The Southern Alps and Fiordland Restaurants

Queenstown, as the main regional resort, has the widest range of restaurants. Throughout the area, menus focus on local produce, seafood, lamb, and venison. Wine lists often highlight South Island wines, especially those from Central Otago and Gibbston Valley. Cafés and restaurants driven by the summer tourist trade shorten their hours in winter. Dress standards are generally relaxed, with jeans or khakis acceptable almost everywhere. At high-end places, particularly in Queenstown, you'll need to reserve a table at least a day in advance.

Outside of Queenstown and Wanaka dining options can be limited. In summer, meals of some sort are available almost everywhere, but outside the high season, there are fewer options in the smaller settlements and they don’t tend to stay open late.

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  • 1. Bistro Gentil

    $$$$ | French

    Indulge with a modern fine French meal in a quiet setting with lake and mountain views on the outskirts of Wanaka. Each meal begins with a...Read More

  • 2. Burt.Ritos

    $$ | Mexican

    Burt.Ritos offers a local twist on food cart culture, with an American chef who quit a restaurant to operate out of a vintage trailer in the...Read More

  • 3. Kai Whakapai

    $$ | Eclectic

    This is a good place to sit shoulder to shoulder with the locals for breakfast on a crisp sunny morning with tables outside. It's just across...Read More

  • 4. Relishes Café

    $$$$ | New Zealand

    You could hit this lakeside spot for every meal of the day, starting with the bacon or salmon eggs Benedict or check the counter food for something...Read More

  • 5. Sasanoki Japanese Kitchen

    $$ | Japanese

    It's cheating to say this is the best Japanese place in Wanaka as it's the only one ... but this take-out eatery really is a big hit among the...Read More

  • 6. Ardmore Street Food Company

    $ | New Zealand

    The owners of this fully licensed café have a breakfast menu as sophisticated and extensive as their dinner menu: try the salmon-and-kūmara...Read More

  • 7. Café Fe

    $ | Café

    Located a short drive up the Cardrona Valley Road, Café Fe (Fe as in Mt. Iron) has great views, comfortable seating inside and out (including...Read More

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