Brisbane’s Best New Restaurant And Bar Openings Of 2023

By Rusyda Ramadhania

It’s been a good year here in Brisbane/Meanjin, with one incredible new venue after another hitting the city, all of them sending our taste buds into overdrive. From hyped openings from hospitality bigwigs to comebacks and remixes, here at Urban List we’ve wined and dined our way through them all. To be honest, we might need to send you an invoice issued by our dietician in return for our efforts.

Drum roll, please. Without further ado, these are the best new restaurant and bar openings to hit Brisbane in 2023. 

Establishment 203

6 Marshall Street, Fortitude Valley

Image credit: Establishment 203 | Supplied 

Upgrades, people, upgrades. This year, Brisbane's been witness to some huge ones, especially in the Valley. Upping the ante on the makeovers is 6 Marshall Street, a space that has seen a revolving door of nightclubs (including Mono and Oh Hello—remember those?), which has now transformed into a sophisticated spot for dry-aged sizzlers and pasta.

Opening its doors just this November, you'd think Establishment 203 has yet to prove its place on this list, but we're here to tell you otherwise. Though its pink interiors may have you humming to La Vie en Rose, the food is where it's at. Hear this: The cattle farming family Stanbroke owns the venue, so your steaks are farm-fresh and aged in-house. If you're on for carbs on carbs on carbs, there is simply no shortage of pasta here, with menu stars such as wagyu sirloin bolognese and scampi linguine.


8 Austin Street, Newstead

Image credit: Bosco | Ranyhyn Laine

Newstead's Bosco is the go-to spot for those who believe bread courses deserve their own spotlight. With breads baked on-site by Brisbane's iconic Brewbakers, this Euro-inspired bar and grill—spearheaded by hospitality legend Simon Hill—offers more than just fresh carbs. Picture a sleek industrial shed transformed into a cosy haven with deep green velvet armchairs and an open kitchen showcasing a wood-fired oven and steel grill. 

The menu, ever-changing with the seasons and local produce, tempts with coastal delights like mussels in cider cream, king prawns in prawn head butter, and a heritage pork tomahawk. And yes, dessert is non-negotiable here. The Spanish-style French toast, torrijas, topped with spiced anglaise coffee cream, is a game-changer. If you're on a carb overload, fear not—the triple cream gelato with strawberry jam is a worthy alternative. 

Short Grain

15 Marshall Street, Fortitude Valley

Image credit: Shortgrain | Ranyhyn Laine

Martin Boetz, the culinary powerhouse of Longrain fame, made his 2023 comeback with Short Grain, a Thai haven in the heart of the Valley. Nestled in the heritage Stewart & Hemmant Building. With many of Boetz's signature Thai dishes on the menu, including crispy chicken skins with smoked river trout and green mango, there’s no surprise we’ve shortlisted Short Grain as one of the best openings to grace Brisbane in 2023.

Designed by Clui Design and put together by the impressive Lowry Group, Short Grain's light-drenched venue is where the magic happens. Dive into the likes of caramelised pork belly with chilli vinegar and yellow curry of five founder beef brisket, then wash it all down with Thai-inspired cocktails or explore the well-curated wine list. Boetz has returned the heat to the Sunshine State, one spicy Thai bite at a time.

Rich & Rare

97 Boundary Street, West End

a steak and wine on a table
Image credit: Rich & Rare | Markus Ravik

It's safe to say Rich & Rare has staked its claim as the sophisticated steak haven West End was missing. Born from the culinary minds behind Opa, Massimo, Yamas, and Fosh, this sleek eatery in West Village offers a steak lineup that's the stuff of carnivore dreams, boasting a variety of cuts from a modest 180g eye fillet to the show-stopping tomahawk. 

Helmed by Head Chef Felipe De Souza Oliviera, whose resume includes Michelin-starred establishments, Rich & Rare is not just about the steaks, it's an experience. Seated in a venue that strikes the perfect balance between relaxed and elegant, with indoor and outdoor spaces, here you can dive into fresh oysters, cold seafood platters, steak tartare, and truffle mushroom spaghetti. For a quicker bite, wagyu burgers and steak frites await, with desserts like rum baba cake sealing the deal. 


15 Manning Street, South Brisbane

Image credit: Midtown | Website

Martini enthusiasts, your new favourite watering hole has arrived in the form of Midtown, West End's chic new cocktail bar. With Daniel and Amelia Miletic, the masterminds behind One Fish Two Fish, steering the ship, Midtown promises an intimate 40-seater experience that caters to every mood, whether you're craving the classic French martini or feeling adventurous. Better yet, the extensive martini menu offers not just single sips but also flights for the indecisive. 

