The Brisbane breakfast bucket list
Forget sky diving, climbing Everest and learning another language–our bucket list involves eating our way...
We came, we saw, we hunkered down and ate non-stop to give you the best non-definitive, but super comprehensive bucket list of Brisbane’s top restaurants!
Grab the chamomile and settle in, Brisbane – you’ll be here for a while. Read below to discover the top restaurants in Brisbane…
Brisbane’s Top Restaurants: Gourmand favourites
With restaurants in West End, Fortitude Valley and Toowong, this is Japanese but not as you know it. Taking the concept of yakitori (Japanese chicken skewers) and running with it, the team at Bird’s Nest are masters of all things sticky!
Beccofino is one of the OGs of Brisbane’s pizza scene. This Italian spot is blazing the trail, one delightful wood-fired pizza after another. We suggest grabbing a slice of their Di mare, topped with mozzarella, local tiger prawns, calamari, zucchini, chilli, capers and lemon.
It’s a mouthful (and a delicious one at that) to say, but Greca’s taramasalata is a notch above the rest. Just one bite and you’ll be smashing plates of it as you take in their unbeatable riverside views.
Ready to oodle over the noodles at Hai Hai? This ramen hotspot has us falling in love with their delicious tonkotsu with thin straight noodles and topped with egg, nori, negi, black garlic oil, and char siu pork.
You can chu-chu ka-chu your way through a million of Chu the Phat’s freshly-steamed duck buns and still be begging for more. They’re just that ducking good.
Wine + Cheese = Love. That’s all the maths we need, and it completely represents everything Mr Chester Wine Bar is about. Particularly delightful for the senses is the Fungi, a shroomy pizza topped with smoked mozzarella, mixed mushrooms, parmesan and truffle oil.
It’s authentic yum cha in the heart of Sunnybank, so you know it’s going to be lit. Second only to mindlessly watching critters in the fish tanks living their best life is this icon’s delicate siu mai – little pieces of serenity amongst the otherwise hectic Sunday lunch crowds.
Oh to be young, wild, and Libertine. Their French-Vietnamese inspired menu delights all the senses, with their signature Moreton Bay bug toast an absolute must-try.
For stacks on stacks on deck and the best ‘90s playlist you ever did hear, move to the beat and make your way to Hello Please. Special mention goes to their Chinese bolognese, with rice dumpling, chilli oil, and salted egg – a little different from Nonna’s classic.
Joining the rank of Aussie legends alongside Egg Boy is Happy Boy, where the food will leave you smiling (and going back for seconds). Opt for their half roast duck selection or go full indulgence with their crispy pork belly to dine the night away, and sip on some stunning Aussie wines while you’re at it!
Caesar the day at Julius Pizzeria, nestled in the heart of Fish Lane! Always leave room for the gooey goodness that is their Tartufo pizza, piled with melted mozzarella, smoked bacon, portobello mushrooms, stracchino, and truffle paste.
Get him to Greek in this South Brisbane restaurant and see the kitchen Russell up some seriously good pork belly baklava, plated up with pistachios, dates, pork crackling and date mustard mastiha sauce.
Always a winner in Brisbane’s ramen game is Ramen Champion. Be a champ yourself and slurp up the spicy champion ramen, a fiery concoction of minced pork, vegetables, and home-made spicy sauce.
Didn’t know cloud nine existed until we walked into Brisbane’s answer to Emerald City and had a taste of Greenglass’ Gratin Dauphinois – essentially a fancy French potato bake. Be warned, though, the menu changes often!
We know you know all a-bao New Shanghai’s scrumptious dumplings, but ever given a thought to their gorgeous rainbow beef? A kaleidoscope of flavour awaits you in this sweet and sour crispy beef creation.
Thanks to its location in the Powerhouse, it’s no wonder the meals at Bar Alto always pack a punch. Grab the squad and get dirty in a kilo or two of Cozze – mussels with chilli, garlic, white wine, tomato and grilled ciabatta.
This plant-based eatery is the perfect place to veg, preferably with their confit Jerusalem artichoke with cherry tomatoes, shallots, and pickled herb salad.
