Brisbane Bars Bucket List | Gourmand and Gourmet

Brisbane Bars Bucket List

Turns out we’re chucking a sickie tomorrow…

Everyone has their favourite sipping spot, whether it’s your local suburban pub or a stylish inner-city parlour. 

We’ve rounded up our top bars in Brisbane, and strongly encourage you to hit up each and every one of them. Maybe not all in one day, but hey, who’s stopping you?

Lobby Bar | The Calile Hotel | Fortitude Valley

Luxe, but totally warm and welcoming, The Calile Hotel’s Lobby Bar is one of our favourite spots for a drink and bite to eat.

Lobby Bar offers a considered wine list that showcases Australia’s finest, a range of tap and bottled beers, and a cocktail menu full of must-tries. We’re big fans of the Honey Sour (Glenlivet, honey water, gingerbread, lemon, and aquafaba), and of course the signature Calile Spritz (gin, Aperol, crème de peche, lime, and soda).

You’ll come for the drinks and stay for the eats, with the kitchen–under the guidance of acclaimed chef Andrew Gunn–serving hearty breakfast plates, light lunch options and evening tapas. It’s time to lobby your nearest and dearest to join you at this James Street beauty…

The Gresham | CBD

With a rich history that has earned it icon status in Brissy, The Gresham remains the only venue with a heritage bar license in Queensland. The only thing more impressive than this bar’s history is the beverages it serves up! The sweet, buttery, coconutty concoction that is the Sunnyboy is our go-to, alongside the Oh Negative complete with Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz gin, Okar, Chamberyzette, lemon, and salt. 

MAYA Mexican | Fortitude Valley

With views for days and five margaritas to choose from, MAYA is the pop-up taking over Eleven Rooftop Bar for the next little while. Spend your night at the bar working through the 

extensive list of tequila, mezcal, and sotol, while treating yourself to a few bites of contemporary Mexican street food. 

Maker | South Brisbane 

A stand out in the cocktail bar scene, Maker truly lets the drinks do the talking. Intimate and sophisticated, this Fish Lane bar has a curated list of wines, adventurous cocktails, and intriguing small bites. 

Death and Taxes | CBD

You know it’s good when you walk in and see a grand chandelier and back bar displaying over 1000 spirit bottles… 

This moody joint is tucked away in Burnett Lane, and offers tasty sips like The Innkeeper (Don Julio blanco, elderflower, green apple, Manzanilla, and pale ale), and Spinning Wheel (Ketel One vodka, vermouth, raspberry eau de vie, ruby grapefruit, and saffron). 

Wilston Village Bar | Wilston

A wholesome suburban spot, Wilston Village Bar is a newcomer to the Brisbane bar scene. Quickly catching the eye of northside locals (and those who travel across town to be part of the action!), this bar is a bustling social hub. Sip on cold ones alongside plates of antipasto, burgers, and pub-style mains, and enjoy the company!  

  • Alba
Alba Bar and Deli | CBD

Influenced by the pintxos bars of San Sebastian, Alba Bar & Delicatessen is pouring the goods in chic Burnett Lane. Knock back sherry, wine, and cocktails, grab a few bite-sized Spanish morsels, and wonder why this bar didn’t enter your life sooner.

The Junk Bar | Ashgrove 

An eclectic, moody boozer, The Junk Bar is far more than a suburban bar. With an intriguing range of cocktails, an old school fit-out, and an insanely talented bar team, make The Junk Bar the next one on your hit list.

Savile Row | Fortitude Valley

This lavish spot is hidden in plain sight–just look for that signature orange door on Ann Street…

Pouring some of the city’s best sips, Savile Row is a haunt that boasts an eye-catching cocktail menu and cosy nooks waiting to be settled in to. 

Piano Bar | Emporium Hotel | South Bank

Walk into the extravagant lobby of Emporium Hotel and be blown away by the Piano Bar–a space complete with a cascading chandelier, black mirrored surfaces, and a grand piano. Take a peek at the signature cocktail selection or go for a classic (this place screams martinis!) and enjoy oysters, club sandwiches and indulgent desserts. 

Bar Pacino | CBD 

We have two words for you, Brisbane. Nutella shots.

This picture-perfect riverfront spot is known for its functions, but also has a rockin’ bar that slings cocktails, beers, and wines, and a kitchen that dishes up some next-level Italian eats. 

Tetto Rooftop Bar | Everton Park

Oh, would you look at that! It’s Aperol o’clock! 

Bringing the sun-soaked coastal bars of Italy to the heart of the northside, Tetto Rooftop Bar boasts rustic aesthetics, a fresh menu, and loads of refreshing cocktails to be enjoyed under those signature orange and yellow umbrellas. 

Super Whatnot | CBD

One of the coolest kids we know, Super Whatnot sits pretty in Burnett Lane, serving a huge range of beers, wines, and cocktails. Our rec? The horchata colada, of course. 

Shady Palms | Stones Corner

We have found the real Slim Shady. Only he’s not slim–he’s full of burgers, craft beers, and cocktails. The vibes are on point at Shady Palms, stretching from the front bar to the beer garden. As well as beers and bites, we hear they host a mad trivia night, too! 

Brooklyn Standard | CBD

A neat spot loved by music lovers and drinkers alike, this boozer is hidden below Eagle Lane, serving drinks, eats, and tunes. Put simply, a trip to Brooklyn Standard is never not a good time. 

Netherworld | Fortitude Valley

24 beers on tap. 40 odd arcade games and countless consoles. A diner with bites to suit the whole gang. Whether you’re an arcade game nerd, a board game lover or just on the hunt for a new drinking hole, Netherworld has you well and truly covered. 

The End | West End

Craft beers, natural wines, and cheeky cocktails await at this bar and bottle shop. Look for the rainbow, enter The End, and be prepared to taste a drop you’ve never even heard of. 

Riverbar & Kitchen | CBD

We have your Friday afternoon sorted Brisbane…

Head riverside, nab a picnic table at Riverbar & Kitchen, and work your way through those cocktail jugs! When you start to feel peckish, a few pizzas wouldn’t go astray.

Beyond The Pale | Coorparoo 

This hotspot practically IS Coorparoo. Dedicated to the suburb and its rich history, Beyond The Pale is a place for locals. With twelve taps of local brews, cocktails inspired by the southside, and a bar menu perfect for snacking, this place truly goes above and beyond. 

Gerard’s Bar | Fortitude Valley

Gerard’s Bistro is a hard act to follow, but Gerard’s Bar gets a 10 from us. With a refined snacks menu, some phenomenal cocktails and a wine list to behold and, this James Street hotspot is a star in its own right. Encore! 

Canvas Club | Woolloongabba 

Impeccable and personable service of only the finest food and drinks. That is the ethos that Canvas Club chooses to live by, and it means that every time you step foot in this place, you feel like you’ve just come home. 

Next Episode | South Brisbane

We’re in an empire state of mind every time we step foot into this New York-inspired speakeasy. While it’s easy to find a cocktail you’ll love from the funky list, it’s slightly harder to find the place. Hint: head down Fish Lane and look for a barbershop… 

Brewski | Petrie Terrace

The folk at Brewski live and breathe beer. With over 150 beers on offer from just around the corner and all across the globe, Brewski is where the best brews come to play. 

Sixteen Antlers | CBD

Head to the roof, take in the city surrounds, and sip on some delightful cocktails at Sixteen Antlers! Their tapas plates perfectly complement the cocktails and will satisfy the rumble that’s slowly been building…

Well, aren’t we spoilt for choice!?


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Words by Elizabeth Markwell
- The gourmet who needs a horchata colada.