But Midtown isn't just a one-trick pony—classic cocktails, beer, wine, and spirits join the party. And let's talk nibbles–whether you're after a snack or a full-on feast, the menu here has you covered. From shareable charcuterie and seacuterie boards to indulgent treats like mini lobster croissants and 10-hour BBQ bourbon brisket, Midtown is a culinary journey that goes beyond the liquid delights. 

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The Wolf

260 Queen Street, Brisbane City

interior of new Brisbane restaurant the wolf
Image credit: The Wolf | Supplied

Brisbane’s culinary scene was set ablaze with the arrival of The Wolf, a multifaceted gem in the heart of the CBD that's more than just a dining destination—it's an aesthetic marvel. Owner Fabian Rebelo, no stranger to Brisbane's hospitality realm with the success of Stanton Cafe & Bar, has outdone himself with this Mediterranean-inspired haven that will transport you to the soulful eateries of Madrid, Barcelona, and Florence.

Step through its doors and you'll find yourself in the sleek restaurant and bar adorned with a stunning red-tile marble bar. Start with freshly shucked oysters and sea scallops saltimbocca before diving into Euro-inspired delights like braised wagyu beef cheek gnocchi and swordfish ceviche. Larger plates, including quail with wild grain and chorizo stuffing and blanquette of Tasmanian rock lobster, beckon for a culinary journey that's as visually pleasing as it is delectable. 


48 Burnett Lane, Brisbane City

Image credit: Antico | NIRA Creative

Brisbane's bar scene underwent a seismic shift this year with the departure of Super Whatnot, but fear not, as the space in Burnett Lane is reborn as Antico—a haven for the discerning cocktail enthusiast. Helmed by the masterminds behind Death & Taxes and Dr Gimlette, namely Belinda and Blake Ward and Martin and Wiebke Lange, Antico is a sophisticated retreat that pays homage to classic cocktails and high-end spirits, with a nod to Italian influences.

Hidden behind a grungy entrance, the venue's moody ambience unfolds into a space that's a far cry from its Super Whatnot days. A handcrafted tiled floor and a gleaming chandelier above the black marble bar set the tone for luxury, while dark leather booths create intimate sunken seating areas. Antico's menu is concise but potent, featuring concoctions like the 'If You Are Not Into Yoga,' a pina colada-inspired delight served in an uber-cute tiki cup. With just two snack options–bruschetta or buffalo mozzarella with mortadella–Antico proves that sometimes, less is, indeed, more.


56 King Street, Bowen Hills

Image credit: Claw | Supplied

Bowen Hills just got a whole lot more claw-some with the arrival of Claw, the colossal creation from Potentia Leisure taking over the iconic space once occupied by Welcome To Bowen Hills on King Street. Drawing inspiration from classic California crab shacks, Claw boasts a staggering 1000 seats both inside and outside in the vibrant laneway, all adorned with an eclectic array of Americana on the walls.

While the California vibes set the scene, the menu takes a flavorful turn towards the Southern, featuring tacos, Texas beef brisket, burgers, ribs, and crabs served by the bucket. Down them with an impressive lineup of craft beers, wines, spirits, slushie cocktails, and beer tower options. And while Claw may be a sports bar, the cocktail game here is potent, boasting liquid apple pies, root beer floats, and a margarita lineup that ensures your thirst can be quenched in style.

Sunsets Rooftop

95 Linton Street, Kangaroo Point

Image credit: Sunsets Rooftop | Alex O Creative Studio

Raising the bar–quite literally–for rooftop bars everywhere is Sunsets Rooftop, where the desert-inspired interiors will have you in a state of constant oohs and aahs. But it's not just the aesthetics—the location is a double whammy. On one side, sports aficionados can soak in a bird's eye view of the Gabba, while the other side offers up a one of the best city skyline vistas in Brisbane, a jaw-dropping panorama that cements Sunsets Rooftop as the go-to spot for catching a sunset.

Mediterranean vibes create the perfect setting for sipping on a coconut margarita or equally refreshing cocktail creation, while the food menu has options for light bites or a full-blown Mediterranean feast. Small plates like baked brie with honey, chargrilled red pepper muhammara, and fried cauliflower with tahini lemon sauce set the stage for proteins like slow-roasted lamb shoulder and marinated chicken skewers. 


