7 May 2019 | Written by Scott Martin

Christchurch’s 7 Best Cafes

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Our 7 favorite Cafes in Christchurch

We asked Christchurch local, Simon Liddy to shed some light on the cities best-kept Cafes. With his help, we’ve put together the ultimate guide to eating your way around this gorgeous South Island city.

So get ready to have your mouth water as we showcase the best Cafes in Christchurch!


1. Black Betty Cafe – for coffee connoisseur…

one of the best cafes in christchurch: black betty
Photo by Nancy Zhou | neatplaces.co.nz

Exposed high ceiling, a quirky industrial feel, with a slide of great food and even better coffee. Black Betty doesn’t muck around when it comes to nailing not only their menu but also their array of brewing methods for there coffees.

Black Betty knows their coffee, there’s no doubt about that. Customers can choose from brewing methods such as syphon, pour-over, aero-press, cold-drip and espresso. Luckily for us, all methods have been mastered by their barista’s so choosing really comes down to taste and preference (the friendly staff are also more than happy to let you know which method you might want to try).

In terms of food, you’ll be spoilt for choice with an extensive cabinet and menu on offer. From breakfast favourites such as French Toast Crumpets, waffles and Breakfast tacos, to sweet treats littering the cabinet. There’s no way you won’t find exactly what you’re feeling like at Black Betty’s.

Last but not least, this cafe is super kid friendly with a kids area to keep the little ones entertained while you catch up with friends and family. This eatery is your one-stop shop for a satisfying and refreshing breakfast for our lunch in the Garden City.

black betty address christchurch
Location here: 165 Madras St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011

2. Hello Sunday – locally sourced & organic produce for all diets…

christchurch's best cafes
Photo by Nancy Zhou | neatplaces.co.nz

This beautiful old building began its life as an 18th-century place of community connection as a Post Office before being delivered to its current site here in Sydenham. Now the owners of Hello Sunday, Christopher Penny, Yasmeen Clark and Jonathan Spark take great pleasure in bringing a unique and rare building’s latest rebirth, Hello Sunday café.

Hello Sunday is a welcoming, vibrant cafe that has transformed into a buzzing cafe with antique pews and an ode to the past. The cafe’s claim to fame is its array of food catering to a number of different dietary requirements. In addition to that, all their food is made from scratch and locally sourced that will leave you feeling like a million bucks. We recommend you try their baked goods prepared daily for a truly mouth-watering morsel.

Location here: 6 Elgin St, Sydenham, Christchurch 8023

3. Bunsen – Chemistry classroom vibes…

bunsen: cafe in christchurch
Photo by Nancy Zhou | neatplaces.co.nz

Housed in an 1877 building within the Christchurch Arts Centre, there’s no denying this cafe seriously stands out from the crowd when it comes to atmosphere and location.

in what was formally part of Canterbury University, customers find themselves surrounded by an array of decorations paying homage to the building original use as a chemistry classroom, hence the name Bunsen. There’s something about this cafe that sparks joy and community as customers are nestled amongst beautiful carpentry and familiar classroom nostalgia

When it comes to coffee, you’re in safe hands – you can’t ask for much better than a café owned by a coffee company. Switch Espresso is Bunsen’s parent company and the Switch team have curated a special blend for Bunsen called Dark Horse. Bunsen does a great job of showing off this delicious roast for all things espresso based, and offer a wide range of filter coffee (including an impressive syphon brewer which fits in perfectly with the chemistry lab feel) using single origin light roast beans which change weekly.

Sit outside on the restored furniture and watch the world go by on Worcester Boulevard. Bunsen is a little gem sitting amongst one of the city’s most treasured features and is well worth a visit for your next coffee, snack, meal or a glass of wine in the sunshine.

bunsen coffee in christchurch
Location here: 2 Worcester Blvd, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8013

4. Addington Coffee Co-op – Coffee with a twist of Charity…

addington coffee co-op

Addington Coffee Co-op is part of a larger organisation called Liminal, formed around strong values of fair and ethical ways of doing business.

You’ll be happy to know that they have committed to redistributing 70% of there profits back to the local community and to some of the producers and communities overseas that create the products they sell. This has helped build buildings and fund extra staff at our local school, build teacher’s accommodation in Ethiopia, help fund coffee replanting programmes in Central America, and help a fair trade apparel manufacturer in Kolkata to expand.

Addington Coffee Co-op not only is driven by an incredibly good cause, but they offer undeniably some of the best coffee in the garden city. For those of you that strive to find the best cup of joe regions have to offer, this cafe will not only tick that box but use the profits to help better communities, local and overseas.

address of addington cafe
Location here: 297 Lincoln Rd, Addington, Christchurch 8024

5. Unknown Chapter – Easy Breezy morning vibes…

unknown chapter: best cafe in chch
Photo by  Naomi Haussmann | www.neatplaces.co.nz

Floor length windows running both sides of the space mean this café Christchurch is not lacking in rich natural light, and a big old beautiful coffee roaster sits gleaming in the front window, a project the café looks set on starting soon. Seats tucked beneath a bench against the wide windows make a perfect spot for checking out passersby, while a mini outdoor area on the opposite side is a cosy nook for sunny days.

Wholesome salads, quiches, frittatas and creative sandwiches line the cabinet, making lunchtimes quick and easy for office day commuters looking for food on the run, while cakes, slices and scones provide easy options for the afternoon sweet treat. The Coffee beans are currently supplied by Coffee Embassy, and food is produced in-house in the small kitchen out back. All of the coffee we use is speciality graded and traceable back to the farmer.

At Unknown Chapter, they bake fresh on site using old family recipes.  Their menu also offers all kinds of brunch style fare, with an emphasis on free-range produce and creative new takes on classics

cafe christchurch
Location here: 254 St Asaph St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8011

6. The Black & White Coffee Cartels – for that quick coffee fix…

chch best cafes: The Black & White Coffee Cartels

This Cafe opened loud & proud, quickly becoming an iconic & loved coffee stop by the locals. It was among the first of the notable new cafes to grace Christchurch, kicking off a new café culture for a new city.

In 2014, Bink Bowler, our founder, arrived in Christchurch with a vision to build a new series of “coffee shops” for a new city. Like everything in the city, they would keep the idea of ‘the future’ in mind.

This cafe is perfect for when you need a quick coffee fix as it is found in 4 locations throughout the garden city. So next time you’re looking for a pre-work latte, make sure to give The Black & White Coffee Cartel a try!

best cafes in christchurch
Location here: 83 Victoria St, Christchurch Central, Christchurch 8013

7. The Lotus Heart – A Vegetarians Paradise

For the vegetarians in the group, you can’t go past “The Lotus Heart”. Set in an idyllic temple-like setting, this restaurant is sure to impress.

You won’t find standard cafe/restaurant food at “The Lotus Heart”. As well as being exclusively vegetarian, their menu is primarily plant-based and has options for the gluten free too. They also have a “garlic and onion free” menu, for those with allergies or religious exemptions.

If you’re looking for a satisfying meal that won’t leave you feeling bloated and tired, check out “The Lotus Heart”.


christchurch backdrop

Tickled your taste buds? Well, we’ve got plenty of stunning holiday homes in Christchurch that are a perfect base for a Foodie Adventure!


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