Eating in Ascot and Hamilton
A quick mid-week dinner, Sunday brunch with friends, a place to kick on after the horse races or a first-date diner – the leafy suburbs of Ascot and Hamilton to Brisbane’s north-east are filled with restaurants, cafes and bars for any and every situation. Sit by the water at Hamilton eating Italian, or sling back craft beer and specialty coffee along Racecourse Road.
Breakfast needn’t be just bacon and eggs on toast. Petrichor & Co is influenced by the owner’s Colombian heritage, so alongside the brekky classics expect to find Calentado – a rice, corn and bean dish with a fried egg and chorizo. Further down the street you'll find Cafe 63. It has a massive menu that essentially lets you build your breakfast. Who doesn't love to curate their plate?
Also on Racecourse Road, Journey Cafe and The Little Persian Cafe are two other local favourites.
If you're looking for stunning river views, Northshore Harbour Cafe wins hands down for ambience and tasty breakfast choices. The vanilla waffles will not disappoint, but if savoury is your thing The Captains Wife with halloumi skewers and potato, feta hash will satisfy that salty craving.
Pineapple Express at Portside Wharf offers all-day breakfast with a selection of superfood bowls, smoothies and frappes. The best part is and is open from 6:30 am just in time to fuel up after your morning run.
The top floor of Portside Wharf can be relied upon for a more refined dining experience. Japanese restaurant, Sono, offers traditional sashimi and sushi and an array of entrees and mains that would impress even the toughest critic. Opt for the tasting menu if it’s a special occasion.
Mediterranean-inspired cuisine is not missing from this riverside location, with Byblos continually offering up exquisite food perfect for couples or larger groups, while neighbouring Gusto Da Gianni brings Italian flare through a range of pizza, pasta and Italian mains.
Also at Portside, the duck and dumplings at Bamboo Basket and curries with spice at Aamaya Indian Restaurant are worth making a booking for.
For Manhattan-style burgers and wings, you can’t go past 5 Boroughs and its ginger pepper caramel wings or head to Hello Harry for delicious burgers and cold craft beer. Meltz Gourmet Pizza Bar is the place for melt-in-your-mouth pizza, or for a classic Italian meal, check out Gino’s.
For fresh or fried seafood try Seagrill who add a Vietnamese twist or St James Crabhouse Bar and Grill to get your crustation worship on - bibs supplied. Ginga is also known for fresh seafood usually served in the form of sushi. However, like every Australian sushi joint, there are non-seafood options for the person who can’t stomach raw fish. For super fresh takeaway seafood try Samies in Hamilton, there prawns are legendary and there produce selection is extensive.
Aussies' penchant for Asian food is certainly evident in these northern suburbs, with a number of restaurants available. Taro’s Ramen (arguably the best ramen in Australia) and Hosokawa offer Japanese in casual settings. Thai food is plentiful – look to Betong 888, That Thai and Northern Thai for your Chicken Panang cravings.
From dinner to drinks
Wanting to start drinks early with the potential of dinner but not wanting to move from the bar to a restaurant? There are a handful of restaurant-bars in this area. The Hamilton Hotel offers cheap afternoon drinks with the promise of quality pub food in the very next room. Over at Portside, steakhouse Belvedere Bar n Grill gives you the riverside location perfect for scenic drinks and a meal.
On Racecourse Road, 5 Boroughs provides New York-style burgers and BBQ with an extensive cocktail list, perfect for a hangout with mates. For something a little more fancy try One Fifty Bar & Eatery. Offering a full menu and chef selections accompanied by creative cocktails and premium spirits you can opt for a selection of bar eats or sit down for a main meal while the drinks continue to flow.
After eating at every savoury restaurant on offer, it’s time to fill that dessert corner of the stomach with a sweet treat. Pick up a cupcake from Vanilla Pod Cafe, a late-night gelato from Milani Gelateria or a macaroon from Le Bon Choix.
Eat Street Northshore is a popular destination on Friday and Saturday evenings from 4pm until late, and Sundays from 11am until 7pm. With just about every cuisine imaginable on offer, arrive hungry and navigate your way through the crowds while trying to make the impossible decision on which cuisine to try next.