Healthy Eating

We're championing fresh food that packs a flavour punch, from salads and vegetable-packed bowls to grains and light desserts.

Subscribe to Gourmet

Subscribe to Australian Gourmet Traveller and receive a free salt and pepper set - offer ends 26 March, 2017

Gourmet digital

Subscribe to Gourmet Traveller for your iPad or Android tablet.

The benefits of live yoghurt
23.03.2017

Step away from the “dessert yoghurt", writes Will Studd. The real unadulterated thing is much more rewarding.

All-Star Yum Cha
22.03.2017

What happens the morning after the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards? We treat the chefs to a world-beating yum cha session, as Dani Valent discovers.

Honey Fingers, Melbourne's inner-city beekeepers
22.03.2017

Single-source honey putting community and sustainability next to sweetness.

Vermouth is having a moment
21.03.2017

More and more adventurous local winemakers are embracing Vermouth's botanicals, writes Max Allen.

Exploring Indonesia's Komodo National Park
21.03.2017

Indonesia's Komodo National Park is home to staggering scenery and biodiversity. Michael Harden sets sail in a handcrafted yacht to explore its remote islands in pared-back luxury.

The new cruises on the horizon in 2017
21.03.2017

Cue the Champagne.

Seven recipes that shaped 1980s fine dining
21.03.2017

Australia saw some bold moves in the ’80s, and we’re not just talking hairstyles. Greater cultural references started peppering the menus of our restaurants, and home-grown ingredients won a new appreciation. The dining scene was coming of age and a new band of pioneers led the charge.

Where Melbourne's finest will take the World's Best Chefs
20.03.2017

Leading chefs descend on Melbourne in April for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. We asked local hospitality folk who they’d abduct for the day and where they’d take them to show off their city. There may be coffee, there may be culture, but in the end it’s cocktails.

Cliff Dive, Thomas Olive, Mero Kitchen & Bar, Bread and Bone Wood Grill

The Mero, Brisbane

The Mero, Brisbane

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country this week, including Cliff Dive, Thomas Olive, Mero Kitchen & Bar, Bread and Bone Wood Grill.

SYDNEY
The Cliff Dive 
Though it enjoyed success as a nightclub, the recent lockout laws put a crimp in the late-night follies at The Cliff Dive, so it's been retooled with more of a cocktail and snack focus. The same great tunes and kooky New Guinea-tiki vibe remain, but now there's a badass new drinks list from talented bartender Michael Chiem (late of Bulletin Place, and before that the cocktail master across Sokyo and Black), and a short, smart, well-priced menu of grilled things on sticks from newcomer Tin-Jung "Honky" Shea. You may not be able to rock up at three in the AM anymore, but the food still goes till 1.30, so drop in at your leisure and down a Jungle Bird (spiced rum, Campari, pine and lime) or pop a dirty tin and gnaw the genuinely impressive likes of pork with turmeric and lemongrass, say, or beef with wild ginger, served with fluffy coconut and pandan rice and spicy pickles. Better still, the Hungry Honky buys you one of each of the five sticks (the pork, beef, chicken, octopus and surprisingly delicious tofu) plus the rice and pickles for just $16. Jump in. The Cliff Dive, 16-18 Oxford Square, Darlinghurst, NSW. PAT NOURSE

MELBOURNE
Thomas Olive
Thomas Olive, the upstairs bar at Smith Street's Saint Crispin, has always had a yen for the French. The booze list includes separate anisette and apéritif sections and the décor, all dark polished wood, small round tables and dark-stained bentwood bistro chairs, doesn't try to hide its Francophile sympathies. Now the bar's menu, formerly a pretty snacky affair, has shifted focus to European-style pub food, courtesy of chef and co-owner Joe Grbac. Winter-friendly food includes chicken with wild mushroom sauce, beef cheeks with pommes purée, and salmon pie with celery hearts and a green salad. Grbac is one of Melbourne's great chefs and while he's shown time and again that he can do fancy and inventive (both at Saint Crispin and at his former gig at The Press Club), he's proving himself a dab hand with the classics, too. Given the hearty comfort-food style, plus the inclusion of oysters and charcuterie to kick things off, Thomas Olive might well shed its holding-pen persona and become a destination in itself. Thomas Olive, upstairs, 300 Smith St, Collingwood, Vic, (03) 9419 2202. MICHAEL HARDEN

BRISBANE
The Mero Kitchen & Bar
Suburban shopping just got tastier. The latest runner from the Moubarak hospitality stable (owners of Brisbane's Gerard's Bistro, Gerard's Bar, