The state of political affairs in the US at the moment could not be worse. One thing that hasn’t changed (THANKFULLY) is the food. Brisbane’s gone mad with clean eating and gyming a minimum 37 times a week… we’ve really forgotten how put away a rack a ribs and let it all hang out. This list isn’t for vego’s, weak appetites and crossfit fanatics. This list is for those who enjoy their meals cooked low and slow. We hope to cover all bases of good American joints around the city.
Yard Bird Ale House
1/208 Given Terrace, Paddington QLD 4064
Couple of these around the city. One in Paddington and another in the Fortitude Valley. Both really good places to drink and to eat with good seating area and a proper bar. Would definitely recommend going the loaded chilli cheese and beef fries, as well as the death wings. Be warned these things aren’t for the faint hearted – I manned up and downed these after a few too many pints and it literally was, almost the death of me.
5/182 Grey St, South Brisbane QLD 4101
Tippler’s Tap used to be tucked away in the backstreets of Newstead but have since moved to a prime location in South Bank. While some of the ‘cool’ factor no longer exists, the menu has remained somewhat unaffected, as well as the beverage list. Highly recommend going straight for the wings here.
31 Wakefield St, Coorparoo QLD 4151
I reckon Carolina Kitchen used to be the don on American food in Brisbane. It was the definitely the first time I ate out in a typical American styles diner in Brisbane, some 3 or 4 years ago. These guys are the real deal and encapsulate the vibe perfectly. I wasn’t a huge fan of the burgers they have, but you can’t go past the ribs and wings – then wash down with a cherry Dr. Pepper.
Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall
15 Caxton St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
Lefty’s is a very cool bar on Caxton Street and definitely the place to go for a drink after a game at Suncorp. By far the coolest thing about Lefty’s is the venue itself. It’s modelled out of an Old Time Music Hall paying homage to Deep South of the 19th Century America. The live music is also a big plus, and you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere that gives off the same vibe. We recommend sampling some of the Whiskies and Bourbons on offer.
427 Logan Rd, Greenslopes QLD 4120
Shady Palms is very unique, and offers a tropical oasis for those dining. The menu is cool and a bit different from most American diners. My only issue with Shady Palms was the price, finding it slightly higher than what you might expect from somewhere else. It may only be a few dollars but that can really make or break a business when in such a competitive market.
The Smoke BBQ
9/85 Merthyr Rd, New Farm QLD 4005
Smoke BBQ is pound for pound my favourite American food in the city. It good value and the cuts of meat are of superior quality. It’s also in a nice part of town which makes in inviting to take people there who don’t know the city. There’s nothing too fancy about Smoke, in terms of the way the dress the meals or the décor, but the food is all you should be worried about – and it does not disappoint.
3/88 Creek St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
Since its opening, Red Hook has been the cornerstone to all things related to American food in Brissy. Tucked away in Gresham Lane, just off Creek Street in Brisbane’s CBD, RedHook is perfect for a quick eat with a small group, these guys hit the nail on the head when it comes to the ever so popular american eateries. Make sure you go for Wing Wednesday – so epic!
Lord of the Wings
1201a/1151 Creek Rd, Carindale QLD 4152
Lords of the Wings is pretty underrated in my opinion. Sometimes eateries can hold stigma’s solely due to their location, in this case Carindale shops. It’s tucked away right in the corner and if you’re not aware, you might miss it. That being said, if I ever do find myself at Carindale shops –Lord of the Wings is where I’m eating. Even if you don’t have a huge appetite in between shopping, it’s always good to go a smash a basket of wings.
Pit Boss BBQ & Eats
190 Enoggera Rd, Newmarket QLD 4051
Pit Boss is all things American with its famous twice-cooked Buffalo wings and peanut butter and key lime dessert pies. There are two shops around the place now, one in Newmarket and one in Coorparoo. Make sure you try the Buffalo Chicken burger with blue cheese sauce – not for the faint hearted.
420 Cavendish Rd, Coorparoo QLD 4151
California Native is a little more upmarket than some of its competitors, and does not go unnoticed. The décor and design are beautiful, as is the food. Given the name of this restaurant, the menu takes a pleasant swerve away for more of a sunny Western, cowboys and Native American vibe. We do whole heartedly recommend the Malibu Wagyu Burger – this things a treat.
