Brisbane has a huge variety of dining options, ranging from award-wining restaurants to “hole in the wall” type eateries.
Self-proclaimed as “famous for food”, Eagle Street Pier is the CBD’s go-to for dining and entertainment. Owned and operated by celebrity chef Matt Moran, ARIA is one of the pier’s most talked about restaurants; famed for fine-dining and expansive views of the Brisbane River. A popular social hotspot, Jade Buddha offers a great casual dining experience; serving local produce (try the Reef and Beef) accompanied by 180 degree waterfront views.
Change pace and vistas, take a trip across the river to South Bank’s newest dining precinct, River Quay. Assuming pride of place in the contemporary riverfront development, Stokehouse celebrates stunning views with Mediterranean-inspired dishes. For a more laid-back vibe, follow the riverside boardwalk to Grey and Little Stanley streets – South Bank’s most tried and tested setting for casual dining. Dishing up large authentic Turkish share platters Ahmet's is a great choice for large groups. Ginga’s two sushi restaurants (on Grey and Little Stanley) are touted to be amongst the best that Brisbane has to offer. While The Bistro and The Café at QPAC serve mood-satisfying options, just seconds away from all the action of the theatre.
Amidst all the activity of Fortitude Valley sits Chinatown; an exotic mix of Chinese supermarkets, Yum Cha buffets and Asian restaurants. Green Tea in the centre of Chinatown Mall is one of the area’s most popular restaurants, serving modern Asian dishes with a social ambience. At the bottom of the mall is another local haunt, The Vietnamese – a subtle space specialising in authentic Vietnamese and Chinese favourites. Amongst the neon lights of the Wickham Street strip, no-frills Chinese restaurant, Super Bowl is a long-standing institution with friendly service, a lively atmosphere and generous servings.
A quick stroll away from the Valley Entertainment Precinct, James Street is renowned as Brisbane’s trendiest street; littered with a number of fashionable eateries, bars and boutiques. Friday nights are always busy at Cru Bar and Cellar, where an award winning wine bar, a wine store and a restaurant are housed under one roof. Press adds a different aspect to the precinct, with a cool 12 square metres "designer hut" and rooftop garden, serving quick coffee, breakfast and lunch. Purveyor of fresh produce and gourmet eats, James Street Market is the area’s headliner, offering a unique urban food retail experience in a luxurious ‘supermarket’ set up.
Brisbane may not be Milan or Paris, but it certainly isn’t a shrinking violet when it comes to fashion either. Opportunities to max the credit card can be found within the city and the suburbs, with boutiques and big businesses littered all throughout the region.
Brisbane’s premier shopping destination lies in the heart of the CBD, along Queen Street Mall. From Chanel to The Cloakroom, Alannah Hill to Adidas, and Mimco to Tiffany & Co, Brisbane City hosts an unparalleled mix of local, national and international labels and flagship stores – populating over 700 retail spaces. To experience the best the city has to offer, take to foot and explore the mall’s impressive shopping centres. High-end fashion, local retail heroes, sport giants and leading department stores can be found in Queen Plaza, Broadway on the Mall, Wintergarden and The Myer Centre.
Where the city focuses on the lavish and luxurious, Fortitude Valley is home to the edgy and chic – a hipster hangout, with countless on-trend retailers. Ann Street, in the centre of the Valley, houses an eclectic array of unique boutiques and flagship stores. Blonde Venus has long been a go-to for cutting-edge designers and design aspirants. The Outpost is also a trendsetter’s favourite, carrying a well edited collection of independent brands/products by artists and designers from around the globe. While Australian fashion darling, Akira Isogawa flaunts his skilled craftsmanship next to some of the city’s most active gentleman and night clubs.
A short stroll from Ann Street, still within the Valley, is James Street – a lively hive of designer boutiques and fashionable eateries. James Street is Brisbane’s leading destination for boutique shopping. On James Street Australia’s most celebrated designers, like Camilla, Ksubi, Easton Pearson and Sass & Bide sit side-by-side with art galleries and niche home ware and furniture merchants.
For the best in suburban shopping, Indooroopilly, Chermside, Carindale and Garden City all house major Westfield centres – one stop destinations for boutique and chain stores alongside food and beauty outlets. Paddington is also a go-to for retail therapy, having earned a name as Brisbane’s thrift store Mecca. Vintage stores and retro boutiques, line Latrobe Terrace stocking everything from apparel to jewellery and furniture to accessories.