Do you feel that? The temperature is coasting into the 30's, afternoon thunderstorms have returned, and the daylight savings debate rages once again. Add to this the sudden emergence of everyone wearing thongs, and it’s clear that summer has settled into Brisbane.
If the thought of summer has your mouth watering for a cool beverage, read ahead for our top picks of the best Brisbane bars for summer drinking.
Limes has everything covered for your summer drinking sesh; killer drinks menu, two hot tubs, live DJ’s and an open-air cinema. More than just a bar, Limes is a rooftop sanctuary where you can knock back a couple of cocktails, soak up the sunlight, and savour the Brisbane cityscape into the early hours of the morning.
If you’re like me, you’ll be dedicating a lot of time to the beautiful beaches of the east coast this summer. If after hitting the waves you find yourself peckish and nursing a spot of sunburn, make your way to Justin Lane for a grown-up pizza party to satisfy your hunger. You provide the company; they’ll provide the pizza and beers. And boy is that beach sunset a nice backdrop.
As the days get longer you are guaranteed a front seat for Brisbane’s best sunsets, martini in hand, seated at the uber cool, new bar Sixteen Antlers. We seriously recommend you suggest Sixteen Antlers for Friday arvo drinks if you want to impress your boss and secure that Christmas bonus.
Soleil Pool Bar
If your summer plans involve getting tipsy and tanned at a swanky poolside bar, Soleil has your back. Pull up a sun lounger, whip out the bikini, and drink your way through the extensive cocktail list at Soleil Pool Bar. Don’t forget the sunscreen!
Elixir Rooftop Bar
Elixir knows how to throw a party, which is why we keep finding ourselves there every weekend. With the evenings warming up, now is the best time to start working your way through their ridiculously good cocktail menu (The Twisted Spring Punch is out of this world).
Eleven Rooftop Bar
Eleven is a destination bar for those nights when you want to dress to the nines, soak in good atmosphere, and savour the cityscape from a seat in the sky. If you’re after a ritzy, classy evening, purchase a bottle of bubbly and enjoy the sparkling skyline of Brisbane City.
Located atop Four Points by Sheraton, 30 stories high, Sazerac pays homage to the speakeasy bars of old world New Orleans with a mouth-watering drinks list and an expertly constructed share-style menu. You could easily spend the entire evening at Sazerac, and with fairy floss garnishes and a wine list that makes me weak at the knees, it’s not hard to see why.
Lock ‘N’ Load Bistro
Lush, green, breezy, sunny. Why wouldn’t you want to spend your Saturday afternoon at Lock ‘N’ Load sharing Pimms by the jug with some mates? Whether it’s after work, an afternoon drink, or a couple of beers before a big night, Lock ‘N’ Load always delivers the goods.
Brisbane Brewing Co
If you happen to know any beer aficionados then you’ve probably already heard that Brisbane Brewing Co is one of the best craft brewers around. With 11 craft beers on tap and over 50 in the fridges, you’re going to need a minute to make your pick. This isn’t a problem though, because with the fairy lights and industrial-esque décor, this is the perfect summer hangout to wile away your afternoons.
The Regatta Hotel
The Regatta is a Brisbane institution and summer is when they really shine. Overlooking the Brisbane River, the Regatta is perfect for catching up with mates, winding down after work, or celebrating something special. Treat yourself to a lazy Sunday session in the courtyard, but don’t blame us if you show up to work on Monday nursing a hangover.
Riverbar & Kitchen
Riverbar is a long time Brissy fave, and with uninterrupted views of the Brisbane River and William Jolly Bridge, it’s not hard to see why. Day drinking in the summer sunshine can easily turn into a juicy night out, especially after a couple of jugs of white sangria with elderflower liqueur...
The Hope & Anchor
With a nautical by nature interior, the kind of bar menu that will impress even the finickiest of foodies, and bartenders that know how to chat just as well as they pour a beer, The Hope & Anchor is everything we want and need in a bar. Fuelling my theory that Paddington is an antique, inner-city haven, The Hope & Anchor is the easiest way to wile away summer evenings with friends.
The gastronomic geniuses behind Gerard’s Bistro have blessed us with Gerard’s Bar, a uique venue focusing on in-house production of artisan charcuterie carefully paired with a mouth-watering drinks menu. With decadent offerings such as prosciutto, salame, Mojama cured tuna, and cured pork fat, Gerard’s will satiate your hunger and impress your pals.
New kid on the block Holey Moley is the answer to all your summer-socialising questions: Where do I take my tinder date? Christmas party? Catch up with pals? Whatever events are on your summer horizon, Holey Moley is ready to deliver the good times. With beer and cider flowing freely, food trucks galore, ping-pong, and an 18-hole putt-putt course across two stories of an old church, you’d be crazy not to hit them up.
Photo Credit: Ariana Gillire