Epic new restaurants, bars and cafes to open in late 2018

Brisbane is shifting and changing dramatically right now. Our first five-star hotel in 20 years just opened (the W Hotel), and there are more big developments like Queen's Wharf, the Brisbane Quarter and Howard Smith Wharves to come.

These slick new precincts, along with new residential apartment blocks, mean we’re expecting some great new dining and drinking joints to fill them. Here’s what we’re expecting to open in Brisbane in the second half of 2018.

Take a look at this list of Brisbane’s big events happening in the second half of the year and plan an epic foodie getaway.

(P.S. If you missed it, we’ve rounded up the best new openings from the first half of 2018 here)

Hellenika, The Calile, Fortitude Valley

James Street’s new hotel is getting a distinctly Greek flavour. The favourite Gold Coast restaurant is opening a huge second location in Brisbane that will sprawl with poolside cabanas and a patio to catch the breeze. 

Opal, Emporium Hotel, South Bank

Chef Josue Lopez (formerly of two-hatted GOMA Restaurant) has been crafting the signature restaurant at the new luxury Emporium Hotel for months. Known for making food with heart, creativity and local ingredients, expect big things for this new 40-seat degustation restaurant. 

Donna Chang & Boom Boom Room, Adina Hotel, Brisbane City

The restaurant group behind Blackbird Bar & Grill is planning to open a super smart Chinese restaurant, Donna Chang, focused on Sichuan flavours and authentic Cantonese cuisine. There will also be the Boom Boom Room bar. Both will open in July as part of the new Adina Hotel on George St. 

Persone, W Hotel, Brisbane Quarter, Brisbane City

The family-owned Gambaro Group is opening a smart-casual Italian bar and bistro on the first floor of the new luxury W Hotel. Expected to open in July, it will have a big balcony that overlooks the Brisbane River and South Bank. 

Heritij, Brisbane Quarter, Brisbane City

Michelin-starred chef Manjunath Mural will be bringing his signature Asian-Indian cuisine to Brisbane. The big restaurant will sit on the first floor (hello river views!) and will blend traditional Indian prep with flavours from Australia. 

Howard Smith Wharves, Brisbane City

Howard Smith Wharves

The 3.4 hectare site under the Story Bridge is about to transform into a key piece of Brisbane’s riverside story. Apparently there will be at least eight restaurants opening up including:

Greek restaurant...

A polished Greek joint from Sydney chef and restaurateur Jonathan Barthelmess (of Apollo and Cho Cho San fame).

Toko

An upmarket Japanese diner Toko cut from the same cloth as its Sydney and Melbourne siblings.

Stanley

A swish 180-seat Hong Kong Chinese-style spot from Brisbane’s Andrew Baturo (Gresham, Popolo, Libertine).

Overwater Bar

And an amazing looking, octagon-shaped overwater bar designed by Anna Spiro.

Spice Temple and Rockpool Bar & Grill, TBC

Neil Perry is bringing these two southern dining institutions north to Brisbane. Rockpool is an old world fine diner with a focus on seafood and steak, while Spice Temple brings the heat with top Chinese cuisine. Anticipation is hot, but we’ll likely be waiting until early next year.

Willow Vale Cooking School, Scenic Rim

Another Michelin-star chef is back, but Bruno Loubet is moving here for good to open up his own cooking school in the hinterland. Selling a fast-paced 200-seat plant-focused diner in London for a 125-year-old Queenslander set on 8.5 acres of in the leafy Scenic Rim is the life change he needed. Classes will use as much produce from the property as possible, with fruit trees, chickens and garden beds going in right now. Expect classes to start by September.

Pata Negra, Bardon

A new Spanish tapas bar and deli is headed for Bardon. Expect to find tapas, pinchos and montaditos to enjoy over wine, plus a wide range of deli goods. 

Little Valley, Fortitude Valley

A new Cantonese-inspired restaurant from the Rick Shores gang will soon fire up in the Valley with chef Jake Pregnell on the burners.

Mongrel, Milton

Brisbane’s pop-up restaurant Mongrel is finally getting pots and pans of its own. Opening a kitchen and bar on Park Road in July, the diner will offer Peruvian street food eats with a nose-to-tail focus. The local favourite beef tongue tacos will be on the menu. 

California Lane, Fortitude Valley

A long time coming, California Lane will finally join the Valley laneways (Bakery and Winn) with vintage summer vibes and palm trees playing up to its name. With space for around seven new tenancies, expect another influx of venues when it opens in July.

The Golden Pig, Newstead

This favourite inner-city cooking school is changing into a pan-Asian eatery and bar from July. Good news for cooks, the school will still run classes on Sundays and Mondays. 

Maeve, South Brisbane

In excellent news, Brisbane is getting another European-inspired wine bar. From the owners of Hello Please and Ol’ School, Maeve will sit on the top floor of a heritage-listed building on the corners of Melbourne and Grey streets.

Tai Tai, South Bank

The ABC building is getting a new resident. Across the road from QPAC, this smart Cantonese restaurant will be a great location for a pre-theatre meal.

Art of Booze, TBC

Gin is the spirit of the moment, so there’s no better time for Brisbane to get its first inner-city distillery. Currently the trio behind gypsy gin brand Art of Booze are distilling out at Flinders Peak Winery in the Scenic Rim (yes, you can visit and stay at the winery overnight) but will be opening their own distillery and bar in the inner-city in the next few months. 

Soapbox Beer, Fortitude Valley

Two dads with a passion for homebrew led to Soapbox. The duo are planning to open a microbrewery and bar with a tasting room and guest taps in an old dance studio on the corner of Gipps St and Ranwell Lane.

Honto, Fortitude Valley

A new 90-seat Japanese diner from the crew behind Longtime is set to open in the Valley later this year.

Hungry for more?