Off The Beaten Track: Unveiling Brisbane’s Hidden Foodie Haunts

Look and you shall find

By Stamatina Notaras | 16th January 2024

In a city brimming with an abundance of restaurants, bars, and cafes, navigating the entirety of Brisbane’s culinary scene can be a challenging feat. Fear not! From crossing clandestine-looking cold rooms to adventuring through charming narrow alleys, we’ll guide you through a gastronomic adventure that promises to unveil the city’s best-kept secrets.

Get ready to savour the extraordinary flavours concealed within these unassuming facades, revealing the culinary magic that awaits you. It’s time to step off the beaten path and into a world of delectable surprises.

So, without further ado, let’s unveil some Brisbane’s best hidden foodie haunts that deserve a spot on your must-visit list.

By the way, we consider everyone in this list the best of the best! To make finding your next favourite that much easier, we’ve ordered the list alphabetically by suburb and also have filtering tabs for your convenience. Did we miss someone from the list? Let us know here!   Hide the form

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Perspective Dining

Fortitude Valley

Tucked away on Brisbane’s bustling Brunswick Street sits Perspective Dining. The contemporary culinary destination boasts a delectable menu, carefully curated by Head Chef Andrew McCrea, with an enviable wine list to match each dish. Dig into share-style favourites like pork cheek with Moreton Bay prawn, fennel piccalilli, apple or pumpkin with burnt skin, local honey, and lavender. Need something more substantial? They also offer a nine-course offering during summer. 

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Lloyds General Store

Fortitude Valley

Date night coming up? We’ve got you sorted. General store turned cafe, bar, and bistro, Lloyd’s is a slice of Europe in the concrete jungle chaos that is The Valley. The restaurant serves freshly baked treats, coffee, and gourmet sandwiches by day and euro-inspired bites and yummy drinks by night. The drinks menu boasts a selection of beers, wines, spirits, and cocktails to sip and indulge. And if you’re looking for a place to sleep after a boozy night out, you can book the quirky apartment upstairs – talk about convenience! You can also hire it out for private dining events. 

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Komeyui

Spring Hill

One of Melbourne’s best-kept secrets, Komeyui, arrived in Brisbane earlier this year and has been dishing up reimagined Japanese bites ever since. Situated on Spring Hill’s Wharf Street, the restaurant  serves up seasonal dishes like braised pork belly in a soy sauce glaze (one word, yum!), Japanese oven-grilled glacier toothfish, and sashimi. Up at the bar, you can choose between a selection of sake, whisky, cocktails, and wine.

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Shunsai

East Brisbane

Residents of Red Hill will find a hidden gem in Shunsui – Brisbane’s first Omakase Japanese restaurant. The establishment has been cooking authentic Japanese dishes such as grilled eel, prawn potato fritter, donburi bowls, and so much more, for the past five years and has become a favourite for those who are in the know. Now that the secret is out, we have a feeling this restaurant won’t be gracing hidden foodie haunts lists for much longer! 

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Boom Boom Room 

Brisbane City

Located in Brisbane City’s underground is the Boom Boom Room, where the flavours are loud, and the music is louder. The charm and sophistication of this Japanese restaurant and bar offer a Gatsby-inspired setting where you can dine on big and little eats such as miso duck breast with Japanese squash, and twice-cooked pork belly with miso apple and floss furikake while an estimable line-up of sips including tasty cocktails, wines, flights of sake, and rare Japanese Whiskeys flow at the bar. Follow the music, and we’ll meet you there!

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Cordeaux Social Club

West End

Nestled by the river, Cordeaux Social Club transforms from a bustling cafe by day to a quaint bar by night, offering everything you desire in your local neighbourhood hotspot. Boasting quality brew, tasty bistro-style bites, and specialty wines, West End’s newest resident has quickly become a favourite pre-work pit stop and, from Friday to Sunday, a sanctuary for post-work knock-offs with friends. The carefully curated menu features deli-style sandwiches like the smoked beef with gruyere, pickles, and gravy on smoked potato bread, and the mushroom cutlet sandwich paired with hazelnut butter, buffalo mozzarella, and rocket on a seeded sourdough. In the evening, the menu takes Amalfi-inspired notes and plates up charcuterie-style bites, as well as moreish-mouthfuls such as charcoal butter chicken, mortadella served with house pickles, and Coffin Bay oysters with mulberry mignonette. It’s supper club meets siesta session, and it’s where everybody knows your name.

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Exhibition Restaurant 

Brisbane City 

Fittingly named, Exhibition Restaurant offers an immersive experience that caters to all your senses with a six-course, 16-plated degustation. In a time where surprises are a scarcity, revel in Exhibition Restaurant’s ‘no menu’ approach, crafted with the highest quality live seafood and meats, as well as the freshest produce from Queensland’s best sustainable farms. The Japanese-style omakase menu has, in the past, included dishes from king prawns with secret sauce and mung beans, wagyu tartare with rayu oil and sweet potato, and abalone liver parfait with shokupan. If you’re in the mood for an afternoon of drinks and nibbles, Exhibition’s Wine Bar will have you imbibing on caviar bumps, shucked oysters and cured meats, and a top-notch selection of cocktails, sakes, wines and spirits.

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The Nixon Room

Fortitude Valley

The saying goes that behind every closed door, the rest of the world opens up. Well, behind this James Street closed door is Brisbane’s best kept secret – so secretive, in fact, that you need to text to get on the door. Sister restaurant to Essa, The Nixon Room is your concrete jungle escape. Upon arrival, you’re transported to New York’s speakeasy era of the 1920’s with each carefully curated cocktail sip transporting you to a simpler time where all you need is good company, crisp nips, and delectable dishes. Are you looking for a function space to cater your next event? Your search is over. Get in touch with The Nixon Room to see what they can do for you.

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By Stamatina Notaras Caffeinated and chaotic, our resident Greek goddess Stamatina is often heard before she is seen.
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