Penne 4 Your Thoughts

Penne Cole's thoughts on food, travel and more

City breaks: Brisbane, Australia

It’s been a while since we took a break from the daily grind. Weekly travel, early morning starts, and constant walks with the dog were wearing us down. So when we were offered the chance to spend a couple of nights in Brisbane (he was getting an award – so proud!) we leapt at the opportunity.

My three top highlights were:

1. Getting upgraded at the hotel – always a bonus!


View from our room at the Ibis Styles, Brisbane


We had booked a room at the Ibis Styles, and got a nice surprise when they upgraded us to a room with a beautiful view of the Brisbane River. Not bad for just under $120 a night, including breakfast.


Falling asleep with the lights of South Bank in the background

2. Dinner at the Charming Squire


Spit roast lamb with gravy, truffle mash potato and brocollini

My parents had stumbled upon this James Squire pub when they visited me last year. Attracted by the whole spit roast in the window, they wandered in for a pint. Since then, I’ve even had team dinners there because the food and atmosphere are so good. This visit didn’t disappoint. The spit roast lamb was fall-off-the-bone tender, and went really well with the gravy, although the mint jelly was just a bit too overpowering when paired with the meat. The truffle mash potato was amazing, and the broccolini with its toppings of roasted slivered almonds and goat cheese was a great accompaniment.


Sticky date pudding with caramel sauce

The Aussie classic sticky date pudding we had for dessert was a hit as usual. Beware of the berry and chocolate crumb that comes with it – it contains popping candy!

3. Drinks by the Brisbane River


Pineapple and jalapeno margarita and a bloody mary

A holiday isn’t a holiday without a little people watching. Mucho Mexicano on Little Stanley St in South Bank was the perfect place. They have a number of interesting margaritas on the menu, including a pineapple and jalapeno with coriander syrup combo (tastes better than it sounds). Too bad they don’t do a bloody Caesar.

Practical Information

Charming Squire

133 Grey St, South Bank, Brisbane

The bar is open Mon – Thu 10am to midnight, and Fri – Sun 10am to late

The restaurant is open Sun – Thu 11am – 10pm and Fri – Sat 11am – 11pm

Try the daily iron bark coal fired spit roast meats


Mucho Mexicano

Shop 15, Little Stanley St, South Bank, Brisbane

Mon – Sun 11am – late


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This entry was posted on September 17, 2016 by in Australia, Food, Restaurant reviews, Travel and tagged , .
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