Essential Christmas dining, sassy new Italian, Brisbane’s best croissants + riverside picnics, your next Sunday brunch – The ten things you need to know about food in Brisbane this week, all in Feast on Brisbane #42 include a new wine masterclass, Albion’s latest opening, a new noodle experience and where to find artisan gelato.
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Sasso Italiano Negroni
* 10 OF THE BEST BRISBANE BITES IN FEAST ON BRISBANE #41
Check it twice
A heads up for anyone thinking of dining out for Christmas, do make a booking soon. I have a list that gives you 32 options for Christmas dining, but the venues are booking out fast. So don’t be the person who desperately searches for Christmas dining on Christmas Eve because you will not find many options. Here is the list – Best Christmas dining in Brisbane 2021 – check it twice!
Sassy new Italian moves into Woolloongabba
Sasso Italiano, Brisbane’s newest neighbourhood Italian bar and trattoria serving unforgettable Italian eats alongside a natural wine and rich negroni menu (I do love a good negroni) has officially opened its doors in Woolloongabba’s growing South City Square precinct. Sasso will serve up family-style old-school Italian in a cool and contemporary space – designed to reignite the presence and passion of the USA’s energetic Italian eateries in the ’70s.
In the kitchen is Amalfi Coast-born Head Chef Gabriele Di Landri, who has worked at some of Australia’s most exciting restaurants, including Dolphin Hotel, Chiswick Restaurant and Aria. Di Landri will be working closely with multi-hatted Chef & Culinary Partner Ian Curley, who will oversee Sasso’s open-plan kitchen. Sasso is the first venue by former Ovolo and QT F&B Directors Vincent Lombino and Jared Thibault – who have been responsible for some of Australia’s most impressive food and beverage concepts. The duo will launch a collection of culinary destinations in the vibrant South City Square precinct by May 2022.
Find Sasso Italiano at 4/148 Logan Road, Woolloongabba. I’m dining there soon and will report back.
Albion’s newest opening
It’s been a long time coming, but the doors at Craft’d Grounds at Albion are finally opening. What will you find here? Enjoy a freshly roasted coffee at Seven Miles Coffee Roasters and a locally brewed craft beer at Brewtide. But, there’s more to come. Find it at 35 Collingwood Street, Albion.
👍 recycling initiative
A huge thumbs up to Harris Farm Markets for a recycling initiative that leaps ahead to actually reduce waste with purpose. Re-purposeful Picks is a new range made from recycling perishable food, including o premium products with a longer shelf life. It’s waste fruit upcycled into smoothies, excess kale made into chips, and bread converted into breadcrumbs. The conversion takes place at the store level so each location can reduce daily waste. There are 30 products. Now we just need to get the big supermarket players to do the same. Well done, Harris Farm! Here’s what you need to know about their West End store.
You asked for it
It seems Brisbane likes a lazy Sunday brunch. Now there’s a big surprise! La Dolce Vita Brunch at Fiume Rooftop Bar has been extended through summer. Expect sunshine, an Italian-inspired feast, cocktails and incredible views. Find it at Crystalbrook Vincent and check out what it’s like to stay at this hip, sustainable hotel. Available every Sunday at 10 am and 12.30 pm for $115 per person. Bookings are essential, and tickets are limited. Brisbane local? Join Crystalbrook Local Brisbane and use code LOCAL to enjoy 15% off La Dolce Vita brunch simply by being a Brisbane resident. You’ve got to love that!
Now we are 10
Who would have thought it was 10 years since River Quay at South Bank became a thing? This incredible lineup of restaurants has hardly changed since its opening, which is a feat in itself. They will be celebrating on the weekend of November 27 and 28 with premium seated picnic dining experiences, takeaway picnic hampers and restaurant dining. Expect oysters, seafood platters, Prosecco, and more! There’ll be various seating times starting from 12pm through the afternoon. Check out the offers, and bookings can be made direct via each restaurant’s website – Aquitaine Brasserie, Popolo Italian Kitchen, The Jetty, River Quay Fish and Otto Ristorante.
It’s all about the noodles
You know all about ramen and udon noodles. But, it’s time to upskill your Japanese food knowledge with healthy, handmade soba (buckwheat) noodles. Soba Shimbashi is a new Japanese Restaurant at Pinelands Plaza in Sunnybank Hills. It is where patrons can see specially imported buckwheat groats from Tasmania milled to make their fresh soba noodles through a custom-made meal window.
The restaurant is the first for Chef Kazuhiro (Kazu) Uemura, who trained under a soba master in Melbourne before becoming one himself. In addition to its soba noodle focus, Soba Shimbashi also serves Tempura, Sushi, Sashimi and Teriyaki. The most popular dishes on the menu are the duck meals (Duck Soba, Duck Seiro, Kamo Shio (Sauteed Duck Fillet), tempura meals (Tempura Soba, Tempura Seiro, Assorted Tempura) and Nasu Dengaku (Eggplant Dengaku).
Soba Shimbashi opens from 11.30 am to 2 pm for lunch and 5.30 pm to 8.30 pm for dinner Tuesday to Saturday, with Thursday only open for lunch. Pinelands Plaza at Sunnybank Hills has a mix of 25 primarily Asian cafes and restaurants that are worth exploring.
It comes as no surprise to me that The Courier-Mail writers Anooska Tucker-Evans and Alison Walsh have rated Christian Jacques Artisan Boulanger at Kangaroo Point as a joint top winner along with heavyweight player Lune Crossanterie at South Brisbane in their top 10. Christian Jacques is a winner on price as well with their croissants priced at $4.80 in comparison to Lune’s pricy $6.20. The queues are much shorter too! While you are picking up your Christian Jacques croissant, explore Kangaroo Point with these top tips. I am a little surprised that there was no mention of the Japanese inspired croissants at Kurimu on level E of the Myer Centre. Their flavours alone – original, Charcoal with Custard Cream, Salted Egg, Mentaiko (Salted Cod Roe) and Chicken Jerky, and Floss, are worth exploring.
When you just need gelato
Good news for gelato lovers around Northgate. Flour and Chocolate now offer a new artisan gelato, Knead Gelato. Expect flavours such as Eton mess, fruit mince pie, and mint with dark chocolate.
Learn from master winemaker Mike Hayes with The Philosophy of Wine Masterclass at Balancing Heart Vinyard on the Granite Belt. Mike will enthral you with his stories on a 90-minute walk around the vineyard every Saturday afternoon starting at 1 pm. It is followed by a masterclass on the sensory evaluation of wine.
Plan your next escape
Port Douglas is calling
It’s the sort of place that people visit but never want to leave. While you are making up your mind whether to make your holiday in Port Douglas more permanent, here are the restaurants, cafes and bars you should explore – the Best Port Douglas Restaurants and Bars
Only in Japan
One of the big attractions of visiting Japan is the quirky and sometimes outlandish things that the Japanese offer to tourists. Now that there is talk of a travel bubble try this list against your travel itch and see which ones do it for you. I’m lining up for sand bathing. Here are 21 Unique must do Japan experiences.
Everything you need to know about Christmas Ham – Feast on Brisbane #42 Recipe of the week
With Christmas coming, you really need to start thinking about food, particularly which ham will grace your table. I’m very keen on ham and have compiled a long list of tips on how to choose, bake and carve that perfect leg. Check it out – Everything you need to know about Christmas ham.
What happened last week in Brisbane? Check Feast on Brisbane #41