New Shanghai - Queens Plaza lower level 226 Queen St - Called in for dinner - a quickish one. This place has plenty of choices available from an extensive menu. Started with the sweet and sour pork rib in dark vinegar sauce - so good. This was lovely - the thick sauce had tang. Then moved on to a serving of the steamed pork belly buns which were quite big. The pork was so tender and the buns were light and fluffy. Finally it was a serving of mini pork short soup that came with ten small wontons in it. The soup was tasty and the wontons were as well. You can get good food here at decent prices.
Malt Dining - 28 Market St Brisbane - Dropped in here on the way to dinner for a quick drink and just had to try some of their food as the choices looked so good. Treated it as a pre-entree so grabbed the Spring Rolls of Peking Duck that came served with rice vinegar dipping sauce. Thought it would be a small serving but it turned out to be quite substantial with five large rolls arriving and plenty of tangy tasty dipping sauce. The drink list was extensive too - just grabbed some Chain of Fire Merlot but there were plenty of others available.
Funk Coffee and Food - 55 Elizabeth St Brisbane CBD - It's a long thin place. Only grabbed a coffee here so hard to say much other than it was a decent cuppa that was made quickly.
Jackpot Dining - City II - Brisbane CBD - This is of course the sister restaurant to Jackpot City. The food here is fast, fresh, cheap and actually very tasty. We shared between two the salt and pepper squid ($10.00) the crispy beef ($10.00), spring rolls (about $6.00 I think) and prawn dumplings (about $4.00). You order at the front counter, get given a buzzer and find a table. It buzzes as each dish is ready to collect from another counter around the side. The food comes pretty quickly here and staff keep the place very clean. All the food was extremely fresh and tasty - in fact much better than perhaps we expected. Lunch for two with two large sift drinks was only $38.00. It's a good place to grab a quick and appetising meal.
The Villager Hotel - Brisbane CBD - The Villager is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and we were passing around breakfast time. It looked reasonably popular with quite a few people inside and a few empty tables outside - and we grabbed one of these. Food options looked quite decent and were also reasonably priced. I had the fruit loaf which was certainly packed with plenty of fruit. The butter came on its own dish as well - a little thing but something we like. I was dining with D and she had scrambled eggs on toast with a side of bacon. It looked pretty good as well. The coffee was also well done and tasted good. This place has a lot going for it but the downside was that service was very slow and the meals took quite a while to arrive despite it not being full. A few of the staff seemed downright depressed too. Nevertheless the food and coffee were still very good.
Verve Restaurant and Cider House - Brisbane CBD - I love this place. It's underground - kind of - and possibly a bit dark, but it has so much going for it! Firstly the food is great. It's not expensive either. We were in a group and started with a few servings of the trio of dips. They change daily and so you're not really sure what you are going to get - but at only $9.00 for three dips plus a generous serving of warm bread, who cares! We also had a few serves of the bruschetta made with fresh tomato, basil and onion on home baked Italian bread. You get five fingers again for $9.00, and it's great bruschetta too! We were hungry so we added a few pizzas to share as entrees. They are all $17 each and we had a seafood pizza and a chilli fire pizza. One of our group said the chilli fire pizza was the best pizza he'd ever had! Mains ranged from pasta and risotto through to pizza and specials. One special was linguine with sand crab, scallops, chilli, lemon and parmesan. I couldn't resist it once I heard it - and it tasted just as good as it sounded and was only $22.00 (I think)! An indulgent night needs to end in an indulgent fashion - so we decided to have desserts to finish the night, and at only $8.00 each why not. We then decided to have a whole bottle of Pedro Ximenez! My dessert was sticky date pudding with salted caramel sauce, and vanilla ice cream. It was delicious. Others had the same while a few had double chocolate and pistachio brownie with peanut butter ice cream (which would have been my second choice. Verve is a great place that has atmosphere, really good service and excellent food and wine. It's been around for a long time and it deserves to stay around even longer!
The Frisky Goat - Brisbane CBD - Great name for this small coffee shop in the foyer of a building.
