While the good folk at the Michelin Guide may continue to ignore us over here in Australia, that doesn’t mean our restaurant fare is any less worthy of a star or two. But if you’re desperately keen to sample Michelin star worthy fare without a lengthy trip abroad, there is a way you can, and it’s all thanks to the talented international chefs heading for our shores.
Ignoring the Michelin snub, a few of these chefs have made their way to Brisbane, and after cooking up a storm in international kitchens, some even earning their previous restaurants' Michelin stars, now dish up world-class feeds right here in the river city. Here’s where you’ll find them.
You may or may not be well acquainted with Vine, a New Farm favourite and well kept secret by regulars, but the venue recently changed hands, with the owner of Deer Duck Bistro taking over the reins. Along with the new owners has come a new, Italian-born Michelin-star worthy chef, Enzo Ninivaggi.
Having learnt to cook from his grandmother at a young age, Enzo has since worked at multiple Michelin starred restaurants around Italy and across Europe, but it was La Veranda del Color in Bardolino, Italy, that was awarded a star while he was in kitchen. Thanks to his Italian heritage, Enzo’s modern fare is still very much grounded in the past, and you’ll find authentic recipes much like those cooked by his grandmother on his menu—with a touch of playfulness and creativity. Order the Cacio è pepe ravioli with pecorino romano, ricotta, caramelised pear and brown sage butter, but make sure you leave room for a dessert of classic tiramisu.
Dan Arnold Restaurant
Hidden inside the Alex Perry Hotel and Apartments on Ann Street in Fortitude Valley is Dan Arnold Restaurant, a luxurious establishment with an open kitchen where nature meets creativity. Originally from Brisbane, Arnold returned home to open his first restaurant after working in France in Saint-Père's L'Esperance, which bears two Michelin stars. Having garnered a heft of skills under the tutelage of Marc Meneau, Arnold has returned to serve up distinctly Australian cuisine using techniques that reflect the traditions of his craft.
As such, every dish is a pure and delicate work of art crafted with utmost respect for the ingredients. The menu is ever-changing (however an ever-constant is their cheese trolley that can be customised to your liking—seriously, get on it) and all dishes are subject to change depending on market availability, but you can get a feel for the kind of stuff on offer by heading over to Restaurant Dan Arnold's website for a peek of the sample offerings.
Fusing modern Australian woodfired cooking techniques with a focus on seafood and plant-based dishes, Beaux Rumble is one of the stunning new venues to land in Ada Lane next to The Calile—and it’s also the culinary home of Michelin star-experienced Chef Alan Wise.
Australian-born, Wise honed his culinary chops at Dublin’s Michelin starred restaurant, Chapter One, then in New York at Michelin restaurants such as Rouge Tomate, Picholine, Juni and Public before taking over as Executive Chef at Rouge Tomate Chelsea, which earnt two Michelin stars with Wise at the helm. So what’s he cooking now? At Beaux Rumble you can expect to tuck into the likes of charred leeks with almond cream and truffle, grilled scallops with roasted enoki mushrooms, radicchio with sherry glazed shallots, squid with squid ink vinaigrette and pickled fennel, and smoked lamb neck with pea puree.
Meanwhile, want to know where the chefs eat in Brisbane? Head here.
Image credit: Larissa Drazic