39 Hercules Street, Hamilton

Image credit: Fosh | Markus Ravik

This list needed a splash of coastal charm, so we brought in Fosh, the latest creation from the culinary masterminds behind Opa, Massimo and Yamas. A seafood sanctuary adorned with a jaw-dropping $3 million Hamptons-inspired fit-out, it’s also perched right on the river for uninterrupted water views. The elegant stone palette, plush seating, floor-to-ceiling drapes, and al fresco dining area set the stage for relaxed meals with a scenic backdrop.

Here you can indulge in nostalgia-inducing fish finger sandwiches and cured ocean trout with labneh before diving into hot or cold seafood platters, Singapore chilli mud crabs, or 1kg pots of mussels in white wine and garlic sauce. Not a seafood enthusiast? There’s enough to go on without, including hefty steaks, twice-cooked chicken, and sides like Paris mash or fried greens. And for those seeking a more casual affair, Fosh Tails next door serves up classic fish and chips, prawn buckets, and more.


740 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley

Image credit: Tama | Ranyhyn Laine

Residing on the ground floor of the chic new GPO, alongside The Tax Office and The Gatsby, TAMA emerges as a beacon of opulence in Brisbane's dining scene, beckoning patrons to indulge in the golden era of fine dining. The ambience at TAMA exudes sophistication, with white tablecloths and soft-spoken servers setting the stage for an exquisite experience. 

Executive Chef Richard Ousby, formerly of Stokehouse fame, leads the culinary charge with a menu of Euro-style delights cooked over a Josper coal oven. Picture caviar buns, sublime beef tartare, juicy tomahawk steaks and crab bisque linguini. Whether you're opting for a decadent fine dining affair or just craving a hearty bowl of their signature spag bol paired with a glass of wine, TAMA promises an experience where every detail is crafted with finesse. 

The Gatsby Lounge

740 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley

Image credit: The Gatsby Lounge | Supplied 

Spend a night in the roaring 20s at The Gatsby Lounge, the pièce de résistance among the trio of ultra-sophisticated venues inside the new GPO. Drawing inspiration from the opulent soirees of the golden age, The Gatsby will have you enchanted by every detail of the utterly jaw-dropping space, from the backlit marble wall behind the bar to the glittering chandeliers suspended from the ceiling. 

Sink into purple velvet lounges and peruse the 70-page drinks menu as you eye up the meticulously restored original 1887 vault transformed into a locker room for bottles of vintage whisky. The extensive menu reads like a coffee table book, featuring three pages dedicated solely to 1920s-inspired cocktails. Build your own Manhattan, negroni, or old-fashioned, and indulge in a selection of exclusive champagne bottles if you're feeling a little more like Jay Gatsby than usual. 

La De Lah

6A Little Stanley Street, South Brisbane

blue nasi goreng at new brisbane restaurant la de lah
Image credit: La De Lah | Ranyhyn Laine

Embark on a Malaysian gastronomic journey at South Bank's latest gem, La De Lah. Chef Eugene Lee, weaving his culinary expertise all the way from Malaysia to Brissie, showcases a menu reflecting his heritage with inventive flair. The sleek venue, blending South East Asian flavours with local produce, combines comfy red booths and outdoor tables for people-watching. 

Whether opting for a multi-course feast with crafted cocktails or a quick lunch from funky stacked metal tins, La De Lah caters to every taste. Indulge in DIY bug tail bao buns, spanner crab tartlets, and kingfish sashimi, paving the way for hearty dishes like slow-cooked Angus short rib and the signature blue nasi goreng. Dessert steals the spotlight with an ube ice cream sandwich, perfectly paired with classic cocktails featuring a Malaysian twist.


70 James Street, Fortitude Valley

Image credit: Carmen | Instagram

Step into the boujee heart of the Valley and experience Carmen Tequileria, a Mexican-inspired haven from Potentia Leisure, the team behind Lina Rooftop and Soko, that draws inspiration from the sophisticated, boho vibes of Tulum. With curved archways, whitewashed walls, and neutral tones, Carmen sets the stage for a tequila-infused adventure.

Unlike your run-of-the-mill Mexican joints, Carmen offers elevated fare, with starters like watermelon ensalada, Mexican halloumi, and popcorn chicken. Delight in teriyaki duck tacos, and charred corn riblettes, setting the tone for larger plates, including saucy beef short rib rendang and shaved pork loin. Tequila enthusiasts will have plenty to revel in, with creative concoctions that taste as good as they look.

