and will no doubt be back!
Met some friends at Libertine for a friends birthday, there were 8 of us and we got one of the big tables in the restaurant area looking out of the window. Got there around 5pm to watch the sun go down and stayed there all night.
Had a great time and will be back for more soon, thanks Libertine!
Libertine is exactly what a restaurant should look like. Cool decor, exposed ceiling/brick wall open plan, dark candlelit ambiance. We had great service (it was Monday and was almost empty so I would assume any review stating otherwise went on a weekend) and the wine list was great. The menu LOOKED great. I ordered the roast duck and my partner, the pork belly. You would think both would come searing hot with crispy skin. But both came lukewarm and soggy. The pork belly was chewy and overcooked. The duck was okay but not worth $32. The food is not good value for money - and it's not very good, full stop. If you want great atmosphere and food and are looking for a similar price range - go to Sunday Painters or Depot. Both have a much MUCH higher standard of food, and even if you leave breaking the bank, you feel satisfied. Unlike Libertine.
No whisky on the drinks menu..?
dropped in on a wednesday as Libertine had been recommended by a friend. the decor is awesome! lots of candles and dim light and a good soundtrack too. got a nice both for our group and ordered cocktails and sharing plates. the cocktails were really good, and served in cool jars. the food also was really tasty. overall we had a really good time here and will be back. just one thing though... the girls didn't really 'get' the soaps in the toilets? different sure, cool... not sure.
Although I can't comment on the food on offer at Libertine one thing I can say is that the wine/drinks list is amongst the best I have seen in Auckland city.
It's reasonably priced for sure (quite surprising for a new venue like this) and there's a good balance of both local and international varieties.
My pick - the St Hallet Shiraz - is highly recommended. Hubby also was really pleased to see James Squire and Little Creatures feature on the beer menu.
The decor at Libertine is also faultless - I'll be back to sample it's food menu very soon.
I was taken here last night by a supplier, what a great design and ambience, a really fab place to sit and ejoy a few drinks and the little suckling pig amuse bouche was very nice and quite a surprise. The service we experienced was very pleasant and helpful. The meal we had however was ordinary, I would expect that poor quality from a 2 star motel not from such a great venue. We started with share plates. I asked the staff when the freshly shucked oysters were schucked - the answer: "today" - by the taste clearly not to order. The Jalapeno bread - dry and bland; the charred corn - well .. charred corn; the goat croquettes too wet and not enough goat; other items not memorable.
Main course I chose the chicken crown (staff couldnt explain why it was called that) overcooked chicken breast, tired beans and a poached tomato. Others had the Market fish which had just changed over to tarakihi and was apprently very nicely cooked but same tired beans and poached tomato. Handmade potato and sweet potato chips - soggy and limp. The chefs at the pass looked much the same and bored. I will go back to Libertine for drinks but not to eat.
I went in to Libertine for a drink with a couple of friends on Friday night. It was very quite and went up to the bar to order our drinks. It took a few minutes for anyone to notice us even thou we were the only customers at the bar and that there was at least five of them behind the bar. One barman appeared to be having a wine tasting. Eventually placed order but as the barman seemed to be more interested in things happening around him I decided to flag it. I've been in the industry now for 10 years and that is the worst service and attitude I have seen.
Libertine is first class in every way. Took a potential client here yesterday and I could not fault a single element of the experience. The jerk chicken had just the right level of bite and the cerviche was delicious and fresh.
I'm looking forward to a night visit so I can explore Libertine's menu in more detail and ultimately have a bit more time to relax and soak up the atmosphere.
Such a good first-up impression of the Libertine. Awesome setting amongst one of Auckland's most iconic buildings - it's stylish, relaxed but is in keeping with the heritage past.
Libertine is newly opened so I was keen to check it out over this weekend gone and really glad I did. I didn't have anything to eat but had a quick squiz at their tapas menu and it does look promising.
I did however have a few drinks - on a cold Auckland day the Albermarle pale ale was just what the doc ordered.
Victoria Park is becoming a legitimate destination in it's own right - all this competition is only good for the punters like me!
Looking forward to heading down to Libertine next week and see what they've done to Victoria Park too - looks really cool!
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