Guide to the Best Craft Beer Spots in Wellington

Welcome to Wellington, the craft beer capital of New Zealand! Nestled between rolling hills and a picturesque waterfront, Wellington offers a beer-tasting experience like no other. 

Whether you’re a seasoned beer aficionado or just dipping your toes into the world of craft brews, this comprehensive guide will take you on a journey through the top craft beer spots in Wellington, sharing insider tips, personal anecdotes, and everything you need to know to make the most of your beer-tasting adventures.

Best Craft Beer Spots in Wellington

Wellington: A Craft Beer Haven

Rich Brewing History

Wellington’s love affair with beer dates back to its early days of European settlement. What began as small-scale brewing operations has blossomed into a thriving craft beer scene that celebrates innovation and creativity. 

Breweries like Garage Project and Fork & Brewer pay homage to this rich brewing history while pushing the boundaries of traditional beer styles.

Creative Culture

One of the things that sets Wellington’s craft beer scene apart is its vibrant arts and culture scene. 

This creativity spills over into the breweries, resulting in bold flavors and experimental brews. 

From fruit-infused sours to barrel-aged stouts, Wellington breweries are constantly pushing the envelope and surprising beer enthusiasts with new and exciting offerings.

Scenic Setting

What better backdrop for enjoying a cold beer than Wellington’s stunning landscapes? Whether you’re sipping a pint on a sunny terrace overlooking the harbor or cozying up in a rustic pub on a rainy day, the city’s natural beauty enhances the beer-drinking experience. 

Take in panoramic views of the waterfront at Fork & Brewer or escape to the lush green hills surrounding Garage Project Taproom for a truly immersive beer-tasting experience.

What Makes a Great Craft Beer Spot?

When it comes to choosing the best craft beer spots in Wellington, several key factors come into play.

Variety of Brews

A great craft beer spot should offer a diverse selection of brews to cater to different tastes and preferences. Whether you’re into hoppy IPAs, rich stouts, or fruity sours, you should be able to find something that tickles your taste buds. 

Husk, for example, boasts a carefully curated beer selection that includes everything from crisp pilsners to robust porters.


The ambiance of a craft beer spot can significantly impact your overall experience. Whether you prefer cozy pubs with dim lighting and exposed brick walls or lively breweries buzzing with energy, finding a spot that matches your vibe is essential. Garage Project Taproom, with its industrial-chic space and laid-back atmosphere, is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy a pint with friends.

Knowledgeable Staff

Friendly and knowledgeable staff can enhance your beer-tasting experience by offering recommendations, sharing brewing insights, and guiding you through the menu. 

At Fork & Brewer, the passionate bartenders are always ready to help you navigate their extensive beer selection and find the perfect brew to suit your palate.

Top Craft Beer Spots in Wellington

Now that we’ve covered what to look for in a craft beer spot, let’s dive into some of the best places to quench your thirst in Wellington.

1. Fork & Brewer

Located in the heart of Wellington, Fork & Brewer is a must-visit for beer lovers. With 40 taps showcasing a rotating selection of brews, there’s always something new and exciting to try. 

Whether you’re a hop head, a malt aficionado, or a fan of experimental brews, you’ll find plenty to love at Fork & Brewer.

Insider Tip: Don’t miss their famous beer and food pairings – the chefs here are masters at creating dishes that complement the flavors of the beer. 

From hearty burgers to gourmet small plates, the food menu is just as impressive as the beer selection.

2. Garage Project Taproom

Garage Project’s taproom is a mecca for craft beer enthusiasts, offering a constantly changing lineup of experimental brews that push the boundaries of traditional beer styles. 

Located in an industrial-chic space in the Aro Valley, the taproom is a hub of creativity and innovation. 

Pull up a stool at the bar, chat with the friendly staff, and embark on a tasting journey unlike any other.

Personal Story: I’ll never forget the first time I tried their Pernicious Weed IPA – it was love at first sip. Since then, I’ve made it a point to visit the taproom regularly to sample their latest creations and soak in the vibrant atmosphere.

3. Husk

Tucked away in an unassuming alley off Ghuznee Street, Husk is a hidden gem beloved by locals and visitors alike. 

With its cozy atmosphere, friendly staff, and carefully curated beer selection, it’s the perfect spot to unwind after a long day of exploring the city. 

Whether you’re craving a crisp pilsner, a robust porter, or something in between, Husk has you covered.

Insider Tip: Keep an eye out for their themed tasting events, where you can sample rare and limited-edition brews while mingling with fellow beer enthusiasts. 

It’s a fantastic opportunity to expand your palate and discover new favorites.

These are just a few of the top craft beer spots in Wellington, each offering a unique experience for beer lovers. 

Whether you’re a local looking to explore your city’s vibrant beer scene or a visitor eager to discover what makes Wellington the craft beer capital of New Zealand, be sure to add these spots to your itinerary.