The Lex

81 North Quay, Brisbane City

Image credit: The Lex | Facebook

Say hello to The Lex, W Brisbane's answer to the departure of Three Blue Ducks, filling the culinary void with New York-style sophistication and a Brisbane twist. Overlooking the Brisbane River, this revamped terrace-style venue, designed by Nic Graham, seamlessly blends a classic Queenslander feel with modern elegance, featuring a burgundy ceiling, olive-panelled walls, and chic rattan chairs.

The menu at The Lex is a playful take on familiar favourites, boasting a lobster roll, tater tots with Avruga caviar, and a must-try hiramasa kingfish, however the star attraction is the dry-aged tomahawk steak, complemented by mac 'n' cheese and a tableside-tossed Caesar salad. Don't skip dessert—the peanut butter chocolate bombe is a temptation you won't want to resist. 


146 Baroona Road, Paddington

Image credit: Patio | Supplied

Paddington’s Patio is the epitome of Queensland vibes—chilling on a sun-drenched patio cracking open a cold one, courtesy of the brilliant minds behind Range Brewing in Newstead. Channelling the essence of an open-air pavilion, this charming bar blends rustic brick, dark oak timber, and rich burgundy tiles for an inviting atmosphere, offering a choice between cushy booths and window bar tables.

With 10 taps pouring Range Brewing's signature beers and two taps serving up collaborative wines with LATTA Vino, Patio caters to all tastes, featuring a curated selection of wines, spirits, and cocktails. Stick your forks into an Italian-inspired menu, a nod to Range Brewing's famed Jacopo's Pizza, offering cheesy pizzas, cacio e pepe suppli, and meatballs with focaccia.

The Nixon Room

181 Robertson Street, Fortitude Valley

Image credit: The Nixon Room | Supplied 

Tucked away in Fortitude Valley's Robertson Street, The Nixon Room is the epitome of a hidden gem. Spot the concealed brass door in the fig-lined alley, give it a gentle push, and enter this exclusive, signless lounge bar, limited to just 25 people at a time—talk about exclusive. 

Inside the dimly-lit space, sink your tush into leather lounges, order creative snacks, and indulge in endless cocktails, with martinis taking centre stage. While the concise menu also features other tantalising concoctions and wines by the glass, The Nixon Room's allure extends beyond drinks. If the snug setting leaves you craving more, a connecting door leads to Essa, where inventive eats await. 


111 Mary Street, Brisbane City

Image credit: Settimo | Facebook

Guy Grossi, the culinary maestro behind several of Melbourne's iconic eateries, has graced Brisbane with Settimo, a coastal-inspired sanctuary located within The Westin in the CBD. Drawing inspiration from the Amalfi Coast, the venue feels like an Italian summer vacation, with terracotta tiles, textured stone, and contrasting timber furnishings, adorned with pops of pastel blue and lemon yellow, to create a picturesque setting across multiple dining areas.

Settimo's menu showcases Grossi's signature coastal-inspired dishes, harmonising Italian flair with fresh local produce. Start your culinary journey with the pizza fritte—deep-pizza dough enveloping gooey provolone and spinach—and a selection of antipasti. On the pasta side, beef onion ragu and lemon butter spaghetti lead the charge, while mains boast Grossi's signature slow-cooked Papa's Lamb. Don't forget to save room for tiramisu. 

Ippin Dining

97 Boundary Street, West End

Image credit: Ippin Dining | Supplied

Just when you thought West End's West Village couldn't get any tastier, here comes Ippin Dining, a luxurious 140-seat venue overlooking The Common. Helmed by Kenny Lee, Ippin Dining introduces a sophisticated Japanese dining experience enhanced by natural timber furnishings, black and white marble tabletops, and plush blue circular booths.

Ippin Dining's menu boasts a blend of traditional and creative Japanese dishes, spotlighting local meat and seafood. Munch on Moreton Bay bug tempura and snow crab rice croquettes to start, followed by a selection of sashimi from the raw bar. The robata grill offers fiery options like miso eggplant, lamb cutlets and wagyu sirloin, while complementing the exquisite eats is an equally extensive drink menu featuring wine, sake and expertly crafted cocktails.

