The Free House is untied to any brewery. It isn't a brewpub but rather a portal for the multitude of craft beers being created all over New Zealand. 

In the barren beer years of the early 2000's Mic and Eelco started holding quarterly beer tasting events called the Nelson Beer Fêtes. They did this in the selfish hope that some visionary soul would open a pub to irrigate the parched. Three years passed and the Fêtes grew in popularity, but the prophet failed to show. When the old Reformed church went up for sale. Mic and Eelco saw it as sign and in the quiet autumn days of April 2009, 

The Free House was created.

Thirst slaked. 








All our beers are cask or keg dispensed and since opening over 1000 different beers have been served through the three beer engines and 11 bright taps. The beer menu is ever changing, offering the opportunity to try new beers, and beer styles, whilst also providing the familiarity of a few favourites. About 99.9% of the beers we serve are New Zealand brewed beers and we do tasting flights too.


Nelson is wine growing region and as such the wine list is predominantly local. Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Albariño, Riesling, Blanc de Noir, all lovingly made by Nelson growers and winemakers that are very clever, and are nice people too.


In Upper Moutere, 35 kms from The Free House is New Zealand's largest traditional cider apple orchard, Peckham's. Real ciders made from 100% fresh juice, and made only in autumn with tree ripened fruit. They take their time, slow fermenting and ageing their ciders for at least six months. We always have two of them on tap.


From the Free House food caravan come hand cut chunky chips and other deliciousnesses. See the blackboard menu at the bar. The Free House also welcomes you to bring in your own food, or order from another local restaurant. (provided it isn't globally homogenous, branded fast food)

Opening Hours

Monday - Friday 3pm till 11ish

Saturday - Sunday 12 noon till 11ish

© 2017 by The Free House Ltd. 

    The Free House,

    95 Collingwood Street,

    Nelson, 7010

    03 548 9391

    Light and shade

    The afternoon sun streams through the leadlight windows of the old church.