The round-up: food you loved as kids – all grown up
Before you say anything, we know that you can still enjoy fairy bread any time you choose to make some. And yes, you can boil a pot of cheerios and eat them one by one while you watch Netflix – we’re not judgemental types (unless you forget the tomato sauce, then shame on you). What we will say is that sometimes your treasured memories are best left alone, and that if you are looking to revisit some of your culinary habits from when you were five, you might be a bit disappointed. Several places around Brisbane are putting a spin on our old favourites, making them more suitable for an adult palette. Here is a collection of some food you loved as kids, all grown up.
Spiked creaming soda at Red Hook: This Brisbane City burger haven is known for whipping up mind-boggling specials that would be any kid’s dream meal, but it’s in the cocktail menu that you’ll find some old friends. If your parents took you to visit the milk bar every once in a while, you might have been treated to milkshakes, creaming sodas or spiders. Now you can treat yo’ self to the same drinks and food you loved as kids, but with an adults-only twist. Red Hook’s Spiked Cream Soda mixes vodka, ice-cream and creaming soda into one helluva blast from the past.
Boozy ice-cream sundaes at Cowch: What kid doesn’t love ice-cream? Ice-cream cakes, chocolate sundaes, soft serve by the bowl at Sizzler – the creamy goodness of ice-cream is the stuff dreams are made out of. Our love for ice-cream never really wanes as we get older (despite our dentist’s stern warnings against over-indulgence), but it takes a lot to improve upon something we already love. Well, Cowch has figured it out – simply add a bit of something only adults can appreciate. Cowch’s menu has a range of extra guilty pleasures that take dessert to a whole new level. The Dae Before Mondae features three scoops of ice-cream served on a bed of chocolate Baileys and Frangelico-soaked brownies, which is then topped with Tim Tams, whipped cream and dark chocolate drizzle.
Fish finger sandwiches and chip buttys at Hope and Anchor: Jamie Webb’s Paddington haunt Hope & Anchor evokes the comfortable charm of a good old British pub. The food here is made with a no-fuss approach and a broad appeal, with a few menu items that might be familiar to some from their days as a youngster. The fish finger sandwich makes an appearance on the lunch menu, with a helping of tartare sauce and salad, while diners can order a traditional chip butty with a generous spread of black garlic mayo and house-made tomato sauce to take them back to their youth.
Loaded fries with Twisties salt at Fritzenberger: Caxton Street’s Fritzenberger not only knows its stuff when it comes to the latest and greatest trends in burgers, it’s approach to fries will excite the inner child of just about anyone. Get this – the loaded fries come doused in cheese sauce, candied bacon and green onions and then covered in Twisties salt. I don’t know about you, but I’m instantly transported back to my days of rummaging through Twisties packets, fingers coated in orange crumbs. I think it’s about time I revisited that stage in my life.
Grown-up McMuffins at Morning After: For most kids, a trip to McDonalds was an extra-special treat. The McDonalds breakfast was a formative meal that influenced many (I still dream of hotcakes) and the old-school McMuffin was – and still is – a popular favourite amongst kids (second only to the Happy Meal). These days with drive-throughs and 24-hour breakfast available, the magic and lustre of a McDonalds breakfast has lessened somewhat. Morning After in West End offers a killer alternative that will take you right back to childhood with the MaMuffin, which boasts sausage, egg, American cheese, spiced tomato relish and a hash brown.
Fancy dippy eggs and toast soldiers at Pearl Cafe: When you were a kid, it didn’t get much better than dippy eggs and toast soldiers. Just the thought of runny yolk, crunchy toast and a glass of orange juice on the side gives me a serious nostalgia buzz. Pearl Cafe in Woolloongabba offers a classy interpretation of the classic breakfast, jazzed up to satisfy our sophisticated adult tastes. In addition to four-minute eggs with rye soldiers, diners will also be able to slap a bit of Yarra Valley caviar on top – how fancy!
Cereal parfaits at Sonder Dessert: Beyond our gourmet mueslis and granolas with a bit of fruit thrown on top, grown-up cereal breakfasts are largely a dull affair, but for kids the cereal selection has always been varied and exciting. Cereals like Coco Pops, Fruit Loops and Frosties – while not exactly nutritious – were delicious. Adult cereals are boring! Thankfully, Sonder Dessert is jazzing up cereal in a big way with its matcha and hojicha parfaits, which feature crunchy corn flakes piled on top of vanilla soft serve and matcha ice-cream. Now if we can just get a rice bubble variety in the works I’ll be a happy chappy.
Frog in a hole at The Gettin’ Place: One of New Farm’s most popular coffee joints has embraced an approach that celebrates the lighter side of food. In addition to the likes of pizza sandwiches and fancy toasts, The Gettin’ Place also offers up its own interpretation of a frog in a hole. Picture garlic-buttered toast with a fried egg in the middle, served with smoked ham, greens, tomato relish and even some haloumi on the side – talk about bringing back the classics in style!
Coffee popsicles at Queen of Pops: Remember the days of Paddle Pops, Bubble-O Bills and Golden Gaytimes? There was nothing better than getting an ice-cream from the corner store and wolfing it down before it melted all down your hand. While those ice-creams still exist, our tastes have matured slightly. Queen of Pops makes a range of delicious ice-cold, creamy treats with a twist – they are made out of coffee. All it takes for kids to go bezerk with energy is red cordial but for us big kids it takes a bit more. Thankfully, Queen of Pops is on hand to give us a kick in the pants with its range of pops and soft serves.
Naughty milkshakes at Brooklyn Depot: Another home for some cheeky boozy milkshakes is burger joint Brooklyn Depot in South Bank. In addition to some ice-cream sandwiches and apple pie (also faves of spoiled brats such as myself), patrons can finish their meal with a chocolate shake with ice-cream, crushed Oreos and Mozart black liquer, or a strawberry milkshake with strawberry puree and sauce, Kit Kat shards and Crème de Fraise strawberry liqueur.
The Stumble Guide is our comprehensive Brisbane dining guide with more than 1800 places to eat, drink, shop and play.