11 of the Best Unique Dining Experiences Brisbane Has To Offer

Are you stuck in a rut when it comes to eating out in Brisbane? Do you yearn to go somewhere with a bit more personality and a much cooler vibe?

Well fear not food lovers, because there are some unique dining experiences you can enjoy that will transform your culinary adventures.

From cool restaurants with a quirky theme to upscale joints with incredible views and sensational fusion menus, here are 11 of the best places for you to get your next meal.

1. Happy Boy

You will be a happy boy or happy girl if you enjoy a Chinese feast at this fabulous Chinese restaurant and wine bar in the Fortitude Valley.

Since opening its doors in 2014, this venue has gained immense popularity among foodies for its innovative fusion of authentic Chinese cuisine. Its menu features a sumptuous range of dishes that include everything from crispy chicken wings and prawn and pork potstickers to salt and pepper quail eggs.

To complement its wonderful cuisine, the venue also has a very impressive, curated wine selection that features a range of labels from the Australian company, Spoken Wine.

Set within a cool and trendy space on East Street, the restaurant has just enough seating to ensure you won’t have to wait too long to eat, without creating a soulless vibe. If you get a chance, try to dine out on the al fresco deck, which is illuminated with fairy-lit trees. It will take your dining experience to the next level.

Address: Under fairy-lit trees, East Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006

Phone: 0413 246 890

Website: https://www.happyboy.com.au/

Hours: Tues – Sun 11:30 am 2 pm & 5:30pm – 8:30 pm

2. GOMA Farm-to-table Restaurant

If you are a fan of modern art and upscale cuisine, the Goma Restaurant of Modern Art is somewhere you should make a reservation at.

Situated in South Bank, this refined venue combines to two perfectly. Its farm-to-table restaurant boasts a contemporary and chic space that places a strong emphasis on locally sourced produce.

Diners have the option of choosing from various large or small plates whose presentation is in keeping with the artistic theme for which the gallery is known.

Showcasing the best in locally sourced produce from around the state of Queensland, Executive Chef

Aaron Holt has also created an exceptional two and three course menu, which you can enjoy with a robust selection of wines from the Sunshine State and wider Australia.

Address: Gallery of Modern Art, Stanley Place, South Brisbane QLD 4101

Phone: 07 3842 9916

Website: https://www.qagoma.qld.gov.au/visit/eat-and-drink/

Hours: Thur – Sun: 11:30am – 3pm

3. Hôntô

Located on Alden Street, Hôntô Restaurant is one of the best Japanese restaurants in Brisbane for those who want a more distinctive dining experience.

Set within an interior that features stunning design elements like chandeliers and charred and blackened wood panelling, the menu here offers a modern twist on Japanese gastronomy.

Using only the best ingredients they can source locally, the venue accommodates a raw bar and offers both an a la carte and banquet menu. Popular dishes on the a la carte menu include their Pork Katsu Cutlet, Wagyu Beef Tartare and Tuna Tataki.

As well as their meals, Hôntô serves a wide range of sake, sustainable wines from independent Aussie producers and rare Japanese whiskies.

Address: Alden Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006

Phone: 07 3193 7392

Website: https://honto.com.au/

Hours: Sun – Thurs 5 – 9:30pm, Fri – Sat 5 – 10pm

4. Otto Ristorante

OTTO Ristorante is a well-known Italian fine dining destination that is designed to resemble a boat house.

Situated on Southbank’s River Quay, it combines the sensational flavours of Italy with best of Australian ingredients to create one of Brisbane’s most unique culinary experiences.

Offering impeccable service and an unparalleled waterfront location, reservations are a must here. However, once you manage to procure a table you will be able to enjoy dishes like Crudo di Pesce and their signature Spaghettini which comes with a delicious Champagne lobster that will make you feel like royalty.

If you are looking to impress a date or want to celebrate a notable occasion, this is a tremendous place to go.

Address: Shop 1, River Quay, Sidon Street, QLD 4101

Phone 07 3835 2888

Website: https://ottoristorante.com.au/brisbane/

Hours: Wed – Sun 12 pm – 9 pm

5. Patina at Customs House

In the late 1800s, Customs House was many people’s first experience of Brisbane. Now it is a place where many people go for a fantastic dining experience – specifically at Patina.

Aside from its stunning location, Patina at Customs House is notable for its strong commitment to championing the philosophy of paddock-to-plate. It also has an upscale ambience that sets it apart from other fine dining venues in Queensland’s capital city.

The centrepiece of the main dining room is a stunning light installation which instantly captures your attention. However, what will resonate long after you have dined here is the quality of the food on offer.

Emphasising locally sourced ingredients in all its dishes, you are likely to see plenty of diners enjoying chargrilled ocean king prawns and OP Rib, sourced from the Darling Downs with Chimichurri.

If you are a fan of mushrooms, you’ll also want to try one of their dishes that showcase this vegetable – which they grow in their on-site cellar to maximise its quality and freshness.

Address: Customs House, 399 Queen Street, Brisbane City QLD 4000

Phone: 07 3365 8921

Website: https://www.patinacustomshouse.com.au/

Hours: Tues – Fri 12 pm – 9:30 pm, Sat 12 pm – 10 pm, Sun 12 pm – 9 pm

6. Takashiya

If you don’t mind Omakase, the Japanese tradition of entrusting the chef to choose your meal, then you should put your faith into the menu at Takashiya.

Situated on South Bank, within the Emporium Hotel, the restaurant is run by Chef Takashi Nami, a sushi master who has refined his artisanal craft over more than four decades.

At the venue you can enjoy one of three distinct menus. Each one has been thoughtfully created to highlight the quality of the local seafood and includes imported ingredients that are rare among other restaurants. They also champion Chef Takashi’s incredible skills with a knife.

