Good Food Month is returning to Brisbane this July, bringing some of Australia’s biggest names with it. Shining a light on home-grown talent, exceptional produce and the power of culinary collaborations for the eighth year running, Brisbane Good Food Month tickets are on sale now via their website.
Here’s a roundup of all the Brisbane Good Food Month Events.
Date: Sunday, July 25 Time: 12.30pm, 1pm, 6.30pm and 7pm sittings Cost: $120 pp She’s back, Brisbane! Alanna Sapwell, Queensland native and one of the most celebrated chefs in the country, is returning to home soil with her incredibly successful pop-up restaurant, Esmay: having toured the country with Good Food Month for the past year, with every single event selling out in a flash. This will be Esmay’s fifth pop-up and what better place to have it than at Brisbane’s iconic pub, the 1864 grade edifice The Alliance Hotel. Alanna unearths what’s local and showcases the seasonal and regional treasures from nearby farms and waters. Her dishes not only reflect the landscape, but there’s an element of comfort cooking in everything she does. Alanna’s food is best enjoyed with family and friends- her style is informal, heart-warming yet innovative. So what better way to set the scene than a classic old pub experience – and no one does that better than The Alliance Hotel. How to book: Buy tickets here.
Date: Monday, July 26 Time: 5.30pm, 6.00pm, 8.00pm, 8.30pm sittings Cost: $170pp Although having only opened in January, chef Ben Williamson’s Agnes has already heated up Brisbane’s dining scene with its flame-fuelled kitchen. Good Food Month is turning up the temperature even more by inviting Melbourne’s master of fire, Dave Verheul of hatted Melbourne masterpiece, Embla, up for one special smoke-kissed evening. Embla is one of the most celebrated restaurants in the country: it won the Good Food Guide Best New Restaurant (2017), it has steadily maintained one chef’s hat, and it is currently ranked Number 8 Australia’s Top Restaurants. How to book: Buy tickets here.
Date: Sunday, July 18 Time: 12.30pm & 12.40pm sittings Cost: $150 Louis Tikaram is a chef who understands the value of nurturing young talent. After he won the prestigious Josephine Pignolet Young Chef of the Year award in 2014, doors to the best kitchens in the country opened for him. Now it’s Tikaram’s turn to shine a light on Brisbane’s hot young talent at Good Food Month’s legacy event, the Young Chefs Lunch, on home turf at the stunning heritage wharf building, Rivershed at Howard Smith Wharves, with its jaw-dropping views overlooking the city and Story Bridge. Promoting and nurturing young talent is a Good Food Month tradition and we proudly shine a light on the crème-de-la-crème of Brisbane’s bright young chefs. Tikaram and the Good Food Month chef protégés will be preparing four courses served wine and beer. How to book: Buy tickets here.
Date: Thursday, July 22 Time: Multiple sittings from 6pm Cost: $170 When he’s not on his SBS cooking shows Spice Journey and Recipe For Life, or creating a culinary masterpiece on Masterchef, OR at the helm of one of iconic Melbourne restaurants (including the hatted Maha), powerhouse chef Shane Delia boards a plane to Brisbane for Good Food Month to join forces with fellow hatted chef, Adam Wolfers at Gerard’s Bistro. Delia and Wolfers are relentlessly dedicated chefs who lead the charge for excellence in Middle Eastern-inspired cooking in the country – and they’ve got the awards to prove it. Enjoy an unforgettable one-off multi-course menu served with wine and beer, that will be some of the finest Middle Eastern-inspired cooking you’ll ever enjoy. How to book: You can get tickets here.
Date: Wednesday, July 28 Time: 6.30pm & 6.40pm sittings Cost: $160 Welcome to a plant-based evening that pays tribute to the vibrant Tel Aviv dining scene; the mecca of Middle Eastern flavours. Martinez, the meat-eating vegan chef, author, owner of taste temples Smith & Daughters and Smith & Deli, Creative Culinary Partner at Lona Misa, and occasional Masterchef will be bringing her signature plant-based cooking to Brisbane. She’ll be celebrating ethical eating and conscious cuisine at ZA ZA TA along with the restaurant’s talented and celebrated executive chef Israeli-born Roy Ner (ex-Nour, Sydney). It’s time to break bread and enjoy an elevated, modern, vegetarian retelling of centuries-old dishes. How to book: You can get tickets here.
Celebrate Good Food Month at Montrachet with their prestigious wines and a specially curated five-course menu featuring Montrachet Restaurant favourites like duck and cognac parfait in a choux bun with a mandarin glaze. This one-off event will take place in the restaurant’s exclusive private dining room.
Head Chef Andrew Birse invites you to a 5-course magical and intimate lunch with produce from the Sunshine Coast Hinterlands’ Mountain Top Mushrooms, Maleny Buffalo and Falls Farm. Meet the dedicated people behind these unique and desirable culinary gems, who will share their stories and espouse the richness of this lush region. Australian wines will be expertly paired with each course by Sommelier, Maleah.