Despite the relaxed atmosphere, the food at this southside spot is in a league of its own. When the clock strikes dinner time, peep the wasabi prawns with mango and watermelon salad, or the aromatic duck curry with sweet potato and lychee.
We’ve officially set up camp in front of this suburban delight, hanging out for their gnocchi with pumpkin, nduja and pecorino.
You are what you eat, and we came to eat nothing but the chonkiest dumplings. Straight from bamboo basket to mouth are the delicious, plump and flavourful dumplings, handmade before your very eyes and available fried, poached or steamed with an array of delightful fillings.
Brisbane, you don’t need no man – but you do need the butter naan at A Night in India. One to ghee up next time you’re in Toowong, pair this delicious treat with any of their massamans, biryanis, and vindaloos to take your tastebuds on a magic carpet ride.
Get to Arlette’s for a meal brimming with zingy flavour. Don’t even get us started on their three-taste belly – crackling pork belly served with Vietnamese fish sauce, chilli caramel and chilli sauce. We’ve pigged out here so often that the pork’s not the only one with a belly these days…
This suburban eatery has nothing to Prova, consistently whipping up goodies like the Zucca pizza topped pumpkin cream, basil, smoked mozzarella, pancetta, and parmesan, or the cinnamon doughnuts with caramel, peanuts, vanilla ice cream, and Nutella.
We won’t Troy with you Brisbane – prepare to demolish some of the best mains and steaks, all served with rosemary salted shoestring fries, bearnaise, and caramelised onion jus.
Kick uber to the kerb and get a bang for your buck at Sichuan Bang Bang, where nothing packs a punch like their kung pao chicken. It’d be rude not to order their speciality peking duk pancakes, and throw in some crispy eggplant chips for good measure…
One Fish Two Fish has hella tasty gourmand options like battered cod, fries and salad, and the quarter flounder burger, but also has us pulling up our fancy pants as we dive into their seafood risotto of prawns, mussels, cod, tomato and dry vermouth!
Brisbane’s Top Restaurants: Gourmet favourites
A xiao of hands for how many people love the baos at Little Valley would have the whole of Brisbane up in the air. Oh and another warning for you – last time we tried their truffle potato spring rolls, we smashed so many we had to unbutton our jeans.
Duck, duck, bistro. Be a deer, and head to this Auchenflower restaurant to try the sous vide duck breast with blue cheese, pear, and walnut, and revel in this flavour marriage that was undoubtedly made in heaven.
Gnocch, gnocch, Newstead’s best gnocchi is here! Echoed all across Brisbane is the e’cco bistro famed potato gnocchi, doused in gorgonzola, spinach, and a sprinkle of pine nuts for crunch. This is one Brissie dining stalwart you just can’t miss.
Avenging the Great Emu War of 1932 one tartare at a time is Detour in Woolloongabba. Stray from the usual and discover new tastes in their innovatively inviting emu tartare with burnt shallot, chilli, and yolk.
Everyone’s taking a shine to Patina, and how could you not? Watch our eyes gleam over their Darling Downs ribs, dressed to kill in delectable chimichurri sauce.
Fly me to La Lune. For an out-of-this-world wine and dine experience, look no further than this European wine bar nestled in the heart of Fish Lane. We recommend digging into their tasting menu with paired wines, and let the food and wine teams work their magic.
Dock in at Wilson’s Boathouse for a seaside seafood feast. Locals point to this Manly restaurant’s BBQ Moreton Bay bugs as reigning supreme – served with garlic butter, broccolini and quinoa salad.
Are you bready for this? Since day one, Gauge’s avant-garde black garlic bread, made even more perfect with burnt vanilla and brown butter on the side, has been a post-dinner winner.
Head honcho Honto is vying for the top spot in Brisbane’s Japanese foodie scene with their spectacular lobster katsu sandos, with salted cabbage and dill slaw, and tempura prawns with jalapeño mayo, pickled cucumber and bao buns.
Woolloongabba’s classy 1889 Enoteca shows that some dishes are timeless. They knock pasta out of the ballpark with their delicious pappardelle with braised pork and beef, tomato sugo, and authentic Parmigiano Reggiano imported straight from Italia.
