The Best New Italian Restaurants in Brisbane

By AJ James
28th Jan 2015

Luciano Pavarotti (large bearded Italian man with a stellar voice) once said, “One of the very best things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.” And good lord, was he bang on the Euro there.

And even more so when it comes to what we’re sitting down to, for when it comes to devoting attention to eating, we can think of no cuisine that’s better suited than that of Luciano’s own—Italian, and Brisbane's Italian restaurants are up there with the best.

Pizza, pasta and every course in between. It’s not just delicious, but requires attention—look away at your peril and you’ll end up with a meatball in your lap.

And while at TUL we’re fiends for pulling up stumps and heading back to old haunts, it’s good to share the love and give a shout out to the newbies on our city’s cucina italiana scene.

This is our pick of the best new(ish) Italian restaurants in Brisbane. So, here’s to stopping what we’re doing, giving a new spot a go, and sitting down to devote the time to eat. More of that Parmesan cheese, please.

Locanda Osteria

Fortitude Valley

Tucked away in the M&A lane you’ll find this gem of Brisbane Italian restaurant. And not only do they have one of our favourite Italian dishes—Parma ham and rockmelon (!), Locanda's pastas are top notch too. Try the gnocchi with the guanciale. It’s from the pork’s cheek, and much deserved of the title ‘bacon porn’.

Julius Pizzeria

South Bank

You’d be right for thinking, ‘this feels hauntingly like Beccofino’, because Julius is their latest offering, and one of the best Italian restaurants in Brisbane. Those clever buggers cloned the original and put it on the other side of the river, so the southern slickers need not travel through traffic and across the bridges for their duck ragu hit. An easy entry on any ‘best Italian restaurants in Brisbane’ list.

Coppa Spuntino

Brisbane CBD

As a trusted dining enthusiast put it, ‘the stuffed squid is unreal’. And so too is the gnocchi. Plus the whole brand identity of the project and interiors at this Brisbane Italian restaurant is super slick. And the wine list from Australian and Italian vineyards, dangerously tempting. Coppa is a new favourite for Italian in the Brisbane CBD.

Jamie’s Italian

Brisbane CBD

Sure, yes, it’s what you’d call a chain. But it’s a goodie, and the food is solid too. The beef at Jamie’s Italian is pasture fed (you’re so much better off eating grass fed over grain), and they make an effort to sustainably source their fish—you can’t fault that. Or the tuna fusilli.


 Garden City

The line up of pastas at Vapiano's beaut' new Garden City restaurant is nothing short of a knock out (our pick is the homemade ravioli with rocket and ricotta in butter sauce and fresh cherry tomatoes). The pizza toppings aren’t all true to their Naples roots, but sometimes you really want a Hawaiian—albeit a gourmet one—and there is nothing wrong with that! And you can add chicken, beef, or prawns on to any of their salads, so those seeking something less carb centric (fools) will be appeased. This is a friendly and very tasty new addition to Brisbane Italian scene.

Psst! Want more of the best Italian restaurants in Brisbane? Search our directory here!

Image credit: Daniel Maddock

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