Nestled inside the historic, heritage-listed Barracks building on Petrie Terrace, Libertine dishes up Brisbane’s best blend of French-Vietnamese cuisine. This Bastille Day, the team at Libertine have designed a menu to surely satisfy any Francophile. Delight in a 3-course meal with 6-dishes, whilst soaking up the moody atmosphere and cascading chandeliers to raise a glass to freedom!
This is a rare opportunity to discover some of the sensational wines from Queensland’s Granite Belt. MC for the night is Steve Leszczynski, wine writer for QwineReviews.com and contributor to Halliday Wine Companion Magazine among others. A 4-course meal plus canapés created by the Golden Pig team featuring Queensland produce will accompany Steve’s selection of 8 wines. Don’t miss this one-off event for Good Food Month.
Grab your closest friends and family and duck into Three Blue Ducks Brisbane for a long Friday lunch. With a special appearance by one of the three original founding members, Chef and co-owner Mark Labrooy, slow down and savour a signature Three Blue Ducks family-style feast while enjoying stellar views of the iconic Brisbane River. This unique, single table communal dining experience will encourage you to catch up with old friends while making new ones. Indulge in three courses of the Ducks signature paddock to plate style with bold flavours and colors that brings the focus back to fresh, local and honest cuisine.
Poets Lunch at the Balfour is a celebration of the end of the week. An extra reason to leave early as tomorrow is the weekend! Enjoy arrival bubbles to get you in the mood, followed by 3-courses with a focus on the Balfour’s sustainable meats, seafood and local produce. Peak at the eccentric wine list to find a curious bottle or two to enjoy with lunch.
Enjoy an afternoon of all things French. Presented by Sommelier Odara Chrisostomo and Head Chef Antoine Potier, with special guests Pierre Lantourne from The Fromage Yard and Julien Craeye from Fontayne Selection Wines. Together they will entertain you with tips for cheese and wine pairing whilst you enjoy a welcome drink and a canape on arrival, plus five French cheese and wine pairings that will tantalise your taste buds.
Popolo Italian Bar & Kitchen, nestled in Brisbane’s iconic River Quay, boasts South Bank’s most authentic Italian feasting experience on the banks of the sparkling Brisbane River. This modern restaurant and bar with stunning city views serves a rustic Italian fare that is designed for sharing. This Good Food Month, Head Chef Chris Mathers has curated a Buon Cibo (Good Food!) menu that will sure make Nonna proud!
Naga is a colourful Thai restaurant at Eagle Street Pier, that pays homage to both Bangkok and the northern villages of Thailand. Each month Naga celebrates regional Thai Cuisine with a focus on quality Australian produce and local seafood, balanced with freshness, spice, heat and herbs. In the spirit of Good Food Month, the restaurant will be showcasing its most popular dishes from their regional dinner series, all in one delicious evening.
Drawing heavily on Italian tradition, Locale Noosa offers a seasonally changing menu using the best in local produce and premium imported ingredients. Surrounded by lush gardens, Locale Noosa sits in a protected corner of Hastings Street just a few steps from the golden sands of Noosa Main Beach. Their seasonal menu features handmade pasta, traditional Italian antipasti and desserts alongside an impressive selection of wines, beers and cocktails. This Good Food Month, enjoy an Aperol Spritz on arrival followed by a four-course lunch, Italian style shared lunch, highlighting the best of locale, winter produce from their very own Maravista Farm and other producers.
Bringing a timeliness charm to downtown Brisbane, Walter’s Steakhouse serves up premium, dry-aged sizzling steak, prepared and cooked with specialised methods. As part of its Chefs Table Series and hosted by Sous Chef Ben Pillpot in their Private Dining Room, this third instalment will be exploring a menu inspired by smoke.
Date: Wednesdays & Thursdays throughout July Time: 5 – 9pm Cost: $89 + 1.5% service fee
Ready for an adventure? Head to W Brisbane’s Living Room Bar for a 3-course cocktail degustation designed to take you to far reaching destinations in the Old World, New World and the Orient. Curated by master mixologists from East London’s Oriole Bar, a regular feature on the list of World’s 50 Best Bar Awards, these cocktails will explore flavours of South Africa, Chile and India. Paired with each cocktail is a culinary delight, popular in each location. Start with a South African snack, a Chilean dish to savour, and finish off with a sweet treat from India. Passport not required.
Date: Saturdays throughout July Time: 5 – 7pm Cost: from $80
Tucked just off Queen Street in the middle of Brisbane’s CBD, The Gresham Bar holds the only heritage bar licence in Queensland. This unique bar pays homage to its heritage with its service and extensive drink list, whilst having a progressive approach to music and drinks, and an attitude policy (not a dress policy!). Every Saturday throughout July in The Back Room, The Gresham will be hosting a Whisky Appreciate Month as part of Good Food Month. Smallgoods will be provided with compliments of its sister venue, Walter’s Steakhouse.
