Ask any local, and they’ll say times they are a-changin’ on the Sunny Coast.
No longer are peeps flocking to the city or the Goldy or Byron, as soon as they hit the big 1-8. And if they are, well, it’s not taking them long to head back to the land of the sun. And who could blame them!?
Not only are we known for our incredible beaches, a stunning hinterland and relaxed vibes, but the we’re also making a name for ourselves by dishing up a smorgasbord of cool cafes, awesome pop-up bars and sleek restaurants. And 2015 was one of the biggest years yet!
In the past 12 months, the coast has been on fire with new places popping up from Caloundra to Noosa to Nambour and the hinterland. To help you decipher those you’ve hit and those you need to chuck on your must-try list, we’ve gathered the best new openings on the Sunshine Coast. Pen and paper ready?
The super new La Canteena is the only one its kind on the Coast, and although the Maroochydore bar has only been open for a few weeks, we’ve already fallen hard for this cool courtyard establishment. Laidback beats, chilled staff, addictive margaritas and possibly the best Mexican nosh on the Coast, if you haven’t dropped in yet, you’re missing out! Serious siesta time takes place during the week, so these guys are only open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from afternoon till late.
Where: 19 Ocean Street, Maroochydore
They may have only opened in August this year, but it feels like Decisions has been around forever. Without their offerings of #superjunk and #superfood, we think we’d find it impossible to survive. Hell, how did we make it to 2015 without them!? Serving up some of the best breakfasts on the Sunshine Coast (their coconut chia pudding is delish!), if you haven’t already stopped by, flick on the GPS and find your way to this Birtinya café. Stat!
Where: Shop 4, 10 Capital Place, Birtinya
Super fresh Depot only started serving the mouths of Sunshine Coasters less than two weeks ago. And already, repeat customers are a thing! We think it’s because of their art-like Toast ‘N Toppings combinations—think: smashed avo with Persian feta, pistachios, pomegranate and lemon or smoked salmon with dill infused cream cheese, capers and lemon, served on seeded sourdough. So moreish, so good!
Where: Shop 4, 239 Gympie Terrace, Noosaville
When we shared news that a new handsome chap who went by the name of Whisky Boy had found a corner position along Gympie Terrace, you guys went bonkers (in a good way). And after tasting and drinking the goods first hand, we can’t really blame you. With over 40 whiskies gracing the bar shelves and an incredible menu on offer, this is one of the best restaurants in Noosa to open this year.
Where: Corner of Thomas Street and Gympie Terrace, Noosaville
Hunting for the best breakfast in Maroochydore? Well then, hearing “all-day brekkie menu” at The Nines will sound like the sweetest of melodies to your grouchy stomach. Throwing open their doors in November, this café took a risk with its homemaker centre position. And we love a café that’s not afraid to do something a little different.
Where: Shop 17A Sunshine Homemaker Centre, Maroochydore
Contact: 07 5443 4463
Hello Harry in Caloundra
We ALL know Harry and that he lives in Maroochydore. BUT did you know he’s also just nabbed a prime spot in Caloundra, directly across the road from Bulcock Beach? Hello Harry Caloundra serves all your favourites, so you needn’t worry you’re going to miss out because you bypass Ocean Street to try out the newly opened digs.
Where: 30 The Esplanade, Caloundra
Contact: 07 5492 7759
So much has been happening in little old Nambour, and back in July drool-worthy burgers came to town in a big way with the arrival of DownTown. This industrial-style burger house serves up buns towered with free range chicken, locally-sourced beef and lip-smacking sauces. There’s also a Secret Burger, perfect for when you’re trying to impress on a first date. Your maybe-lover will totally think you’re a risk-taker, ‘cause that shit is all kinds of sexy.
Where: 99 Currie Street, Nambour
Contact: 07 5441 1587
August was the month something pretty spesh happened at Sunshine Plaza…Made. Fine Sandwiches started whipping up some of the freshest sangas on the Coast. We’re all over the Foul Mouthed Mexican and the Belly Rub. No other sandwich will taste as good, ever again. Bugger!
Where: Sunshine Plaza River Walk, Maroochydore
Contact: 07 5443 3313
Hand of Fatima
It’s a pretty safe call to say that Coolum locals went into breakdown mode when Carlos closed the doors of Little Lane Espresso. So when he opened a new café just months later in nearby Peregian Beach, the sheer joy of being able to drink the man’s coffee and munch Middle Eastern cuisine again was indescribable. Hand of Fatima—it’s worth jumping in your car for. There, we said it again!
Where: 2/4 Kingfisher Drive, Peregian Beach
We love eating healthily on the Coast. Or at least most of the time we do. So, Ak-Tiv Bar on Duporth Avenue, is totally our cup of (green) tea when we’re feelin’ the healthy vibes coming on. Serving up some of the best breakfasts in Maroochydore, it’s hard to remember life pre-2015 and pre-Ak-Tiv.
Where: Shop 1, M1 Duporth Avenue, Maroochydore
If you’re familiar with the old airport run from Noosa, and prefer to dally down the coast rather then take the motorway, then you may have noticed newcomer Cuba Street. Found along David Low Way at Marcoola, this roadside café is our new favourite pit stop for that one last precious coffee before hopping on a flight.
Where: 970 David Low Way, Marcoola
November was the month that Noosa Junction got a new restaurant with the arrival of Padstows. This spacious restaurant and bar is open from the early hours until late, serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and some of the tastiest cocktails we’ve ever gifted to our livers.
Where: 1 Sunshine Beach Road, Noosa
Another VERY new café that’s rocking the Sunny Coast coffee drinkers is Guru Life. Opening earlier this month, these guys also run famed The Pocket. What makes Guru special? First, it’s outta the way location just makes us want to go there, and no we don’t know why we feel that way. And secondly, ‘cause Guru Life is also a roastery…so if you like the coffee all the way down in Moffat Beach, imagine how good it’s going to taste at the source. Mmm-hmm!
Where: 522 Petrie Creek Road, Rosemount
If you’re a weekend marketeer, then you may have spotted Scott Mathais at his Noosa Farmers Market stall on Sundays. The Sunny Coast raw food advocate has just opened GoVegan in Noosaville, serving organic, raw and vegan food to healthy eaters (or wannabes like us). What are we loving? The fresh as salads served in wooden bento boxes for lunch. Pick and choose what you want (so we’ll skip anything with mushrooms, please) and then pay by weight. For those where no meal is complete without a sweet, try one of the raw donuts!
Where: 6 Thomas Street, Noosaville
There’s no way we could tie up a “best openings” list without mention of Sunshine Coast donut maestros—the Donut Boyz. It seems unreal (and by that we mean NOT real), that Donut Boyz only rolled their way onto the scene in early 2015 with the opening of a storefront in Maroochydore’s Big Top. These sugary treats took off instantly, and by the end of the year, the franchise will have grown to include five donut-serving shops across Brisbane. Now, that’s impressive, and it all started on the Coast!
Where: Shop 5 12-20 Ocean street, Maroochydore