Like a lot of quaint places this one is also a bit hard to find but they at least put plenty of signs up to help you get there. The Frisky Goat was recommended as a place to get great coffee - and it certainly was good. There was a constant stream of people here as well with the same idea. It's not a place you would go to sit down and savour a brew - it's more of a take away place. But the coffee is good and that's what you go there to get!
Cha Cha Char - Eagle St Wharf Brisbane - This nicely located restaurant has a good variety of food but it's mostly known for its steaks. In fact they've won awards for them here. The quality and location means that food here isn't cheap - but you do get great quality for the prices you pay. A lovely smoked salmon amuse-bouche arrived shortly after we were seated while we were deciding what to order. For my main course I had the rump steak. It came medium rare as ordered and it was perfectly cooked and a great cut. It was also extremely tender and had plenty of flavour. It cost $44.00. I finished my meal with a lovely lavender crème brulee ($14.00) that was very tasty with very subtle lavender flavours - possibly a bit to subtle. The other desserts looked just as nice as well! The wine list is decent here but predominantly Australian, New Zealand and French. Service was excellent and the place has a nice feel to it which you would expect from somewhere of this quality.
Pane E Vino - Brisbane CBD - Dropped in here for a breakfast recently as it was close to where we were staying. It's a pleasant place that's open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The food was quite good for breakfast. I had two poached eggs and a side of bacon - but the scrambled eggs looked just as nice. You can get two eggs any way you like for $7.50 and then add whatever sides you want - bacon is an extra $2.50. Coffee here is decent as well. The service was a bit slow (and it wasn't packed) and we had to ask a few times for water but the food and coffee made up for this.
Bean - Brisbane CBD - This is a hard to find place that's certainly worth finding. You need to go down a driveway/laneway, turn left then go in a doorway and down a narrow flight of stairs. You enter a cosy place that serves great coffee and a limited (but what looks appealing) range of food. Service is prompt and friendly and prices are decent - $4.50 for a large coffee. The breakfast food options looked quite good - even though I had already had breakfast when I was there.
Brew - Brisbane CBD - What is it with laneways and Brisbane CBD? You would easily think it was Melbourne. Isn't it great to see all the space actually being used - and in some obscure but worth finding places. Brew is down an alley and it initially appears quite small. However turn right once inside and it flows through into a long second room with a bar, small tables along the walls and a long, low narrow bench table down the middle. There were various food options available - a lot of tapas - and three sandwich choices which all sounded good. I had the smoked chicken sandwich - toasted with baby spinach and tomato and served on a metal platter for $9.00. It was very good - nicely toasted and plenty of filling. A flat white capped it off for an extra $3.50. You pay at the bar when leaving.
Love Roll Sushi - 149 Adelaide St Brisbane QLD - Nice sushi rolls here. I've eaten their delicious rolls quite a few times while travelling and have always found them tasty and fresh. The rolls are always plump and full of goodies - unlike some places that are a bit mean with the good contents. The rolls here are also good value. I'll be back.
Bavarian Bier Cafe Eagle Street Pier - Eagle Street Peir, 45 Eagle Street Brisbane QLD - Decent food, big servings, nice decor, not dirt cheap, good service. Good place for a group dinner - which was what we did. We spent a lot of time there having entrees, mains, desserts and after dinner drinks. It was a great night but not cheap. Its always busy so plenty of other people obviously like it too.
Belgian Beer Cafe Brussels - 169 Mary Street Brisbane QLD - I've eaten here twice. The food is quite good - especially the mussels - which are of course a Belgain specialty dish. They come with a variety of broths and are always perfectly cooked. This place isn't the cheapest evening meal around town but it is a decent feed.
Pig 'n'Whistle Riverside - Riverside Centre Brisbane QLD - Ate here with a group and we were well looked after. Meals aren't dirt cheap but they are nice. They have good steaks (quite a few of us had them) that are cooked to order and decent sizes. The restaurant seems disproportionately large compared to the drinking area - but it is a pub after all - however plenty of people seem to also just go there to eat.