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Brisbane, Australia: 7 must-try restaurants

By Faye Bradley 20 October 2020

Header image courtesy of Hello Please (via Facebook)

Queensland’s riverside town, Brisbane, offers an abundance of eateries to cater to every palette. The city is clustered in its South Bank precinct, surrounded by cultural monuments including Queensland Gallery of Modern Art and the Brisbane Botanic Gardens. The local food scene stretches from Fortitude Valley and New Farm, to downtown Brissy, so you’ll never be lacking options. From French artful dining to casual pizza joints, the region taps into different cuisines, for discerning diners to indulge in the finer things in life. Set to impress, here are Brisbane’s best restaurants right now.

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Fortitude Valley’s Joy is a 10-seat chef’s table affair, which shares the joys of gourmet dining with a personalised approach. Run by two chef owners, Tim and Sarah Scott, the culinary hideaway delivers an intimate experience, which eliminates the kitchen-dining room separation. The food has distinct Japanese and Nordic influences, and guests can choose the eight-dishes course or the five-dishes course (or a la carte). Pair the meal with an Australian or European wine—from the menu curated by chef’s sommelier friend, Russ Berry.

Joy, Shop 7/690 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006, Australia | (+61) 412 425 626

Julius Pizzeria

Expect to line up for your Italian fix at Julius Pizzeria—but the queue is well worth it. The Fish Lane location welcomes diners to tuck into its selection of wood-fired pizzas, with flavours ranging from truffle sprinkles to pan-fried pancetta. Grab a slice of the pizza goodness, and if you’re coming with a crowd, order a few to share, with a bowl of fresh pasta—the pappardelle duck and tomato ragu in a must.

Julius Pizzeria, 77 Grey Street, South Brisbane QLD 4101, Australia | (+61) 7 3844 2655


Whisking you away to the Greek islands, Hellenika is a poolside haven, serving traditional Greek cuisine with a modern update. Owner Simon Gloftis moved from northern Greece to the Gold Coast over ten years ago, bringing his culinary expertise with him, and serving Aussies with delectable Mediterranean bites. Located in The Calile Hotel, the restaurant features an impressive wine list of over 500 variations, and its food menu commits to obtaining fresh produce in its ingredients. Popular dishes include the slow-cooked lamb and zucchini chips for sharing.

Hellenika, Level 1/48 James Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006, Australia | (+61) 7 3252 2060

Keep scrolling for the rest of the list 👇

Dan Arnold

Brisbane-born chef Dan Arnold has quite an impressive background. Having spent a year under chef Marc Meneau at L’Espérance, Arnold also holds awards from worldwide culinary competitions. Returning to Australia with a family, he opened his own restaurant, which is named after himself, beneath the Alex Perry Hotel & Apartments on Ann Street. Offering three- and five-course menus (which change frequently), the eatery specialises in what chef does best—French cuisine. What’s more, the chic interiors lend a fine-dining vibe, featuring open-glass windows and an open kitchen to gaze into.

Dan Arnold, 10/959 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006, Australia | (+61) 7 3189 2735

Hello Please

Craving some Vietnamese pecking dishes? Hello Please has you sorted with mounds of spring rolls, baos, and coconut curries. The shared bench tables are reminiscent of outdoor Vietnamese stalls, which also encourage socialising with locals, and meeting new people. It’s located beneath a carpark, which gives it a cool vibe, and the heavy emphasis on retro is made prominent from its neon lights and energetic music.

Hello Please, 10 Fish Lane, South Brisbane QLD 4101, Australia | (+61) 411 526 886

E’cco Bistro

Headed by celebrity chef Philip Johnson, E’cco Bistro is a fine dining restaurant specialising in modern Australian cuisine, and has been doing it for over two decades. The eatery is separated into two distinct spaces—the bistro and the outdoor dining area. Make the most of a crisp day out by dining alfresco, and to perhaps catch the sunset.

E’cco Bistro, Shop 8/63 Skyring Terrace, Newstead QLD 4006, Australia | (+61) 7 3831 8344

Keep scrolling for the rest of the list 👇

Yoko Dining

Inspired by Tokyo’s bustling eateries and late-night karaoke spots, Yoko Dining is Jonathan Barthelmess’ izakaya interpretation, brought all the way to Brisbane. Situated at the Howard Smith Wharves, a heritage-listed space, the venue boasts a 60s palette interior, with Japanese tunes in the background, to add to the ambience. Try the okra tempura, pork katsu steamed buns, and premium wagyu, from the menu. And what’s an izakaya experience without a few swigs of sake throughout the meal?

Yoko Dining, Howard Smith Wharves 2, 5 Boundary St, Brisbane City QLD 4000, Australia | (+61) 7 3236 6582

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Faye Bradley


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.