South Bank welcomes two-storey Tex-Mex and margarita manor El Camino Cantina
With colourful decor coating the walls, luminescent neon lights blazing vivid hues and party vibes reverberating through the air, you’d be forgiven for thinking there was no way El Camino Cantina could escalate its roistering appeal. Well, the team at Rockpool Dining Group has elected to go supersize with the latest entrant in its burgeoning portfolio – a two-level El Camino Cantina outpost situated in the heart of South Bank’s Stanley Street Plaza. Transforming the old Munich Brauhaus building into a multifaceted, rock ‘n’ roll-inspired party hub, this deluxe El Camino Cantina is kicking off its opening celebrations with some margarita-soaked revelry.
South Bank’s riverside precinct has been quieter than usual lately, courtesy of COVID-19’s impact on the local tourism scene. The iconic precinct won’t be quiet for much longer, though – especially now that the doors to El Camino Cantina’s South Bank party palace have officially opened to the public. The Tex-Mex-inspired concept has been a big hit in Brisbane since arriving in 2018, with both its Bowen Hills and Chermside locations remaining popular end-of-week haunts for locals looking to unwind. Brisbane’s third El Camino Cantina location (which launched on Friday November 20) is taking the brand’s signature rambunctious vibes and dialling them up to 11, with a whopping 510 seats spread across two levels and three areas – all offering plenty of room for taco chomping, guacamole scooping, margarita sipping and, when restrictions allow, some boogying. Gone is Munich Brauhaus’s beer hall-style aesthetic. What is now in place is a polychromatic playground that extends from a 140-seat umbrellaed alfresco area to a 120-seater ground-floor bar and dining space and then upstairs to the 250-seat Hotel Diablo. It’s this latter portion that will strike El Camino regulars as perhaps the most exciting feature. Split between two interlinked spaces, Hotel Diablo features ample booth-style leather seating, communal tables, a stage, a DJ booth, a dedicated bar and even room for a dance floor. The walls have been plastered in colourful posters advertising live performances from Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, Queens of the Stone Age and more, which hint at the raucous inspiration behind Hotel Diablo’s intent and focus on live entertainment.
El Camino Cantina South Bank is celebrating its opening with a six-week-long festival called Ritapalooza, which will be showcasing 15 mouth-watering flavours of margaritas, including Calypso Crush, Hubba Bubba, Skittle, sour apple and many more that can be sampled frozen, on the rocks, Cadillac-style (with a float of Grand Marnier on top) or as part of a four-flavour tasting paddle. Margaritas not your thing? No stress – El Camino’s bars are stocked with beer (bottles of Dos Equis XX, Corona, Pacifico and Negra Modelo, plus local draught beers), sangria, cocktails, wine and plenty of tequila and mezcal. The other half of El Camino’s salivation-inducing offering is its menu of Tex-Mex morsels. All through Ritapalooza, the kitchen will be dishing out its signature range of tacos (including three new options – chorizo with mango salsa, tempura prawn with habanero salsa and popcorn chicken with chipotle aioli), chargrilled fajitas, chicken wings, loaded nachos, churros and bottomless baskets of complimentary corn chips. Looking to establish itself as one of South Bank’s preeminent party destinations, Hotel Diablo has announced some big names for Ritapalooza’s entertainment line-up. Local DJ duo Mashd N Kutcher will be performing on Friday November 27, then Club MTV’s DJ Brooklyn will be spinning on Saturday November 28.
Fancy a margarita or two? El Camino Cantina is officially open to the public. Hit the Stumble Guide for operating hours, dining reservation details and more important info!
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