Babylon Garden

145 Eagle Street, Brisbane CBD

Image credit: Babylon Garden | Markus Ravik

When we saw Babylon in the CBD, we thought wow, Mantle Group have really outdone themselves. But then they completely swept us off our feet with the reveal of Babylon Garden, its Mediterranean-inspired bar counterpart. Flexing jaw-dropping views of the Story Bridge, Babylon Gardens beckons patrons with two al fresco terraces, making it the ultimate summer locale.

Dotted with palm trees and lush greenery amid cream-coloured brick columns, Babylon Garden accommodates up to 500 guests, offering high and low green marble-topped tables and plush leather banquette seating. After securing a comfortable spot, hit the 10-metre brass bar for a cocktail—the libation choices are as diverse as the riverside scenery. While the open-air bar is an idyllic setting for drinks, Babylon Gardens takes it a step further with a meze-focused eats menu too.


191 Wharf Street, Spring Hill

a plate of sashimi at new brisbane restaurant komeyui
Image credit: Komeyui | Facebook

Renowned as one of Melbourne's best sushi and sashimi venues, Komeyui has ever so kindly extended its culinary prowess to Spring Hill, Brisbane. Standing tall at Wharf Street, the restaurant's minimalist architectural approach offers a tranquil escape of grey tile floors, light timber furnishings, and an extensive sushi bar—the perfect canvas for the delicate Japanese artistry plated here.

For an indulgent experience, the omakase options beckon, but if autonomy is your preference, the a la carte menu boasts an array of locally sourced seafood, while rice, a critical component in sushi, is expertly prepared using a traditional cast iron rice cooker, the Hagama. Beyond sushi, explore small bites like nori crunch, garlic shrimp and fried chicken karaage, and mains like wagyu foie gras rice, braised black pork belly, and Josper charcoal oven-grilled grain-fed striploin. 


166 Hardgrave Road, West End

Image credit: Pilloni | Supplied

Keen to uncover the diverse and delectable world of Italian cuisine beyond pizza and pasta? Look no further to Pilloni. Owners Andrea Contin and Valentina Vigni, known from La Lupa, have fashioned a dining experience inspired by Contin's Sardinian upbringing, resulting in one of our favourite new Brisbane restaurants of 2023. 

Pilloni's four distinct areas, including a fresco bar, a dining room with a view of the kitchen's fire pit, a curtained balcony, and a private dining area, create an atmosphere reminiscent of a warm Italian bed and breakfast with a distinct 50s vibe. Start your culinary journey with snacks like 48-hour fermented focaccia or charred octopus with potato foam, then delve into culurgiones stuffed with potato, and pecorino in tomato sauce, or goat shoulder ragu. 

Da Biuso

Brett's Wharf, Hamilton

Image credit: Da Biuso | Supplied

Though Da Biuso is Brisbane's only mobile fine dining venue housed inside a meticulously converted school bus, we guarantee you it's nothing like a rushed breakfast on the bus ride to school. Instead, you’ll dine on an exquisite Mediterranean-inspired degustation that transcends the novelty factor of dining in a restaurant on wheels. 

Currently stationed at Bretts Wharf in Hamilton, hop on the intimate 12-seater and you'll find yourself transported to the glamour of an old-world train dining car, complete with sheer drapes, golden glass lamps, and white leather seats—a 1930s train journey across the continent captured in every detail. Co-owner and Head Chef Biagio Biuso's culinary artistry transforms simple dishes into masterpieces for a culinary adventure that embraces innovation while staying rooted in Mediterranean traditions.  

Bar Rosa

77 Grey Street, South Brisbane

a plate of burrata and a cocktail
Image credit: Bar Rosa | Instagram

If you've ever tried snagging a table at Julius Pizzeria, you know it's like playing pizza roulette. Fret not, pizza lovers. The brains behind Julius have hatched Bar Rosa, a slick 35-seater Italian wine bar just a stone's throw away on Grey Street, offering an intimate space adorned with marble, wood panelling, and fluted glass. 

As you'd expect from the team behind Julius and Becoffino, here you'll find a menu of Italian classics and bites, with Enrique Rosa, the kitchen maestro, guaranteeing every dish is a hit. Picture yourself digging into veal and pork meatballs or pizza fritta with burrata—all perfect pairings with a glass of ever-changing Italian vino. As for cocktails, Bar Rosa has classics like negronis and its own signatures. Beyond being Julius' waiting room, Bar Rosa is a star on its own–you won’t regret giving it a chance.

Looking for more dining and drinking inspiration? Head here: 

Image credit: Establishment 203 | Supplied 

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