169 Mary St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
A great place in the city which is unrivalled in the near vicinity. Good place to go when on a long lunch at work with the company credit card. A wide range beers are available as well as good range of menu items. We were a little disappointed with the speed of the service, given a slow time we were in – but don’t let that experience sway you.
70/90 Middle St, Cleveland QLD 4163
For what we paid, Twelve Boar was a little disappointing for us and we left feeling fairly underwhelmed. If you live out in Cleveland and not prepared to travel, you’ve unfortunately not got a lot of options. That being said, if you really want to get good value we suggest either going the rib stack or check out their Facebook page for daily specials – they market them really well.
NoHo Bar & Grill
1 MacGregor St, Wilston QLD 4051
“NoHo” standing for North of Houston, is a historic district of Manhattan well known for its music and art scene. This place is a really good eatery and outclasses a lot of this competitors. The food is so fresh and you can really feel the love. Another cool addition is the breakfast options they’ve thrown in – so don’t rule them out on a Saturday morning.
3a/354 Main Rd, Wellington Point QLD 4160
You’ll probably only venture to Roasties if you live out by the bay and given that there is very limited rivalry in the Redlands, Roasties is one of your best options. I’m not sure if you put it in a busier area it would survive for this reason – but for the most part we really did enjoy it. Once again, go straight to ribs.
405/401 Logan Rd, Greenslopes QLD 4120
5 Boroughs has emerged on a busy strip in Stones Corner, and offers diners all the American classics. The food quality does outclass most in the immediate area, and we really liked the addition of the Cubano to the menu – not many do this. Food prices are standard to most, but the drinks are a little overpriced. Being a licenced venue, they really should have put a little more emphasis on the refreshments.
Santa Monica Pizza and Burger Bar
192 Ann St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
The legends who brought you Bar Pacino, Metropole Bar and Espresso Emporium are at it again, opening Brisbane’s newest pizza and burger bar. The food on offer consists of something we could all live off forever - burgers, pizza, pasta and more. Keeping with the American theme, the burgers tower on the plate and ooze cheese. If anything is going to be your cheat meal for the week, make sure this is it!
173 Boundary St, West End QLD 4101
First time we stumbled across this place was after a night a solid drinking, PJ’s being the only place still catering late at night. What a find! These sandwiches are the perfect lunch time option, or if you’re in need of a quick (and tasty) bite. Service is fast and flavours and tastes are authentic. Be sure to look out for the Fortitude Valley location as well.
Big Roddy’s Rippin Ribs
67 Fish Ln, South Brisbane QLD 4101
As the title suggests, if you’re going to Roddy’s better make sure you have the appetite for some rippin’ ribs. Roddy’s is a new contender on the block after becoming a successful market on the Boundary Street Markets and is really giving the people what they want. Roddy’s boast a secret method to cooking their ribs, delicious burgers and spicy wings – a must eat on your foodie bucket lists.
168 Grey St, South Brisbane QLD 4101
Brooklyn Depot is definitely one of the best outlets in South Bank and considering how popular it is, do an amazing job of pumping out orders all night long. We’ve been there a few times, and unfortunately the quality has not been consistent throughout. I’d say this partly because we have been going at peak times and the chefs will have been under a lot of stress, but regardless this shouldn’t really be happening. The sides are immaculate and I’ve even been told by a fellow foodie that Brooklyn Depot is even good to just go a get a whole bunch of sides to share. Once again price of drinks is outrageous, leaving with a table full of waters and on to somewhere else after our meal.
3A Little Stanley St, South Brisbane QLD 4101
Manhattan Line are pretty cool because they’ve side stepped a little from the typical American Diner feel, offering gourmet hot dogs and Whiskey – and that’s okay with us! This place has had some good thought behind it, and it doesn’t go unnoticed. The food and drink is also priced perfectly, and in our opinion strikes a good balance between the two. We recommend getting on the all American cocktails with names like Pharmaceutical Stimulant and Bobby Burns.