This is the place to come when you are feeling hungry as these menus feature 15-, 16- and 19-course which range in levels of decadence and are a tip of the hat to the chef’s vision and creativity.

The venue has a private and cosy dining area which can only seat a dozen guests. This makes for a superb dining experience as you can watch the master at work as he creates each nigiri right in front of you.

Address: Shop T03 Emporium Hotel, 267 Grey Street, South Brisbane QLD 4101

Website: https://www.takashiya.com.au/

Phone: 07 888 840

Hours: Mon 5 pm – 10 pm, Thurs 5pm – 10 pm, Fri – Sun 12 pm – 3 pm and 5 pm – 10 pm

7. The Prawnster

Fancy dining on a boat? Well that is exactly what you can do at The Prawnster – a one-of-a-kind seafood restaurant located on vintage prawn trawlers along the beautiful Brisbane River.

Offering a menu that champions fresh catches like Moreton Bay Bugs, oysters, seasonal mud crabs, prawns and salmon, there is no better place to get fresh seafood in the city.

Guests can choose to eat al fresco style on their covered pontoon or inside the vessel. Either way, you’ll enjoy tremendous river views, terrific food and a nice selection of beers and wines.

Address: Berth B1, Dockside Marina, 44 Ferry Street, Kangaroo Point QLD 4169

Contact via: [email protected]

Website: https://theprawnster.com.au/

Hours: Mon – Wed 5pm – 9 pm, Thurs – Sun 12pm – 9 pm

8. ZA ZA TA Bar and Kitchen

ZA ZA TA Bar and Kitchen is a vegetarian restaurant and bar located in the heart of Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley. They offer a menu of Middle Eastern flavours in a setting that combines the allure of Marrakesh with a touch of the Raffles Hotel and Alhambra Palace.

Diners can start their experience at the colonial-inspired bar, where they can sip on a selection of specialist wines, Mediterranean-style gins and handpicked colonial rums.

When it’s time to eat, they can enjoy a menu that draws inspiration from the flavours of Tel Aviv, including the likes of house lamb bacon, yellow fin tuna and fried goats cheese pretzel.

Make sure you leave room for dessert too, as there are several excellent options to choose from, such as mahalabi and date pudding that will round your meal off perfectly.

Address: 1000 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006

Website: https://ovolohotels.com/ovolo/thevalley/eat/zazata/

Phone: 07 3253 6932

Hours: Tues – Sat 5:30pm – 9 pm

9. Restaurant Dan Arnold

If you enjoy food cooked by highly decorated chefs then you’ll want to make a point of visiting Restaurant Dan Arnold.

It is an eponymous venue run by a Brisbane born culinary genius who hone his gastronomic excellent at the internationally acclaimed L’Esperance in Saint-Père, France, (which has achieved two Michelin stars).

You will find it in the Alex Perry Hotel and Apartments on Ann Street within the Fortitude Valley in an elegant venue that features an open kitchen that perfectly fuses creativity and nature.

The menu here is seasonal, so it changes on a regular basis. However, the standard of food you are presented with is consistently excellent.

Cheese lovers will enjoy the venue’s signature cheese trolley which offers some of the best selection you will find in Brisbane. Enjoy them with a perfectly paired glass of red or white to maximise your gastronomic experience.

Address: 10/959 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006

Website: https://www.restaurantdanarnold.com/

Phone: 07 3189 2735

Hours: Wed – Thur 6 pm – 12 am, Fri 12 pm – 12 am, Sat 6 pm – 12 am

10. Alchemy Restaurant and Bar

Presenting spectacular views of the Story Bridge and Brisbane River and an elegant decor whose centrepiece is a stunning Murano glass chandelier, the Alchemy Restaurant and Bar is a fabulous place to enjoy an upscale meal.

Their menu reveals a range of intriguing dishes which are made with locally-sourced produce, defined by the texture and flavour, and expertly paired with a delicious wine.

The Sicilian pork salami, which comes with cornichons and dark chocolate is a good way to kick off any meal, while the Wagyu carpaccio, spiced walnuts and truffle paste is also an excellent option.

For your main meal, the Grimaud NSW duck breast is always a winner. It comes with a delicious confit duck pastry, parsnip puree, spiced beetroot, and a delightful coffee chocolate foam.

Whatever you choose to eat, you’ll enjoy fantastic service and a relaxed ambience in one of the best restaurants in Brisbane.

Address: 175 Eagle Street, Brisbane City QLD 4000

Phone: 07 3229 3175

Website: https://www.alchemyrestaurant.com.au/

Hours: Tues, Thurs & Fri: 12 pm – 3 pm, 5:30 pm – 11 pm, Wed 12 pm – 2 pm, 5:30 pm – 11 pm, Sat 5:30 pm – 10 pm

11. e’cco Bistro

Last, but not least, is E’cco Bistro, which has been a stalwart in Newstead for almost 20 years.

This is a terrific place to come when you have a group of diners who fancy something a little bit different, as the menu offers plenty of variety. Think black cardamom spiced lamb, potato gnocchi and black mussel escabeche, all of which are beautifully presented and bursting with flavour.

Aside from the food menu, the bistro rocks a sophisticated look that includes brick and limestone

walls and floors, a kitchen benchtop and a marble bar, that combines to make it one of the coolest venues in town.

Address: Shop 8/63 Skyring Terrace, Newstead QLD 4006

Website: https://eccobistro.com.au/

Phone: 07 3831 8344

Hours: Wed & Thurs 6pm – 10.30 pm, Fri & Sat 12 pm – 2:30 pm, 6 pm – 10.30 pm