I’ve always had this burning desire to find a really, really cool bar. Through my 20’s in Wellington I ruthlessly hunted it out (Motel was probably the closest I got) and I kept hunting through my 30’s in Auckland but I never found it – that is until we found Caretaker Bar.
I loved everything about this bar.
It was hard to find (tick). Get to 40 Custom Street East – go down a lane, through an orange door, through a curtain and down some stairs to this door. I was in love before we even walked in.
Once inside you are greeted personally and shown to your seat. It’s dark, the music just playing quietly in the background (totally my jam with Gypsy from Fleetwood Mac playing) and everyone seated on little tables. Big convex mirrors make the place look bigger but there can’t have been more than 50 people in there.
There’s no cocktail menu. The bartender just asks you a whole bunch of questions…
“What kind of spirits do you like?”
“Do you like it boozy or light?”
“Spicy or not?”
He then proceeds to pull out a whole bunch of unlabelled bottles (this is prohibition times remember) and mix, crush and stir right before our eyes. In less than a few minutes we have our drinks in front of us.
It’s clearly a gift because these were seriously amazing cocktails! Both James and I loved them.
Caretaker is the bar I’ve been looking for all my grown up life – and the best thing is that it’s a bar for grownups so it’s simply perfect timing. The only sad part for me is that a bar this cool is going to get insanely popular so it may be a couple more years before I can find myself a table there again.