Beyond the Beer: Food and Fun

While the beer is undoubtedly the main attraction, don’t overlook the food and entertainment options at these craft beer spots.

Food Pairings

Many craft beer spots in Wellington offer delicious food menus designed to complement their brews

Whether you’re in the mood for hearty pub grub, gourmet small plates, or artisanal cheese platters, there’s something for every palate. 

At Fork & Brewer, for example, you can indulge in mouthwatering dishes that perfectly complement their extensive beer selection. 

From juicy burgers to flavorful seafood, the menu is crafted to enhance your beer-tasting experience.

Live Music

Nothing beats enjoying a cold beer while listening to live music. 

Many craft beer spots in Wellington host regular performances by local musicians, adding to the vibrant atmosphere. 

Whether you’re tapping your toes to acoustic tunes at Garage Project Taproom or grooving to upbeat melodies at Husk, live music adds an extra layer of enjoyment to your beer-tasting adventure. 

Check the event calendars at your favorite spots for upcoming gigs and make a night of it with friends.

Engage with the Craft Beer Community

One of the best parts of exploring the craft beer scene in Wellington is connecting with fellow beer enthusiasts. 

Here are a few ways to get involved:

Join a Beer Club

Many craft beer spots host beer clubs or tasting events where you can meet like-minded individuals, learn from experts, and deepen your appreciation for beer. It’s a fantastic way to expand your knowledge and make new friends who share your passion. 

Garage Project Taproom often hosts tasting events where you can mingle with other beer lovers and gain insights from the brewers themselves.

Share Your Experience

Whether it’s through social media, online forums, or local beer festivals, sharing your experiences helps to foster a sense of community within the craft beer scene. 

Don’t be shy about posting photos, writing reviews, or starting conversations – you never know who you might inspire to embark on their own craft beer adventure. 

Use hashtags like #CraftBeerWellington and #BeerLoversNZ to connect with others who share your passion for great beer.

By engaging with the craft beer community, you’ll not only deepen your appreciation for craft beer but also make lasting connections with fellow enthusiasts. 

So grab a pint, raise your glass, and toast to the incredible world of craft beer awaiting you in Wellington!

Craft Beer Community


Congratulations – you’re now armed with everything you need to embark on your craft beer adventure in Wellington! From hidden gems to iconic breweries, the city has something to offer every beer lover. 

Let’s recap what we’ve covered in this guide:

  • Wellington’s Craft Beer Scene: We explored Wellington’s rich brewing history, creative culture, and scenic setting, all of which contribute to its reputation as the craft beer capital of New Zealand.
  • What Makes a Great Craft Beer Spot: We discussed the key factors to consider when choosing the best craft beer spots, including variety of brews, atmosphere, and knowledgeable staff.
  • Top Craft Beer Spots: We highlighted three of the best craft beer spots in Wellington – Fork & Brewer, Garage Project Taproom, and Husk – each offering a unique experience for beer enthusiasts.
  • Beyond the Beer: We explored the culinary and entertainment offerings at these craft beer spots, including food pairings, live music, and opportunities to engage with the craft beer community.

Now, armed with insider tips and personal anecdotes, it’s time to embark on your own craft beer adventure in Wellington. 

Whether you’re exploring the bustling streets of the city or venturing into the hidden alleyways, be sure to raise a glass and toast to the incredible world of craft beer awaiting you.

Remember to share your experiences, connect with fellow beer enthusiasts, and spread the word about the amazing craft beer scene in Wellington. 

And most importantly, have fun exploring, tasting, and savoring the diverse flavors that make Wellington’s craft beer spots truly special.

Frequently Asked Questions, 

What makes Wellington the craft beer capital of New Zealand?

Wellington is renowned as the craft beer capital of New Zealand due to its vibrant craft beer scene, boasting numerous breweries and craft beer bars within the city and surrounding areas like Upper Hutt and the Kāpiti Coast.

What are some recommended craft beer bars in Wellington?

Some top craft beer bars in Wellington include Malthouse, Goldings Free Dive, and Hashigo Zake, each offering a unique atmosphere and a wide selection of beers to cater to beer enthusiasts.

Which breweries are highlighted in Wellington’s craft beer guide?

The craft beer guide to Wellington features breweries like Garage Project, ParrotDog, and The Black Dog, known for their innovative brews and distinct beer styles, offering visitors the chance to taste a variety of craft beers in the city

What are some craft beer events and festivals in Wellington?

Wellington hosts events like Beervana, Brewday, Beers at the Basin, and Oktoberfest, providing opportunities for beer lovers to enjoy a range of craft beers, live entertainment, and unique beer creations in the city

How is craft beer defined in New Zealand and what distinguishes it from mainstream beer?

In New Zealand, the term “craft beer” is not strictly defined but is generally associated with small breweries producing innovative, interesting, and flavorful beers. 

Craft beer is often characterized by its independence from larger alcohol manufacturers and its focus on creativity and unique flavors, setting it apart from mainstream beer brands like Lion Red or Steinlager.