Paying tribute to the high-flying wrestling style Lucha Libre, The Lucha Lounge is something you'd expect to find in the midst of K'Rd, not tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Auckland's most popular weekend shopping destination - Newmarket. The quirky bar lives up to its name with retro images of masked luchadores emblazoned on the walls, and given its small size and fireplace nestled in the corner, it’s intimate enough to feel like you’re actually in someone’s lounge.
The friendly staff make you feel at home right off the bat and it’s not uncommon to see patrons conversing with relaxed owner Karyn up at the bar.
Lucha keep it simple with their menu, offering a selection of three Mexican classics including tortilla chips with salsa ($5), tacos and quesadillas; both reasonably priced at $10 in the choice of three flavours - steak, chicken and kumara and black bean. On the contrary the cocktail menu is extensive and one to be admired. All hansomely priced at $14.50 each, the list varies from your straight-ahead margarita to an assortment of lesser known options for the adventurous pallet - the Corn & Oil, a classic of the West Indies and apparently Keith Richards’ favorite drink, is made up of gunpowder-infused rum, black strap rum, falernum (Carribean syrup) and bitters. The fridge is also stocked with a small selection of beers, starting from $5 each.
Doubling as a live venue, The Lucha Lounge has been host to an impressive roster of local and international bands. With the tiny stage no more than a few metres squared, performers are forced to make do with the close quarters, ultimately showing their true colours. No smoke and mirrors here. Legend has it that an 11-piece band once crammed onto the tiny stage. The room also allows for an intimate audience experience, those in attendance practically becoming part of the show.