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Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe

3_half star rating 22 reviews

Telephone 09-300 6226

6-8 Vulcan Lane
Auckland Central
Auckland City

Cuisine:
A La Carte, Belgian, Seafood, Gastro Pub Food
Hours:
Mon - Fri 7am - Late
Sat - Sun 9am - Late
Provided by business

Overview

The Occidental Bar is proud to serve authentic Belgian cuisine, accompanied by a vast range of fine Belgian beers, plus some of the best wines from around NZ & Australia. The Occidental’s signature dish is its steaming mussel pots, or perhaps try our famous mussel platters. The Occidental Hotel was originally opened in 1870 by an American sailor, and quickly became known as one of Auckland’s finest hotels. The historic building was transformed beautifully in 1999, into the very 1st authentic Belgian Beer Cafe south of the equator. The Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe specialises in hosting fabulous functions. Plus you can join the fantastic customer loyalty programme, with a “FrenzCard”, which provides an easy way to earn & spend real rewards instantly.

Photos

Photo of Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe

More Information

Categories:
Restaurants, Bar & Brasseries, Bistros, Pubs
Parking:
Pay & Display
Price Range:
Moderate, $15 - $25
Attire:
Casual
Good For Groups:
Yes
Good For Children:
Yes
WI-FI:
Free
Alcohol:
Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cocktails
Wheelchair Accessible:
Yes
Takes Reservations:
Yes
Meals Served:
Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Brunch, Late Night, Dessert
Payment Types:
EFTPOS, Visa, MasterCard, AMEX, Diners
Seating For:
90
Outdoor Seating:
Yes

Reviews for Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe

2 star rating
by Sue B.
12th July 2014

First of all the service was excellent, and there are no qualms with the service on our visit, and we have had a nice family breakfast previously. We sat behind the bar at a table and ordered a salmon kumara stack plus chilli prawns with our drinks – the salmon kumara stack was cold salmon, lettuce and a few crunchy kumara chips for $15 and the chilli prawns were about 6-7 prawns (only) for $15 with a piece of bread 9 (would recommend a few good dishes only, and take out these add ons)- we don’t feel our dishes were value for money, so wouldn’t recommend these dishes. While we were eating, there was a huge commotion of delivery men opening the door behind us and crashing down the stairs with the food and beer deliveries, and that went on pretty much while we were trying to eat, and would recommend deliveries be timed before the business is open to customers.

3 star rating
by Jennifer J.
7th May 2014

Food was really nice and good size portion. However, the way the food was plated wasn’t practical. Ordered the pot of mussels and was given a plate that was too small to put the empty shells which ended up all over the table. A bowl would have been better. Also we were not given the usual bowl of water to clean your fingers. The dish came with side of fries and 2 of us had ordered the mussels pot, so our fries came in 1 big bowl to share, except we were seating at opposite end of the table with 6 people in between us. I would go back but probably not very often.

Comment from Frenzigroup L. of Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe 8/05/2014   
Hi Jennifer, Thanks very much for your review. We are pleased…    More »
1 star rating
by Brett A.
21st October 2013

This establishment was the single worst restaurant/cafe I have ever been to.
It all started when we walked in the door and stood awaiting service while another couple complained about something (unfortunately I didn’t overhear what their complaint was about)
We were seated promptly enough but were not provided with cutlery and the table was not wiped down properly. We ordered meals and coffees and after being served our coffees we waited for our food. And waited. And waited. I ordered a second coffee and was assured our meals were “not too far away now”. After a wait of much more than an hour and having watched two tables, one larger and one smaller than ours, be served meals before us despite having arrived after we did, we left without having ours arrive (the large table was even finished eating and left in the time we sat waiting for our food)
There was 0 explanation as to why our meals were taking so long and I find this inexcusable, it’s not like our order was complicated or exotic (waffles, pancakes and a cooked breakfast)
We will never be back and will warn all of our friends, family and co-workers to not visit this place.

4 star rating
by Keith B.
25th July 2013

Great place, love the food and service was great even though we used a deal voucher. Slightly pricey without the voucher but generous helpings and tasty food.

1 star rating
by Sarah
13th May 2013

Have been here many times and enjoyed the food, however, this experience was very bad. We had 5 people at our table for some waffles at lunch time. Wasn’t very busy yet it took over 1 hour to get 5 servings of waffles and a plate of chips out. We ended up having to get it takeaway which took another 15min and eating the chips and food cold. There was no explanation for the delay or apology and we were still expected to pay full price. Very disappointing.

Comment from Frenzigroup L. of Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe 25/07/2013   
Hi Sarah, thanks for your review. We are very sorry that you were…    More »
4 star rating
by Nicole T.
17th March 2013

Great surroundings.

I like the rustic look. Very few drinking place has this yesteryears charms.

Nothing unusual on the menu. Good variety of drinks.

Great night out.

4 star rating
by Anna N.
13th February 2013

Update: Decided to go here again and was pleasantly surprised. The salmon was melt in your mouth good! Good service too! Definitely would go again

3 star rating
by Mwkyla
10th August 2012

The mussles and flavoured beers are a great novelty and the service is good. Last time we were there the waitress was really friendly and attentive. Live bands here on the weekends are great too!

4 star rating
by Deena Y.
23rd July 2012

This is my #1 choice for Friday drinks. It gets really busy but if you can find a seat it’s worth it. I hardly order food because beer + frites is pretty much all you need.

