DOWN BY THE WA­TER

Gourmet Traveller (Australia) - - Contents - Words HAR­RIET DAVID­SON, FIONA DON­NELLY, MICHAEL HAR­DEN, MATTHEW HIRSCH, SA­MAN­THA McCUE, GARETH MEYER & DAVID SLY

A good view and a good time. We wrap up the coun­try’s great­est places to eat and drink by the wa­ter.

The shores of Noosa, the clear blues of Bondi Beach, the Yarra’s bus­tle, the seren­ity of Lake Bur­ley Grif­fin. A good view doesn’t guar­an­tee a good time, but the places that marry the two de­mand at­ten­tion. We wrap up the coun­try’s great­est places to eat and drink by the wa­ter.

Rickys River Bar and Restau­rant

Nowhere con­jures river­side chic more ef­fort­lessly than Noosa stal­wart, Rickys. In­te­ri­ors chan­nel an up­scale house­boat vibe, with boards un­der­foot, a mix of lou­vres and floor-to-ceil­ing bi-folds an­gled to cap­ture every ri­par­ian rip­ple, re­flec­tion and breeze. There’s a “source lo­cal” ethos here, and the menu leans Mediter­ranean with a fo­cus on pris­tine seafood: span­ner crab tossed through spaghet­tini, say, or pep­per-cured sword­fish with fin­ger lime and cu­cum­ber salt. 2 Quamby Pl, Noosa

Heads, (07) 5447 2455, rickys.com.au

Stoke­house Q

Opt for an icy glass and a chilli prawn sanga at the bar, or fish and triple-cooked chips with sea­weed salt on the deck – either way those im­pres­sive widescreen panora­mas of the Bris­bane River and city’s sky­line are om­nipresent at Stoke­house Q. Like its Mel­bourne coun­ter­part, this north­ern out­post is fa­mous for its long lunches, but the slide from sunset into early evening is when the real magic hap­pens. Si­don St, South Bank, Bris­bane,

(07) 3020 0600, stoke­houseq.com.au

Hel­lenika at The Calile

If your idea of poolside din­ing is more on the ca­sual side, re­cal­i­brate here. The Bris­bane sib­ling of the Gold Coast’s best Greek will see you set­tled in one of its seven glam wa­ter­front ca­banas fork­ing lob­ster pasta like an Athe­nian be­fore you can say pass the ho­ri­atiki. The ca­banas fit eight to 10 – all the bet­ter, you’ll need friends to help tackle the salty pork belly, dol­mades and ev­ery­thing else that comes in the ban­quet. The Calile, Level 1/48 James St, For­ti­tude Val­ley, (07) 3252 2060, hel­lenika.com.au

Rick Shores

Rhyth­mic white-tipped break­ers, the colour­ful clash of surfers – all the ocean ac­tion un­folds un­der your nose at Ricks, and, clev­erly, there are views from each of its three lev­els. “Feed me” op­tions from the pan-Asian menu are a chance to get an over­view of the food – any­thing from coal-grilled Chi­nese black chicken with fer­mented chilli, to roasted cau­li­flower with pepita sa­tay and cau­li­flower-leaf kim­chi – with­out think­ing about it too much, leav­ing am­ple op­por­tu­nity to drink in the beach vis­tas. 43 Good­win Tce, Burleigh Heads, (07) 5630 6611, rick­shores.com.au

Wasabi

Nab a ta­ble by the floor-to-ceil­ing win­dows and rel­ish the broad Noosa River views and a menu that brings lo­cal flair to Ja­panese dishes. Buck­wheat soba paired with strands of Noosa sand crab and herbs from Wasabi’s Honey­suckle Hill farm and shot through with Sun­shine Coast bunya nut, per­haps, or Mooloolaba prawns cured in house-made mirin. A Ja­panese din­ing ex­pe­ri­ence like no other.

2 Quamby Pl, Noosa, (07) 5449 2443, wasabisb.com

From top: Rick Shores; painted cray­fish with head-co­ral miso and tem­pura lime ver­bena at Wasabi; Noosa River views from Wasabi. PRE­VI­OUS PAGE View of Port Wil­lunga Beach from Star of Greece (back­ground); saganaki, tara­masalata, Greek salad, grilled oc­to­pus with broad beans, and zuc­chini chips at Hel­lenika.

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