2/189 Oxford St, Bulimba QLD 4171
Southern Attitude is about as good as its going to get in Bulimba. They really do have a good range of menu items here and usually pretty quick service. The price I noticed was a little high and weirdly inconsistent (some items way more expensive than others). Good to go and take full advantage of their lunch menu. Either way the food is good and worth a try.
184 Grey St, South Brisbane QLD 4101
If you’ve been to New Orleans, you’ll instantly recognise this street name and associate it with some best Southern food available. Bourbon Street’s menu takes inspiration from traditional Cajun flavours with a hint of French influence. Be sure to get around some of their signature cocktails as well as going the classics. We never go past an old-fashioned.
10 Albion Rd, Albion QLD 4010
Hudson Corner brings smokin’ hot American style flavours to Albion. The menu offers up American BBQ classics and south soul food with high quality slow roasted meats. You can grab brekky lunch or dinner in Albion as well as double as a bar. If you’re after catering for a large events, they also can cater.
1/88 Creek St, Brisbane City QLD 4000
Melt Brothers are doing something pretty cool and unlike anyone else in the city. A perfect lunch time option if you don’t feel like being a food coma all afternoon and also growing tired of eating sushi rolls. The sandwiches are also cheap which is plus. A real winner for us though is the specials that they do weekly, really experimenting and pushing the boundaries of what should be conventionally be put between two slices of bread. We really like the branding and the way they market themselves – very cool!
Boroughs of New York Pizza
757 Ann St, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006
You can’t make a list of American foods without paying homage to New York’s famous Pizza’s. Boroughs of New York owners pay tribute to their home city by deciding to do just that, replicating authentic flavours that they’ve missed back home. Want a tip – go the New Yorker slice! It’s the first item on their menu for a reason. I wish I knew what was in that special sauce!
Off The Wall Diner
4/386 Main Rd, Wellington Point QLD 4160
Another American addition to the Redlands and a fairly disappointing one. The burgers buns we had were a little bit stale, and the portion size was so large it became difficult to eat. I didn’t really get the feeling the ingredients being used were of a really high standard, which is what we have come to expect. What was nice was the offering of the ‘World’s Hottest Burger”. I wasn’t game enough to try it, but looked like an awesome menu item to differentiate.
259 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006
Late-night grungy blues bar in the red light district of the Fortitude Valley. This place is pretty cool to go to on a Friday or Saturday night, and even cooler if you can catch a live band. When you do find the entrance to the place it almost feels like your entering into its on little subculture that I’ve not really experienced anywhere else in the city. Awesome range of beers and cocktails.
Hanks Burgers and Beer
55 Caxton Street, Petrie Terrace, Brisbane City QLD 4000
These guys are relatively new to Brisbane’s established burger scene, opening up shop in the last couple of months. As the fit-out suggests, they offer proper American food on a big, big scale. There’s plenty of space for large groups to sit down for a quick bite before the game or a couple of cold beers. The burger menu here isn’t as wide as other burger joints in town, but if you’ve got a handful of options done right, why do you need more?
Park 7 Diner
1/7 Park Terrace, Graceville QLD 4075
Another slightly disappointing dining experience had here. The waiters seemed inexperienced and forgot one of the orders. They also refused to bring tap water to the table insisting we go up the front to pour our own. Now I get that this is probably a request handed down from management to direct customers to the self-serve water. But when you’re sitting down eating and everything else is table service, this is utterly ridiculous. Highlight of the meal was the wings.
14/104 Newmarket Rd, Windsor QLD 4030
There’s no doubt you’ve driven past Harry’s before and left you staring at its 1950’s fit out. This place is as vintage American as it gets and we absolutely love it. If you’re eating here, you might as well complete the package getting an all American hot dog and milk shake. It really would be great to see this much effort being put into the design of places these days – they’ve really hit the nail on the head.
52 Russell St, West End QLD 4101
The Burrows new location, not too far from the old is a lovely old establishment in the middle of West End. 10 points from us for the overall layout and design of place – it is really very cool. There is a good range of food and beverages, but given that this is primarily a pizza shop, the food that stood out the most was the fries and wings. Once again the price of beverages is outrageous. It’s impossible to stay there after the meal because you can literally walk 50m down the road and pay less. It would be cool to see them advocate more of a bar vibe that people wanted to stay at by reducing these prices.