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Brisbane, Australia: A guide to the best bars in town

By Faye Bradley 23 September 2020

Header image courtesy of Mr Percival’s

Brisbane is home to some of the most treasured things in life—sandy beaches, a comfortably warm climate, and an abundance of bars, restaurants, and nightlife. Whether you’re a total newbie in the city or a longtime local, there’s always a fresh new spot to try in this bustling town. From slick rooftops to intimate wine bars, here are the best bars in Brisbane right now to get your boozy night on.

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Death and Taxes

Tucked away on Brisbane’s oldest laneway, Burnett Lane, Death and Taxes invites you into an old-fashioned, leather booth-decked venue, and offers some of the best cocktails in the city. Its extensive menu features only the most premium quality drinks for the discerning drinker, with options ranging from premium gin to a refreshing mixer. The bar is owned by the same brainchild (Martin Lange) behind Savile Row, Finney Isles, and West End’s Cobbler, so you know you can trust them for all things whiskey, although it’s also very much cocktail-driven. It’s got a slightly morbid design theme, being death, and starts from the grim reaper mural pointing you to the bar. But all is well, for once you enter, the cool, 1920s-style interiors will have you feeling welcomed in the dark, moody ambience. Head here for a cool drink or two, or make a full night out of it.

Death and Taxes, 36 Burnett Lane, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia | (+61) 428 964 197

Cobbler

In Brisbane’s West End, the stylish Cobbler bar serves some of the finest whiskeys in the region—a whole 300+ of them, in fact. Cobbler has a New York loft kind of vibe, with its high ceilings, open-brick walls, and hanging bicycle décor. Expect hand-cut ice blocks in your drinks, curated by the experienced, professional bartenders. But it’s not just encouraged for the whiskey enthusiasts to swing by—the cocktails and wines are just as popular here. What’s even better about coming here with friends, is that the bar allows BYO for food and snacks, from home or from its surrounding restaurants. Round up some friends and pick up from your favourite restaurant—drinks and snacks galore.

Cobbler, 7 Browning Street, West End QLD 4101, Australia | (+61) 455 686 968

Brisbane Brewing Co

Beer enthusiasts unite at Brisbane Brewing Co., a bar perched on West End. The intimate space features fresh brews—eight of which are their own—and you’ll be met with ornate iron gates at the entry. Brisbane Brewing Co. interiors are pared back, showcasing exposed brick and black and white floor tiles, with ambient, soft lighting. The bar also features a food menu, with options ranging from beef brisket to delicatessen nibbles, pairing perfectly with a cold, creamy beer.

Brisbane Brewing Co., 124 Boundary Street, West End QLD 4101, Australia | (+61) 7 3891 1011

Keep scrolling for the rest of the list 👇

By Jennifer Johnston 6 December 2019
By Gwen Luscombe 27 December 2019

The Gresham

Brisbane’s heritage-listed The Gresham is located in the city and specialises in premium cocktails, whiskeys, rums, and wines to cater for different palettes. Steeped in history, the bar offers a unique feat, maintaining the building’s architecture and character, and taking a progressive approach to drinks and service. All clientele are welcome, no matter what you wear—as the bar says, it’s got an “attitude policy, not a dress policy”. Learn more about the background of the venue, and come here with a group for an unforgettable experience.

The Gresham, 308 Queen Street, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia | (+61) 437 360 158

Fitz + Potts

The bright, retro Fitz + Potts is one of Brisbane’s favourite hangout spots. Overlooking Nundah’s Sandgate Road, the bar specialises in Australian beers, wines, and spirits, with a selection of vegan-friendly snacks. The aesthetic is, some could say, funky—perhaps it’s the antique tables with the fringed lamps and frosted glass windows, against the popping colours of the furniture. Either way, plenty of Aussies and tourists come here to try the vibe. There’s even a roof garden with a 1970s theme to lighten the mood.

Fitz + Potts, Upstairs, 1180 Sandgate Road, Nundah QLD 4012, Australia

Super Whatnot

Perched within Brisbane’s CBD, Super Whatnot is a laneway favourite, where hipsters meet suits. Its welcoming atmosphere invites guests from all over to try the beers, cocktails, and wines, in an intimate environment, which will never feel too crowded thanks to its award-winning design. The best time to go is when the in-house DJ is playing—expect soul music and hip hop to tune into for the night, whilst sipping on a Cuban Jungle. Snacks are also available.

Super Whatnot, 48 Burnett Lane, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia | (+61) 7 3210 2343

Mr Percival’s

Brisbane’s overwater bar is nestled just under Story Bridge, meaning you can make the most of the stunning views which come with its location. Grab a drink here—definitely a cocktail—whilst watching the sunset, and continue the evening with a few seafood bites from the food menu. The venue is well-lit and decked in contemporary interiors to promote a stylish atmosphere.

Mr Percival’s, 5 Boundary Street, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia | (+61) 7 3188 9090

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Faye Bradley

Travel writer

Faye Bradley is a freelance writer based in Hong Kong, covering topics in travel, wellness, F&B, and the arts. As the editor and business development executive for Cha Siu Papers Times and Compare Retreats, Faye has experience in writing predominantly about luxury travel and well-being. With a keen eye for finding hidden gems, exploring new destinations, and tasting best-of-the-best cuisines, she continues to pursue her love for writing about travel and visiting remote lands. You can find her by the pool with a good book and a mojito in hand.

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