Consider the delicious irony of this destination’s food fable which begins at a place called The Spit. Start here at the Gold Coast Fisherman’s Co-operative where the colourful trawlers haul in daily catches of local prawns and spanner crabs. The Coast’s dining scene boasts hatted restaurants, celebrity restaurateurs, breweries and cooking schools.
It all started with Bin 12 at Burleigh Heads, followed by Little Truffle at Mermaid Beach, now, acclaimed Gold Coast chef Daniel Ridgeway has added Bin 72 at Coolangatta’s The Strand to his bow. Cheap and cheerful Tuesdays include $5 gourmet tacos with a twist.
Clifford’s Bar & Lounge
Modest accommodation offering the Watermark Hotel in Surfers Paradise is setting the food scene on fire with this fine dining entrant. Select from three different dining experiences designed to reflect the mood of diners in this heritage-style eatery named after 19th century rower Thomas Clifford.
Tenteram Fine Foods
Asia meets the Currumbin Valley at this establishment which teaches its students about the healing properties of fresh Asian ingredients and the fine art of cooking without salts, refined sugars, shrimp paste, fish sauce or starches. Stock up on sambals, satay sauces and pastes.
This consistently chef-hatted restaurant encourages its diners to take some organic limes home with them, as they are in such abundance. As are many of the organic menu items here such as avocado, mandarin trees, curry plans, herbs and vegetables. Share plates feature on the menu.
While it would be tempting to focus on the dirty chai – a blend of espresso and chai tea – at Broadbeach’s Elk Espresso, there’s much more to this place than meets the eye. An eclectic dining destination, choose the breakfast nachos and peanut butter milk shake.
Laidback and very cool, blink and miss Alfred’s Diner along the Gold Coast Highway at Mermaid Beach. This old beach building has been transformed into a beer garden setting where the breakfast menu includes affordable burritos, burgers and coffee. Check out the old barber shop inside.
If healthy food and a healthy lifestyle appeal, look no further than BSKT at Mermaid Beach. Gold Coast Titans co-captain Greg Bird co-owns this establishment just back from the beach, which has evolved into a health brand with its yoga classes and fresh menu.
For simple food and sensational views, it’s hard to look past Café D’Bar at Point Danger. Work up an appetite watching the surfers tackle the barrels down below at Snapper Rocks and Duranbah. Ideal for breakfast or lunch, seafood is a hero of the menu.
Allure on Currumbin
Posh nosh doesn’t come much better than Allure which eschews its laidback Currumbin Creek locale and delivers a French bistro with flair. There’s duck galore on this menu from risotto, duck l’orange or the local favourite, black cherry duck, and plenty of seafood dishes too.
Byron Farmers’ Market
Showcasing 20 local suppliers, the Byron Farmers’ Market is the ideal destination at which to stock up on fresh produce from around the region. Staged every Thursday, try Bryon Bay Miso, Byron Bay Pork, and Byron Bay Aromas Coffee from a long list of incredible ingredients.