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We are the Locals by the Sea, serving up seasonal fresh food catering to all dietary needs with our All-day Breakfast menu; Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan options . We love good coffee!! And have the biggest cabinet in Dunedin serving up freshly made muffins, scones, slices and RAW treats. Emersons Beers are on Tap, and a range of New Zealand's finest craft beers. Every Friday night the locals come down and enjoy some Live local music, food, and a good time. We also take bookings, and functions. See you soon!
Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, After-hours
Cafe, New Zealand, Contemporary
Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts Credit Cards, Table Service, Live Music, Waterfront
Reviews (424)
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All reviews brunch salmon seafood chowder cakes steak bread st clair sat upstairs great coffee love coming here busy place cabinet food great menu great lunch quick service vege esplanade
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Reviewed 6 days ago via mobile

Well let's just say this place is going backwards quite quickly! Used to love this place a few years ago. Think I've had my last visit here. Change a few things and I'll be back. Owners are rude and not welcoming, so why do I...want to give me your money? Staff are not friendly, not enough staff, asked a staff member to turn the very loud weird music down and she refused. Place looks dirty and tables are not getting cleared. Very overpriced and don't even go here on public holidays - surcharge makes it worse! Paid $33 for 2 × smoothies + 2 × fluffy 😳 Anyway I'm happy to just walk past and get a table at the amazing cafe on the corner next to the beach with a wonderful manager, friendly staff, amazing food and coffee, no surcharges and always excellent service. And yes I'm a local. Hopefully the owners will pay attention to all the bad reviews, but will they do something to improve their cafe???More

Date of visit: April 2021
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Visited yesterday, very disappointed as ordered the seafood laska, the amount of squid, muscle and prawn, crab was very small, the base was as thin as liquid and so hot and peppery tasting it burnt my throat. My Husband's bagel BLT was satisfying but mayonnaise...was spread like it was the main dish. Drinks were hot plus a delicious slice and we were overcharged. Friendly helpful staff but won't be going back. The place is tired looking and apart from a lovely location by the beach nothing else to recommend it.More

Date of visit: June 2021
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We had ten people to lunch for a birthday, and we took a birthday cake. The food was quite nice but when we had the birthday cake the woman said did we know it cost $25 to have. My sister said she was told it...was $20 on the phone (and she was fine with this) and there was a bit of a discussion with the waiter being quite rude and insistent. She left plates but we had to find another waiter to ask for forks and napkins. This rather spoiled the occasion and was unnecessary. We spent around $200 on food and then had coffees/teas as well so I think arguing over $5 was a bit much.More

Date of visit: May 2021
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Booked in advance for brunch at this popular cafe and glad we did as it was busy. Great menu as well as good selection of cabinet food. Fresh and delicious cinnamon scrolls. Chicken and maple syrup waffles was popular. The best crispy kumara chips we...have had. A great beach side cafe.Really good salmon too.More

Date of visit: May 2021
Reviewed 4 May 2021 via mobile

This was our first stop after arriving to Dunedin, so our family stopped for brunch. You need to order at the counter. I ordered the salmon omelette as it was absolutely delicious . I could only eat half as it was really large. The kids...has the waffles, however they were inedible as they were as hard as rocks - do not order. What would be great if cafes offered keto food and free wifi.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Reviewed 10 April 2021 via mobile

Decided to give starfish a try for lunch, the photos looked good and the menu didn’t look to bad but I definitely won’t be rushing back to dine here again, food was very average, trying to be flash but don’t have the basics right would...be the best way to describe it. On a side note the music was also far to loudMore

Date of visit: April 2021
Reviewed 29 March 2021 via mobile

We had a great meal today, upstairs with the doors open and the sun streaming in. We had an omlette, the chicken tacos, the fish of the day, and the kumara fries. We couldnt fault any of it. The place was busy, but the service...was great. We'll definitely be back!More

Date of visit: March 2021
Reviewed 3 March 2021 via mobile

The last few reviews were quite bad, due to service. We sat upstairs and had really really good service and it was quick. We were in at lunch time and it was busy downstairs. Got the smashed avocardo. There was a lot of avocardo and...was an extra $2 for the tumeric gluten free bread.More

Date of visit: March 2021
Reviewed 27 February 2021

I’m very very disappointed as I went to starfish for brunch and ordered their “avo on toast” the description stated it came with various toppings which I did not receive. The meal came with “2 poached eggs” but I cannot eat eggs so I asked...if I was able to switch them for anything else, even just a tomato. They said if I wanted to switch them it would cost an extra $6 which is ridiculous as eggs were a substantial part of the meal. So I said okay then I’ll take it without the eggs anyway. When I received it I was disappointed as it was one single piece of toast with some avo on it, nothing like the menu described. The “feta whip” we a small crumbling of feta. Don’t go here if you want to pay $22 for one small piece of toast.More

Date of visit: February 2021
Reviewed 21 February 2021

A glorious sunny day, perfect for brunch out on a rare trip to Dunedin, and I decided to go to the Starfish. The food being delivered to the tables looked good. However...the service was unbelievable appalling!!! The wait staff ignored me completely, Not one of...them addressed me, or acknowledged I was there. I had to initiate all interaction. Firstly I stood awkwardly, waiting outside and then inside trying to get someone’s attention to get a menu/table (15 minutes) I eventually asked a passing waitress for a menu and was told to look at the one on the wall, which I did and then waited again, and was completely ignored. Decided to find myself a table, and sat there for about 20 minutes. Asked a passing wait staff for a menu (she was pleasant and gave me a menu but said she was meant to be upstairs). I went inside and ordered scrambled eggs on ciabatta, coffee and water. The water never came, eventually my scrambled eggs did. On the first mouthful I discovered that the ciabatta ‘toast’ was soggy bread, a big lump stuck in my throat so I had to go to the counter to get water which was ungraciously given to me. I struggled through some of the meal because I was really hungry but finally gave up on the inedible soggy bread. Took my plate in requesting a fresh slice of toast.my plate was returned with a fresh slice. No apologies were given. Even thought the coffee was really good, I would not come back because of the service, or more accurately lack of service! It would have to be the worst service I have ever had anywhere in the world.More

Date of visit: February 2021
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Frequently Asked Questions about Starfish Cafe and Bar

Yes, Starfish Cafe and Bar offers takeaway services.

Yes, Starfish Cafe and Bar offers delivery services.

Starfish Cafe and Bar is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travellers:
  • Food: 4.5
  • Service: 4
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4