10 Top Bars & Pubs in Port Elizabeth

Wine at sunset | © Rachel Strohm/Flickr
Wine at sunset | © Rachel Strohm/Flickr
Photo of Gill Lange
4 October 2017

Find out why Port Elizabeth is called The Friendly City and take a tour of the tons of bars that the Bay has to offer. Come day or night, there is always a great spot to chill and wind down where craft beer, boutique wine, cocktails and cognacs mix merrily with live bands, music and mouthwatering food.

For the Love of Wine

For the Love of Wine switches hats from day to night, standing as a retailer of specialised fine wines during the day and turning into a trendy and stylish wine bar come sunset. The establishment boasts a wine list that includes more than 250 wine labels and focuses on small, boutique and unusual wines. Enjoy wine as the art of winemaking intends it and sample wines from all over South Africa before choosing your favourite to take home. Farm house cheese, olives and biltong can be nibbled on in between glasses.

For the Love of Wine, 1st Floor, 20 Stanley St, Richmond Hill, Port Elizabeth +27 72 566 2692

The Music Kitchen

It’s always live and there is always a vibe at The Music Kitchen, an eclectic, live music venue that pairs great tunes with festive drinks and good food. Numerous local and national music artists have passed through the doors of The Music Kitchen that is large enough for a crowd, yet small enough for an intimate feel. From folk to rock and pop and blues, patrons will find music to suit their tastes as a large number of acts head to this venue each month.

The Music Kitchen, 69 Mangold St, Newton Park, Port Elizabeth +27 41 364 1964

Bridge Street Brewery

Brewery, $$$
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Bridge Street Brewery
Bridge Street Brewery | Courtesy of Bridge Street Brewery
Those that relish a nice, cold frosty will not want to miss out on a stop at the Bridge Street Brewery, the home of craft beer mastery. Here patrons can sample four distinctly different beers and two ciders, each made from carefully crafted recipes using natural ingredients and unique flavour profiles. This microbrewery also includes a gastro pub and tap room where patrons mingle along the banks of the Baakens River and de-stress from the grind of daily life. Friendly and informal and full of good time vibes, The Bridge Street Brewery is a great way to round off your day or warm up for a night out on the town.

Barney’s Tavern

Bar, Pub, Pub Grub, Wine, Beer, Cocktails, $$$
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Taking up a prime location on the beachfront, Barneys Tavern is one of Port Elizabeth’s landmarks that has been a firm favourite among Bay locals for years. It has one of the largest selections of beer on tap in the city and is always filled with a festive vibe, no matter day or night. Pub lunches are great here with views over the ocean, while at night the venue heats up with live music and laughter. The menu is extensive and patrons can expect good pub style food.

Ziggy’s Rock & Reggae Bar

Bar, Restaurant, South African, Seafood, European, Wine, Beer, Cocktails, $$$
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With a name inspired by Ziggy Stardust, David Bowie’s alter ego, and a great beachfront location, this vibey space offers cheerful fun for everyone. Relax to the soulful tunes of Bob Marley, BB King and other fabulous old musos while sitting on the deck in summer or in the cosy lounge with fireplace in winter. The menu specialises in tapas, seafood and grills so grab a bottle of crispy white or a long cold frosty and soak up the friendly hospitality.

Roof Garden Bar

Bar, Cocktail Bar, Pub Grub, Wine, Beer, Cocktails
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Cocktails | © ambernambrose/Flickr
Chillaxing in style with the Bay’s city skyline as a backdrop is what it’s all about at the hip and happening Roof Garden Bar. It’s the place to mingle on Friday afternoons when cocktails and craft beer can be enjoyed from 4pm, accompanied my live music and great food. The unique and original venue opens its roof when the weather is good while cold winter nights are kept covered up and toasty with a see-through dome. Roof Garden Bar is also a function venue, hosting fashion shows, wine evenings and corporate and special events. Roof Garden is not open every Friday so follow them to be in the know.

Unplugged Backyard Hangout

The brainchild of a group of young and talented Port Elizabeth locals, the Unplugged Backyard Hangout (UBH) features 12-hour music sessions that see an assortment of Bay musicians, together with music lovers from all walks of life jam the night away. The philosophy behind UBH lies in the idea of collaborative individualism, using teamwork and the formation of creative like-minded groups as a powerful tool towards higher achievement. Afro-pop, reggae, soul, jazz and poetic, it all blends seamlessly into a joyous celebration of life at the Unplugged Backyard Hangout. Among the local talent that has entertained at UBH includes Clique Claq, a well-known Eastern Cape band, so bring your ears and a bottle of wine and enjoy.

Unplugged Backyard Hangout, 3585 Lukwe Str, Kwazakele, Port Elizabeth +27 84 342 9762

The Beer Yard

More than just a garden, the Beer Yard exudes a warm and welcoming feeling with Bedouin styled tents surrounding a swimming pool that all get lit up in the evening with roaring fires and paraffin lamps. Craft beer and cider are among the most popular alcoholic refreshments and described by some locals as the best in the Bay. The retro rustic surrounds welcome casual attire and encourage plain old, unpretentious fun that can be accompanied by a great burger and fries or moreish thin crust pizza.

The Beer Yard, 1 Cooper St, Richmond Hill, Port Elizabeth +27 41 582 2444


Bar, Cocktail Bar, Restaurant, South African, Wine, Beer, Cocktails, Seafood, $$$
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Flaming Shooter
Flaming Shooter | © Yohann Legrand/Flickr
Salt is a cool and trendy restaurant and cocktail bar that hots up on a Friday night when the young and trendy of Port Elizabeth come out to play. The multi-cuisine establishment has an extensive wine list that includes cognac, champagne and a great variety of red and white wine. Those in more of a party mood can choose from a whole host of shooters, cocktail jars, craft beers and spirits. The food menu covers everything from pizza and pasta to nachos, burgers and flame grilled steaks giving patrons a good excuse to line their stomachs before heading off to the bar. Salt is super relaxed and laid back with a casual dress code.

Elephant Walk Country Pub

Restaurant, Bar, Pub, Vegan, Vegetarian, Gluten-free, South African, $$$
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Elephant Walk Restaurant & Chalets, Port Elizabeth
Elephant Walk Restaurant & Chalets, Port Elizabeth | Courtesy Elephant Walk
Lying on the scenic outskirts of Port Elizabeth, the Elephant Walk Country Pub offers a stylish and relaxing spot to ease down after a busy day in the city. The atmosphere is warm and inviting while the size of the pub gives a close and intimate feel. The bar carries an excellent range of premium local wines, rare whiskeys and other spirits, and naughty but nice cocktails can also be rustled up in a flash. The bar offers a pub fare menu while those with more of an appetite can choose to dine at the adjoining and highly popular restaurant, well known for its excellent food and fresh ingredients.

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