Australia's seventh biggest city, Newcastle, is known for its relaxed beachy vibes, beautiful ocean vistas and thriving nightlife. Newcastle is the perfect compromise. It serves as the gateway between the big smoke of Sydney and rural NSW and is the perfect mix of small town and urban. And for this reason, it makes sense that Newcastle's pubs and bars are the perfect combination of metropolitan chic and good old fashioned country hospitality.
From breweries and pubs, to themed bars and old-fashioned speakeasies, these are the best pubs and bars in Newcastle you have to check out.
This Newcastle pub is known for their live music and truly epic food menu. Far from your typical pub fare, The Edwards is known for serving up seasonal farm-to-plate dishes. Think burgers (including vegan burgers), buttermilk chicken, ceviche and pandan and brown sugar pavlova for dessert. Their relaxed vibe and enviable beer garden makes this Newcastle bar the perfect spot for a Sunday sesh or a Friday night hang.148 Parry Street, Newcastle West
With some of the best views Newcastle has to offer, the cocktail bar at Merewether Surfhouse is the perfect place to watch the sunset over the ocean. A major drinks menu with great summertime spritzes and signature cocktails, as well as seriously stunning views, this is the perfect place for a girls night. The Italian inspired bar menu is also worth a try for anyone in the mood for dinner and drinks.
5 Henderson Parade, Newcastle
One of the best bars in Newcastle and winner of the 2016 ‘Best Regional Bar in Australia’ title, Coal and Cedar is the place to be. To get into this hidden Prohibition-style speakeasy you’ll need to text a special code to a number written on the wall of this signage free bar and wait for the door to open. This moody and eclectic small bar from duo, Ethan Ortlipp and Ryan Hawthorne, serves up some of the best cocktails in Newcastle. All the classic cocktails are available but the bartenders can mix you anything your heart desires...so get creative! The Coal and Cedar team also host cocktail masterclassesfor budding mixologists - which we can 100% recommend.
380 Hunter Street, Newcastle
You had me at ‘underground cocktail and toastie bar’! Uptowns is all about celebrating the sheer silliness of the 80s and 90s. Get ready for an interior that includes odes to the NBA, Nintendo, VHS, sneakers and Wrestlemania. The team behind Uptowns don’t take themselves too seriously and that’s what makes them one of the funnest bars in Newcastle. Start with their Golden Gaytime cocktail before ordering a Sizzler toast-inspired grilled cheese, a mac and cheese toastie and a classic sloppy joe. A place where you can play old school games, eat comfort food and drink great signature cocktails? Sign us up!
6/23 Watt Street, Newcastle
Newcastle’s first brewery, Foghorn Brewhouse, first opened its doors to the public in 2015. Housed in a historic warehouse on King Street, Foghorn is known for hosting a mix of live music and comedy events. At this unique Newcastle brewery, beer travels straight from the brewery to four 1800L serving tanks and then right into your glass, making this the freshest beer in all of Newcastle. The food from head chef Daniel Correia, is also well worth checking out for its American foodie flare. We recommend asking about the best food and beer pairings next time you visit.
218 King Street, Newcastle
An epic beer garden, live music, trivia, bottomless brunch and $14 counter specials each lunchtime, what more could you want from a Newcastle pub? The Criterion is a pub and hotel with a surprisingly great selection of bar food. With cauliflower nachos, veggie burgers and an eggplant parma on the menu, this is the perfect Newcastle spot for vegetarians. Plus, if you need somewhere to stay, you can spend the night too!
81 Bourke Street, Carrington
This sandstone pub on bustling Hunter Street is the place to sink a few drinks (pun intended)! With great classics like palomas and gin spritzes, as well as some pirate-y themed drinks and classic, greasy comfort feeds like hush puppies, mac and cheese, burgers, sangas and parmas, this is one of the best pubs in Newcastle.
102 Hunter Street, Newcastle
The Landing Bar and Kitchen is one of the best waterfront bars in Newcastle with a great view of Newcastle’s impressive working harbour. They’ve got a wine list, beers on tap, a mix of signature and classic cocktails but the food menu is where this bar really shines. With a modern Australian share plate menu, this bar pays tribute to Newcastle’s thriving food scene as well as their local artisan producers.
1 Honeysuckle Drive, Newcastle