Schapiro's Sports Bar
San Francisco-born chef Otis Schapiro realised a long-held dream when he opened his Eden Terrace sports bar in April 2022. He’s also the co-owner of popular Grey Lynn neighbourhood restaurant Lilian, but his second venture is wholly personal, inspired by a love of sport first influenced by his American father.
While there are other places in Auckland to watch a rugby game or UFC match, at Schapiro’s you can do it sitting in a polished leather booth, surrounded by soaring ceilings and bespoke wooden fittings by specialist studio Blanc Industries.
Schapiro worked with the “hospitality obsessed” interior designers at Mille to reinvigorate the 180-capacity site, inside a characterful building on Upper Symonds Street. It’s housed several ventures over the last few years, but none he felt truly realised its potential.
The food menu is on-theme for an American-style sports bar, spanning burgers and sandwiches such as a Philly-style cheesesteak, a roast pork roll and a mushroom vegetarian option. Tuck into some fried chicken wings – Nashville or saucy-stye – with dipping sauces, some popcorn prawns or seasoned fries with aioli, and there are a few salads to refresh the palate such as radicchio with orange dressing, grapefruit and hazelnuts.
Get nostalgic with the sweets section, which includes thick shakes and soft serve in fancy flavours such as miso coffee caramel and raspberry honeycomb.
As with the rest of his bar, Schapiro wanted the drinks selection to have wide appeal. Most of the tap beers are from New Zealand makers (aside from Asahi and Carlsberg) and all are available by the jug. The sparkling wine and champagne list is more substantial than you’d expect – including a bottle of 2013 Louis Roederer Cristal; no doubt ready for someone celebrating a big win.
The wine list is eclectic, spanning New Zealand, Europe, California and South Africa, with classic, easy-drinking drops, low-intervention bottles and chilled reds. A concise yet left-of-centre house cocktail menu includes a highball with Jack Daniels raspberry rye whiskey, coconut, lemon and grapefruit soda, and a margarita with El Jimador tequila, turmeric agave, lime and jalapeno.
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