Date: daily throughout July Time: 5 – 9pm Cost: $255
OTTO celebrates people, place and la dolce vita. Located on the absolute riverfront at South Bank, OTTO Ristorante and OTTO Osteria bring a vibrant glamour to the Queensland dining scene. The food at OTTO is delicious and unashamedly simple, taking inspiration from modern Italy. Head Chef Will Cowper’s menu is fresh, seasonal and produce-driven; sourcing the finest local ingredients and letting them speak for themselves. This Good Food Month, delight in the ultimate luxury with a five course truffle degustation dinner menu curated by OTTO Head Chef Will Cowper.
Motorwagen’s Head Chef Callum Rogers is pairing up with their top class suppliers to bring you a select series of snacks, featuring the best in the business who focus on premium, underutilized or underappreciated food produce. Join the Motorwagen team on the terrace for live cooking, snacks throughout the night, cocktails, craft beers and fine wines. Chat with Motorwagen’s suppliers and producers, get some inspiration on how the same ingredients can be used at home. Bring your friends and party with us, enjoying some great live music, celebrating with us local produce with the people that bring it to us!
Ready to get your murder mystery on? At Alchemy’s Murder Mystery Dinner, you’ll be allocated your character on arrival. Be sure to dress up in line with the ‘Kelly Gang’ theme and you’ll be in for a night of competitive games and a load of fun served up alongside a lip-smacking meal.
Another juicy tidbit: After a hiatus in 2020, due to the pandemic, the Brisbane Night Noodle Markets are set to return to the city in a brand new location, the City Botanic Gardens for 12 sizzling nights of Asian-inspired flavours from 21 July – 1 August, with stallholders and menus to be announced shortly.
The best restaurants come steeped in tradition. Luckily Brisbane is in full supply of rustic pizzerias channelling Napoli-style dough and candle-lit trattorias, serving steaming bowls of ragu. Whether you want hearty and full-flavoured dishes or modern takes on Roman dining, there’s an Italian restaurant for every occasion.
Here’s where to find Brisbane’s best Italian feasts.
Fortitude Valley If you need to book a long lunch or simply want to indulge in a rich, comforting bowl of pasta, pull up a seat at Gemelli. This large Italian restaurant sits on the corner of James Street—one of Brisbane’s most popular shopping strips—and is the perfect pit stop to fuel up after a long morning of shopping. The menu boasts home-style family recipes and generous servings, including pasta served in bread bowls. We recommend the gnocchi al forno. The pillowy soft gnocchi is bathed in Napoli sauce, topped with buffalo mozzarella and cooked in a wood-fired oven. Don’t forget to pair it with a cocktail or glass of wine.
Fortitude Valley Next door to Gemelli is Bar Tano, the sister restaurant sharing the same la dolce vita approach to Italian food and drink. Stop in for a refreshing Aperol spritz, soak up a sunset, or stay after dark and let loose at a late-night disco. Bar Tano is reminiscent of taking an evening passeggiata through the cobbled pathways of Sicily, where bars and restaurants overflow with personality and exuberance. The food, which includes antipasti and salumi, is by Gemelli, so you know it’s going to be good. As for the bar, it’s charming and intoxicating. An afternoon at Bar Tano will transport you to Italy.
South Brisbane Otto’s signature bright outdoor furniture is hard to miss when you’re taking a stroll on the River Quay Green South Bank. The recently renovated restaurant commands riverfront views making it a destination, not just a restaurant. Most weekends, you will find it filled with locals and visitors, sharing pizzas and toasting cocktails. The menu is packed with homemade pasta and larger mains for sharing. However, the heavily awarded restaurant is best known for its Champagne lobster and bottarga spaghettini—a must-try.
Woolloongabba 1889 Enoteca is the kind of establishment where the servers are Italian, and the walls are exposed brick. Step in and be transported to Rome, with authentic Roman dishes laid out on white Bretagne dinner plates and hosts an extensive and lauded wine list. The pasta is all housemade and can be ordered as an entree or main. We suggest ordering the slow-cooked pork and beef ragu wrapped around pappardelle.
Fortitude Valley Are you looking for somewhere romantic for dinner? Bianca is a beautiful Italian restaurant with waiters flittering around a buzzy dining room. Despite its modern and slick decor, there’s nothing pretentious about the dining experience here. Curly graphics, monogrammed serving ware, and pops of colour keep it light and fun. As for the food, it’s a straightforward menu of snacks, entrees, house-made pasta dishes and a range of main courses. If you need something lighter, you can order from the antipasti section and dig into little creamy bags of burrata, mortadella, sardines, and marinated mushrooms.
Fortitude Valley This unassuming warehouse hides an exceptional 60-seat Italian restaurant serving up an innovative menu drawing on the family’s Italian-Australian roots. Think Moreton Bay Bug risotto, lamb ragu, local grilled fish with fennel, and yellowtail kingfish Crudo. The wine list draws from Australian winemakers and some tipples from Europe’s biggest regions.