The round-up: where to find the best restaurants in Woolloongabba
A few minutes beyond the boundaries of Brisbane’s cultural epicentre South Bank and a hop over the Story Bridge from Fortitude Valley sits an inner-south suburb that is home to some of Brisbane’s best dining destinations. Woolloongabba has long been an underrated area for top-notch nosh, but Brisbane’s best kept secret isn’t staying low-key for long. From within the shadow of The Gabba to the suburb’s back streets, several restaurants are thriving. If you’re looking to expand your culinary horizons, have a gander at our list of some of the best restaurants in Woolloongabba.
Detour, 6/11 Logan Road: Damon Amos blew diners away when he launched Logan Road fine-diner Detour in 2017, and more than two years on he’s maintained the same standard of fare that established it as one of the best restaurants in Woolloongabba. Across a menu that is inclusive to vegans, vegetarians and gluten-free eaters, Damon explores various textures and ingredient pairings, creating a truly unique array of dishes. The K.F.D (Kentucky fried duck), wagyu brisket pastrami, succulent star-anise pork belly, cured kingfish with apple, tiger’s milk and sorrel, and wombok with cured salmon and sesame are just some of the phenomenal options you’re likely to find here.
1889 Enoteca, 10–12 Logan Road: This spot is not only one of the best restaurants in Woollongabba, but it’s one of the best in all of Brisbane. We’ve listed this restaurant in our best Italian and best pasta round-ups, so that should clue you in to its overall quality. 1889 Enoteca’s menu of Roman-style eats – including braised pork and beef pappardelle, spaghetti and guanciale carbonara or pork and fennel sausage gnocchi gnocchi – is the stuff of legend.
Pearl, 28 Logan Road: It’s not uncommon to see Pearl pumping with patrons during the morning – the venue is one of Brisbane’s best cafes, after all. That being said, Pearl’s got some fantastic dinner options as well, and its intimate atmosphere makes for a brilliant date-night destination. The menu is always shifting, but previous dishes such as grilled spatchcock, truffle risotto, crispy artichoke and pork hock can attest to Pearl’s quality.
Ben’s Chinese and Vietnamese Restaurant, 14 Annerley Road: A bona fide local institution, Ben’s Chinese and Vietnamese Restaurant is one part lively eatery and one part karaoke bar. We’re not kidding – you can savour serves of egg noodles with BBQ pork, grilled king-prawn salad and salt-and-pepper tofu one minute, and then rock out to ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ the next.
C’est Bon, 609 Stanley Street: Although C’est Bon has been operating since 2008, there’s never been a better time to stop in than right now. In 2019 the current owners overhauled the restaurant and its neighbouring wine-bar space, adding a private cellar dining room, a garden terrace and rooftop deck. C’est Bon’s Le Bon Bar now opens for breakfast, lunch and night-time snacking, but the main restaurant space is where you’ll want to go for dinner. Sample the likes of Tasmanian spring lamb rump with Moroccan moghrabieh couscous, crispy twice-cooked organic free-range duck with sweet-potato puree, and traditional French onion soup with croutons, fromage and puff pastry.
Electric Avenue, 23 Logan Road: When the Canvas crew opened Electric Avenue in 2017, it cemented the Logan Road cul-de-sac as Woolloongabba’s bona fide foodie hub. The ground-floor dining area is lavishly appointed with comfortable seating and old-school bistro atmosphere, while the menu is loaded with contemporary choices made from seasonal and locally sourced produce. Opt to graze on share plates of grilled calamari, roast-duck bao buns and pork-belly tacos, or tuck in to some substantial plates including braised beef-cheek pie, bangers and mash, Spanish mackerel, handmade gnocchi, and rib fillets.
Mirchh Masala, 3/110 Logan Road: Situated directly above Woolloongabba’s sizeable Indian grocer on Logan Road, Mirchh Masala is commonly listed amongst Brisabne’s best Indian eateries. The menu is entirely vegetarian and is packed with variety, from the signature chole bature and iconic street food bhaji pav to masala cheese dosa and crispy fried samosas.
Norman Hotel, 102 Ipswich Road: Although self-styled as Brisbane’s worst vegetarian restaurant, this steakhouse has a resume that attests to its status as a top-flight carnivore haven. Woolloongabba’s mecca of all things meaty has earned its place in our city’s heart as a beloved institution that specialises in steak, but the menu also offers morsels for those seeking something lighter – think braised pork, mussels, parmigiana and more.
Superfly Pizza, 17 Gibbon Street: Superfly is a secret little pizza joint tucked away in Woolloongabba’s Eden Lane precinct. Originally starting life as a modern Japanese izakaya-style venue, the new-look Superfly is now a community eatery for locals to frequent on the regular. Superfly’s menu offers a total of six pizzas to choose from (skewing slightly to favour red-base options), while also cooking up rotating specials topped with more experimental flavour pairings. The bar here stocks a killer selection of minimal-intervention wines, with some Mediterranean varietals and Italian-inspired cocktails added to the mix.
If you’re looking for more restaurants in Woolloongabba, be sure to have a browse through our Stumble Guide!
The Stumble Guide is our comprehensive Brisbane dining guide with more than 2400 places to eat, drink, shop and play.