Brisbane's best tapas: ready to share with friends - Visit Brisbane


Brisbane's best tapas: ready to share with friends

Once upon a time, according to legend, the Wise King of Spain was struck down with a serious illness that meant he could only eat small portions of food (with wine, of course). How tragic.

Others say a more humble beginning came about when bartenders used a slice of bread as a "tapa" or lid to keep flies out of drinks.

Either way, when we think tapas we think Spanish cuisine – but modern tapas transcends those borders, with Brisbane home to a number of Japanese, Italian, modern Australian and French-Vietnamese tapas joints.

The term tapas can refer to any food served on small plates and accompanied by wine, so with that in mind, leave the car at home.

Moda – Spanish

Inspired by head chef Javier Codina’s Spanish heritage, this Mediterranean restaurant in Brisbane City serves an exquisite range of fine cuisine using fresh local produce. Be tempted by the entree menu for small plates such as tempura monkfish with passionfruit aioli or caramelised peach with Spanish jamon.
Good for: Higher-end modern tapas
Location: Paddington

Coppa Spuntino – Italian 

There is no pasta in sight at this Italian joint. Spuntino translates to "snack", and at Coppa the tapas plates are a true treat. Tuck into a plate of fresh shaved prosciutto, goose liver parfait, calamari fritto and more.
Good for: Modern Italian eats
Location: Brisbane City

Libertine – French-Vietnamese

Dining at Libertine

Celebrating the fusion of French and Vietnamese cuisine, the decadently decorated Libertine specialises in small street food tapas plates, plus larger plates for sharing. Take your pick from an extensive menu or tell your waiter “I’m hungry” and the chef will serve you a selection of seven dishes.
Good for: Dinner before a movie
Location: The Barracks

Pata Negra Tapas Bar and Spanish Restaurant - Spanish

For excellently curated tapas plates and great prices Pata Negra is the place. A constantly rotating menu means numerous visits to try all of the tasty treats. 
Good for: Authentic Spanish tapas
Location: Bardon

Black Fire Brisbane - Spanish

Organic and delicious seasonal produce served with a side of family-style hospitality. With a food focus and great wine we promise you won't leave hungry. 
Good for: fresh produce and hospitality any day of the week
Location: Brisbane City

Ole – Spanish

First things first, take your pick from the sangria menu (yes, the sangria menu). Next, dive into the classic Spanish tapas menu with fried manchego cheese, deep-fried stuffed olives and more. Be sure to save space for the crème catalana to finish.
Good for: Crowd-pleasing Spanish tapas
Location: South Bank

Canvas – Modern Australian

Canvas, Woollongabba

First and foremost, Canvas is a cocktail bar – arguably Brisbane’s best. So, the best news for cocktail enthusiasts is that the menu is equally epic. Tuck into arancini, croquettes, sticky pork belly, prawn and chorizo, chicken wings and much more. 
Good for: Tapas and cocktails
Location: Woolloongabba

Public – Modern Australia

Home to one of Brisbane’s bucket-list eats – head to Public and taste the KFD (that’s Kentucky Fried Duck). The menu at Public is all share and tapas-based, with black ants and worms making an interesting feature.
Good for: The adventurous type
Location: Brisbane City

Gerard‘s Bar – chacuterie

This chacuterie bar on James St has whole menu dedicated to salume, pate and cheese. If that isn’t enough, try the snack plates of miso octopus, duck liver profiteroles and bone marrow brulee.
Good for: Chacuterie 
Location: Fortitude Valley

Next Door Kitchen – American

Step back in time, right back to the 1920s when the liquor was hard, and jazz filled the air. Next Door Kitchen takes inspiration from New York speakeasies, with a modern American share and tapas menu that features gangster chicken wings, polenta bites, garlic prawns and more.
Good for: Place to take the gang
Location: South Bank

Sushi Kotobuki – Japanese

An izakaya is a Japanese restaurant that serves food to accompany drinks. If you can resist the incredible sushi, try the wide range of tapas plates that all sit around the $4 mark. The agedashi tofu, okonomoyaki sticks and yakitori skewers are the perfect snack to accompany sake or plum wine.
Good for: Cheap eats
Location: East Brisbane

Popolo ؘ– Italian

Popolo Weekday Winter Lunch deal

Set down by the water at River Quay, Popolo offers a rustic Italian tapas menu that’ll get your mouth watering with arancini, sardines, pan-seared scallops, meatballs and more. Those who are hungry can dive into larger share plates or add a few sides.
Good for: Crowd-pleasing Italian eats
Location: South Bank

Summer House – Modern Australian

This Kangaroo Point restaurant has its priorities right – breakfast and tapas make up the bulk of its menu. Eat around the world with everything from hoisin duck pancakes to American pulled-pork sliders, and Szechuan calamari to massaman barramundi curry.
Good for: Global tapas plates
Location: Kangaroo Point

Alegria – Mediterranean

Alegria serves peasant-style tapas with a focus on classic dishes with a contemporary twist. Try the braised wild boar, Turkish spiced soft-shell crab or melon salad at its Park Road location.
Good for: Plates drawing on all European cuisines
Location: Samford Village

Bird’s Nest Yakitori – Japanese

Bird's Nest

Irasshaimase! You’ve reached Bird’s Nest, an authentic yakitori restaurant and little slice of Japan in West End. The first traditional binchoutan (white charcoal) restaurant in Australia, here you can select a skewer set or order as you need – chicken and vegetables sticks will arrive at your table as they are cooked. Pair with sake or Japanese beer and you’ve got the perfect Asian tapas.
Good for: Authentic yakitori
Location: West End

Byblos – Lebanese

Hip waterside bar and restaurant Byblos is the perfect spot for a Sunday session with a few "mezat" or tapas plates to share. Play it safe with a dip and bread platter, shish barak (spiced lamb and pinenut-filled dumplings) and chicken wings, or branch out with escargot, cabbage rolls and cuttlefish in ink.
Good for: Sundays with friends
Location: Hamilton

Hungry for more?