The Gold Coast is renowned for its beaches, glitz and glamour and vibrant nightlife however you may or may not be surprised to find out that it is also home to some of the best restaurants in South-East Queensland. One of the better kept secrets of Brisbane foodies, the Gold Coast has evolved into a mecca for some of the best eats this side of Brisbane. Boasting everything from trendy cafes to casual dining and incredible ethnic food, Gold Coast restaurants are the place to be seen. With so much to choose from it can be hard to make up your mind, but to make things a little easier, we've compiled our list of the top 5 Gold Coast restaurants.
Black Coffee Lyrics: Run by Sunshine Coast ex-pats, this is definitely the place to be seen and not just because it's cool. Aside from its hip vibe, the café makes great coffee by day and transforms into a happening bar by night. Famous for its breakfasts and exclusively ground coffee, there's also great music, books and even board games to enhance the experience. So hot, it reached the Top 5 in the People's Choice category of The Australian's Top 50 Hottest Restaurants!
Hellenika: Located in Nobby's Beach, this atmospheric venue combines the unlikely pairing of an Irish head chef and a Greek owner to produce a surprising and welcoming vibe and some of the juiciest, most tender and most flavoursome lamb shoulder this side of yaya's kitchen. A must-try on the Gold Coast, their Sunday long lunch is also quite legendary and just like leaving yaya's house, you'll be absolutely stuffed.
Bazaar: Buffets aren't usually what comes to mind when you think of top dining spots however Bazaar at QT Gold Coast is bringing buffets back in a big way. Offering something for everyone, this is the ideal choice when you can't decide what you feel like eating. The perfect solution, you can have everything from Asian dumplings to amazing seafood, pig on the spit, grilled steak, pizza, salad and well, almost anything you can think of. Just make sure you leave room for dessert, it's like entering Willy Wonka's kingdom.
Salt Bar & Grill: Owned by celebrity chef Luke Mangan, this is the prime spot for steak on the Gold Coast. Located in the new Hilton at Surfers Paradise, the food is brilliant and the level of service is outstanding. A total dining experience, little details like the crockery, glasses and napkins are all well thought out but you'll probably be more focused on the melt-in-your-mouth steaks than the table setting, and rightly so. The menu boats delicious grill items, fantastic seafood and even a few of Luke's signature dishes.
Justin Lane: Hidden down a lane in Burleigh Heads, this venue exudes cool and attracts droves of bohemian hipsters, particularly on Friday and Saturday nights. You'll have to queue but the pizzas are well worth the wait. A swanky bar and well thought out cocktail list will keep you entertained while you wait, however don't expect a long leisurely dinner as the place is so popular you won't have the chance to laze around at your table. Don't be surprised if you find yourself back at the bar for another go at that cocktail list though.