The only problem is that they are not big enough! They get so busy there’s hardly anywhere to sit – I know this is not their fault but last time I was there they asked us to shift tables to an empty one next to us so they could take our table away when they could have just taken the one that was already empty! Don’t know what they were smoking but overall an awesome bar with a lot of atmosphere.

4 star rating
by Jennifer H.
1st June 2012

Came here during a public holiday, even with the huge holiday tax it was a pretty good experience! My meal wasn’t that amazing (salmon with kumara), tho it was tasty, i thoroughly enjoyed the huge pot of mussels and my bf’s pasta! Lovely place with a slightly expensive menu but you do get what you pay for. The service was OK, nothing to complain about.

5 star rating
by Wilson J.
14th March 2012

Great food, great beer, great prices.

Have been here a few times now, and it has not disappointed me yet. Great service, the staff are particularly friendly and go out of their way to help you.

The Occidental has a really nice vibe about it, been here with a few of my mates and it’s been a great place to catch up and have a beer.

Try a Belgian beer they are delicious.

Very highly recommended, will definitely become a regular.

3 star rating
by Kaylie
12th March 2012

My friend and I came here for lunch today for some mussels. We asked the waitress when we ordered if it was half price for mussel dishes today, she informed us it was. When we came to pay, the lady at the tills told us because we had ordered a half kilo it was NOT discounted. This means that we paid more for less, had we been informed when we ordered we would’ve ordered the 1 kilo option.

Update: it was staff misinformation that resulted in this error which they have since rectified, hopefully they will put up better signage regarding their deals in the future. The food itself was quite nice. We had one dish of steamed mussels and one grilled. We found the steamed one much nicer.

So, while the food is quite nice make sure you check the bill and only the 1 kilo mussel option is half price on Monday’s.

5 star rating
by Karen R.
25th February 2012

Our CBD pub&food crawl last night wouldn’t have been complete without some mussels & beer at the Occidental.

The mussels were fabulous as always. Plus, the kitchen prepped us some extra vege-topped mussels without any bacon toppings when we asked if we could avoid any red meat on the $19.50 mixed platter of grilled mussels (there were about 5 different toppings… all were delish – especially the ones with melted cheese). We appreciated the extra & unflinching effort from the waitress & the kitchen to go the extra mile. Great service.

I enjoyed a lovely wine, while the Leffe Blonde went down a treat for my partner.
We were ‘oohing’ and ‘aahing’ over the mussels throughout the meal… and the waitress downstairs was excellent in finding us a table for two upstairs next door.

The space next door is like a little private function space with its own bar, and they had filled it with 6 or 7 tables for casual diners. It was fab, because it was quiet, so a great space for conversation.

Loved it.

2 star rating
by theTaster
8th January 2012

Felt really disappointed today, I’ve been there couple of times and ok, I knew service isn’t that great, but today was just ridiculous. Arrived there for lunch with my partner, we got stand for more than 10 min, while the waitress was chatting with a couple aside us and didn’t give a sh*# we were there waiting, then we decided to take a table, I’d to clean my table, got the menus and wait, wait, wait and no one came to get our order. So we left the place…
Come on, the place wasn’t full…
I think the staff should be more professional and perhaps go to a hospitality course and learn how to do customer service properly, or just find another job if you are not happy doing it. Shame on you.
I’ll come back cos I like the food and I really hope the manager can fix this situation.

4 star rating
by Jen
6th July 2011

Not a big fan of their food since I absolutely hate mussels. I like their selection of beer. Might be more expensive then what you are used to paying but when you look at the price to alcohol content ratio it is pretty good. Love the pretty glasses.

5 star rating
by Pivon
23rd March 2011

Excellent place to go. Good value for my money. Great Food and fantastic range of Belgian Beers. Staffs were friendly and efficient. Live music on Friday & Saturday were the best in town. I think they were Recliner Rockers and KGT. My favourite place when I am in the CBD.

4 star rating
by susan
23rd March 2011

Great Food, Fantastic Beers!!!!!
The staff was really friendly though they are super busy….
Highly recomended, absolutely my favorite bar!

1 star rating
by CherylM
5th February 2011

The Occidental was always a favourite of ours, but over the past couple of years has really gone downhill. We had boycotted coming here for dinner as there was always something wrong with the food (eg seafood chowder full of veges with A mussel). But lunches were ok until recently we noticed just how filthy the place really is. It perpetually stinks, and is full of flies. Disappointing.

1 star rating
by Bubble w.
7th January 2011

I have enjoyed the Belgian Beer Cafes in the past, but it has been a while since I visited one.
The Occidental is in need of some maintenance. The foot rest at the bar has fallen down, one on the seats in a booth has fallen through, the place smells of old kitchen cooking fat.
The staff did not pick up any rubbish (including mussel shells) from the floor and seemed quite disinterested in serving.
While the food was adequate, although steak over cooked it was on the high side for it’s quality. The beer was well overpriced.
I will not be going to another Belgian beer cafe. Very disappointed.

5 star rating
by Annamay H.
4th October 2009

1. Great mussels
2. Great service
3. Great location
4. Great prices

Six of us arrived and sat at a small table because it was so busy, just after we ordered the bartender offered us a larger table because our food would not fit on our table, it was very kind, and he was right.

Another bartender came up to us during our dinner and offered us a loyalty card this put 10% of our meal onto the card for next time, you can also add to this card every time you go. This was great, because we had just spent so much money, we automatically gave us a free meal for our next visit.

Highly recommended.

4 star rating
by Chris
8th February 2008

The food at Occidental Belgian Beer Cafe is always great and their belgian beer is always nice and cold

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