It is said, never eat seafood where you can't smell the sea. This is not about freshness, but it is genuinely about the fact the smell of the ocean improves the taste and dining experience. Here are 5 of Brisbane's best seafood venues near the sea. Also check out these bars near the sea.
The psychology of taste and dining is fascinating. When they originally built the Concorde supersonic jet airliner they also made ultra light weight cutlery. When they tested these titanium knives and forks with customers the answer was, they are great but the food doesn't taste as nice.
Some restaurants choose the right music and setting to help with your dining experience. But the number one simplest way to improve the taste of seafood is to eat it where you can smell the ocean. So let's visit some restaurants by the ocean.
Morgan's Seafood Restaurant and Seafood Takeaway: Scarborough
Located out at the Redcliffe Peninsula, you know when a seafood restaurant is basically an extension for a fresh seafood market, it is going to be good. With a reputation going back over 20 years, Morgan's combines a fresh seafood market, fish & chip shop and two restaurants.
This restaurant is at the top of the list because it is a bit of everything. They have fresh seafood, much of it farmed or caught locally in the area. Then you have my personal preference, the fish & chip shop where you can select from a wide range of fresh seafood. There is also a takeaway seafood platter option, which is perfect for entertaining if you live in the local area.
Then there is the seafood restaurant which does not much more than cook wonderfully fresh seafood in a simple manner. Most people go for the seafood platters. However if you want something with more flavour the Asian teppanyaki (where they cook the food in front of you while you watch) is popular.
Still a popular local favourite and one of the places the ex-locals return to. If you are not in the area, then it can be part of a great Redcliffe day trip. Be aware though the popularity of the area on weekends means booking ahead is advised.
Wilson's Boathouse: Manly
With arguably the best views on the coast line of Brisbane, Wilson's Boathouse does great seafood. Prices are typical for this type of restaurant with mains starting at $30 per person.
The thing to remember about a restaurant like this is that you are paying top dollar for great seafood. However that is it. While they stack up the plates in an attempt to provide a fine dining experience, the meals are fairly simple, with the emphasis being on the quality of the seafood.
For many people this makes the experience less than desirable as they can get more elegantly prepared meals for the same price elsewhere. However if you are like me and just love great quality seafood where flavours are there to enhance the food, not hide its true taste, then you will enjoy eating here.
Once again, try the weekends, rather than weekdays, when they are busy and the best staff are on duty.
Doug's Seafood Cafe: Sandgate
There are lots of self styled seafood cafes around Brisbane, however most of them have restaurant prices. Doug's seafood cafe provides a range of seafood dishes, from grilled fish from $7, mains from $17 dollars and seafood platters that are around $26 per person.
Personally my preference is to grab some takeaway seafood, chips and salad and enjoy them in the park beside the beach. However the cafe itself is also a nearly perfect spot to enjoy the sea view.
Photo courtesy of Doug's Seafood Cafe
Your dining options in Sandgate are many and varied and I do recommend that you try a few, but the best value for money is Doug's Seafood Cafe.
Island View Cafe: Wynnum
While calling itself a cafe, The Island View Cafe is really your classic seafood takeaway. This is where you buy your seafood and take it to the waterfront to eat. This business has been in operation for over 60 years and the current owner has been running it for more than 15 years.
A seafood, chips and salad pack will set you back $10 and burgers start at around $6, this might seem like your typical fish & chip shop. However as the area has gentrified, they also offer a selection of seafood, including barrumundi, whiting and sea perch.
There is a lot to love about this cafe/restaurant.The location is great, right in the heart of point lookout make it a popular dining destination. The food is fantastic, with all your typical seafood specialties, but they also do a range of other meals worth checking out. The prices are great too, with mains ranging from $14 to $27 dollars. Even better, kids meals are $10, making this a popular family restaurant.