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El Matador

Certificate of Excellence
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196 Cuba Street | Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
+64 4-381 2999
5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Mon - Fri 5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
Fri 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Sat - Sun 10:00 am - 11:00 pm
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249 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 237: English reviews
Level Contributor
71 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 29, 2016 via mobile

A casual catch up with old friends at an eatery unknown to us. Noisy, great food, hospitable and authentically worn. We elected to enjoy the range of Pintxos but on another day the BBQ meats would have been a good option. The range of wine and beer was suitable and of course an Estrella Damm was compulsory. Loved it.

Thank NZKaren
Level Contributor
104 reviews
82 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 27, 2016 via mobile

Very impressed. Not a steak eater so was put off by the glowing steak reviews. But the tapas selection is exceptional. Enjoyed excellent sardines on sourdough plus a quite stunning squid with chorizo. Lovely Argentinian wine too.

Thank John H
Christchurch, New Zealand
2 reviews
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 27, 2016

Ribeye steak served with a rather plain boring iceberg salad, potato chips by another fancy name and a steak which had gristle. It was an alright steak, nothing special. Also, the salsa thing they put on the steak kind of takes away from one's enjoyment of the meat. The service was good but the place kept filling up with smoke... More 

Thank Thomas M
Wellington, New Zealand
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 25, 2016 via mobile

I'd heard many good things about this place so had to try it out for myself. I've been to Argentina and have to say, walking into the restaurant it actually smells like Argentina. The price is definitely reasonably the amount of food you get and the quality. I loved the chimichurri sauce and the churros are the lightest and fluffiest... More 

Thank 33Booboo33
Marlborough Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
87 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2016

I am picking this would be a pretty hard place to visit if you are a vegetarian. The whole place revolves around chargrilling and smoking meat, extractor fans work well but there's still a lovely smoky aroma through restaurant. I suggest you trust very enthusiastic staff when they advise on how much to order. We were a group of 7... More 

Thank Philip M
Whakatane, New Zealand
Level Contributor
148 reviews
63 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2016

Four friends met here for brunch while in Wellington for a weekend and this restaurant was recommended. The food did not disappoint - great eggs benedict, and my husband trying something new, had a breakfast cocktail, which he said was absolutely delicious. Staff were not impolite - just 'seen and not heard' and took away plates without saying anything, so... More 

Thank Nix51
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 15, 2016

Stepped into El Matador expecting two or three delicious tapas dishes accompanied with a glass of Tempranillo. The tapas menu was limited however three of the four fish dishes were off the menu and only three of the rest of the tapas were available! I've never been to a restaurant which has run out of chicken and mushrooms! The potatoes... More 

Thank PatriciaProudfoot
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 14, 2016 via mobile

Dropped in for dinner based on a recommendation from a work colleague and wasn't disappointed. Had the Asado Rib Eye with a side of potatoes. Big servings and really well cooked. Simple cooking done really well is always a winner for me. The two things that I would comment on that bought this down from a 5 out of 5... More 

Thank Jono M
Wellington, New Zealand
Level Contributor
32 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 14, 2016

Our second time here, and yes we had to wait a while for table, which we already prepared ourselves for! Enjoyed a couple of drinks at the bar, a great buzzing wee corner of the restaurant, cocktails were spot on. Dinner was delicious. Smoked pork belly and creamy prawns followed by rib eyes with the most delectable chimichurri over the... More 

Thank 2007noodle
Pukalani, Hawaii
Level Contributor
82 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 8, 2016 via mobile

This small restaurant located on Cuba Street is a fun step back into time. We enjoyed a dinner for about 8 of us and ordered almost the whole menu. The lamb and steak options were absolutely amazing. The portions are very generous. Many menu items were share plates and sizes (2-3 people each). So would recommend grabbing a few friends.... More 

Thank John W

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Steakhouse, Latin, Spanish, Argentinean, South American, Gluten Free Options
Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night
Restaurant features
Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar
Good for
Special occasions, Large groups, Families with children
Open Hours
10:00 am - 11:00 pm
5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
10:00 am - 11:00 pm
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 196 Cuba Street | Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
  • Location: South Pacific  >  New Zealand  >  North Island  >  Greater Wellington  >  Wellington
  • Phone Number: +64 4-381 2999
El Matador, a vibrant and rustic Buenos Aires style eatery and bar, offers quality cuisine and beverages with a Latin twist. Featuring NZ's first traditional Argentine wood-fired asador and parrilla, an open kitchen, boutique bar, sunny sheltered courtyard, superb service and a great vibe, El Matador is the perfect place for a relaxed lunch or dinner. Also enjoy weekend brunch, tapas, drinks and delicious desserts made by the award winning pastry chef. El Matador is rated a BEST RESTAURANT and LOCAL FAVOURITE by NZ's Cuisine Good Food Guide Awards 2014!

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from El Matador staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?