Brisbane’s best bouillabaisse. Yep, we said it. Local seafood simmered in Marseille stock with tomato, fennel, saffron, rouille and croutons – taste it and you’ll sea what we mean.
Flaming galah! Fly into the luxurious Woolloongabba restaurant Corella for modern Australian dining experience like no other. Pair your feast with any of their fifty gorgeous bottles of wine and you’re good to go!
Ott oh – we’re back again. Nothing can keep us away from Otto restaurant’s signature ravioli, stuffed with Moreton Bay blue swimmer crab, mascarpone, and accompanied by black garlic crema.
Gotta get back to Black. If, like us, you’re a mad cow lover, you can’t miss their luxuriously indulgent Angus Tomahawk, boasting a marble score of 3+ and served with unbeatable wagyu fat roasted potatoes, rosemary, and garlic.
We love a little Donna in the summer… autumn, winter, and spring! To ensure you don’t miss out on Donna’s best, get the whole table on board and get amongst the banquet options. Trust us!
At Bacchus, it’s almost impossible to choose which multi-course option to pick, but our personal favourite is the dessert degustation. Skip dinner and go straight to dessert so you can get through four courses of sweets – which includes a food baby, a sugar high and a food coma – in that order.
At Gambaro, when you sea food you’re gonna wanna eat it! Their deluxe Queensland mud crab comes plated with your choice of lemon and thyme, chilli and white wine, or smoked tomato butter and is insanely tasty.
A winery? In the city? You better believe the wine is good and the food is too! Our current top pick from their ever-changing menu is mutton, with organic Mallow mutton with grilled squash, baby potatoes, goat’s curd, and fermented zucchini dressing, best enjoyed with one of their many great wines poured straight from the barrel.
The concise menu is bursting at the seams with flavour, with combinations you’ve never heard of, but are now dying to try. From the gingerbread cauliflower with carrot jam and pancetta, to the “cheesecake gone Rouge” with rice bubbles and raspberry sorbet, this spot will have you scratching your head AND rubbing your tummy.
Enjoy fine China and Wu the crowds at Madame Wu, where their decadent piju yu snapper, made Guilin-style in Tsingtao beer is always a show-stopping fave.
One of James Street’s very best, sAme sAme takes Thai fare to a whole nother level, using top quality ingredients and staying true to traditional Thai flavours. You can’t go wrong ordering a curry or two, like their red curry of angus beef cheek, crispy shallots, lime leaf, and potato and pork dumplings.
Brisbane’s Top Restaurants: Old-school favourites
Dare we declare this the best Peking duck in all Brisbane? Better go and find out! Billy’s crispy take on this Beijing favourite tastes heavenly on its own or wrapped up in shallot crepes, followed by the restaurant’s equally famous deep-fried ice cream.
Pack up the van and bring the whole family to Lefkas Tavern for one big, fat, Greek feast! Special attention must go to this restaurant’s moussaka that layers pork and beef mince with eggplant and potato stacked with creamy bechamel sauce.
Hitting you right in the Seoul is this Korean bistro’s famous chicken wings, available in an array of flavours, and served all-you-can-eat. Chuck in some of their equally good kimchi fries and you’ll be in heaven, and maybe a food coma.
Ready to tuck into some Turk? Look no further than the Mediterranean delights available at West End’s Caravanserai! Fill your table with all the meze in the world, but make sure to leave room for turkish delight later!
Have a quail of a time at this long-term Wickham street favourite, chock-a-block filled with great finds such as the deep-fried quail seasoned with good ol’ salt and pepper. Enjoy!
Ooh la La Quinta! This Bulimba Mexican restaurant has us doing the salsa over their signature chunky beef chilli, simmered with prime beef chunks, tomatoes, chilli, spice, and served with fluffy flour tortillas and a dollop of sour cream.
Alcohol-soaked pasta? Verve is on the verge of something here… Kick back with their drool-worthy spinach and ricotta tortellini, cooked in brandy for that extra kick, and served with roasted pine nuts, sun blushed tomatoes, and baby spinach, and explore their fab collection of ciders while you’re there!
So, what’s for dinner?