Lucia is set to bring a little taste of European dining to Tugun with tapas and top-notch tipples
With the uncertainty we have all felt over the past couple of years, we are all craving, perhaps more than ever before, a sense of connection. There’s a kind of intangible sentiment now that every meal with mates is something to savour, a moment to treasure, something to embrace wholeheartedly. In many respects this is a hallmark of the European way of dining, where friends and family while away hours picking at plates of charcuterie with a cocktail or wine in hand, accompanied by raucous laughter and meaningful conversation. This very notion of dining was the inspiration behind Tugun’s soon-to-open tapas garden, Lucia. Here’s everything we know so far …
If the beachside suburb of Tugun is not yet on your culinary radar, it’s about to be. Lucia has completely transformed the former Craft House along Golden Four Drive into a Spanish-inspired tapas bar that sets the scene for long, leisurely lunches and spirited sundowners. The dreamy new sip spot is the handiwork of Oli Frost, the visionary behind Burleigh’s popular speakeasy NAÂMi, Mediterranean marvel Maman and burger joint Milky Lane in Surfers Paradise, and is inspired by his own adventures through Spain and Portugal. Here to whisk you away to San Sebastian, the menu has been meticulously crafted by Lucia’s head chef, Lucas Biffi, to celebrate bold and authentic Spanish cuisine. Prepare your tastebuds for traditional appetisers such as patatas bravas and croquetas alongside porciones (portions) of vodka-soaked flamed chorizo, escabeche de pulpo (baby octopus marinated and cooked in extra-virgin olive oil, vinegar, onion and garlic) and paella de la casa (traditional paella with king prawn, mussels, chicken, peas and roast capsicum). In true tapas style, there’s a social component to each of the dishes, which are best enjoyed with a chilled beverage in hand. Pickles also feature heavily, with almost 30 different kinds of pickled vegetables making an appearance.
If you’ve had the pleasure of sipping at NAÂMi, then you’re already familiar with mixologist Bree Erica’s passion for top-notch tipples. This time around, however, the drinkables will boast a summery beer-garden vibe and have been created to complement the bevy of bites. The Verde Smash with hints of muddled basil and elderflower offers a delightfully refreshing sip, while the mango-coconut pina colada tastes like summer in a glass. Lucia will also feature sangria on tap, local and international craft beers and a clutch of preservative-free and organic wines from Australia and abroad. There will also be magnums of rosé, for those extra-special occasions … like Saturdays. Similar to NAÂMi and Maman, Lucia has been designed to make you feel like you’ve stepped off the plane (or, in Lucia’s case, the beach) into a cantina in Northern Spain. Inside, the striking fit-out is imbued with classic European vibes. A plush bench seat and clusters of smaller tables set the scene for intimate gatherings, while outside a beauteous terracotta-hued beer garden adorned with flowering bougainvillea and olive trees is the kind of place you could easily (and merrily) while away an afternoon in the sunshine with a jug of sangria. We’re calling it now, Lucia will be the sip spot for summer.
Lucia is set to open its doors in coming weeks! Follow Lucia on Instagram for updates.
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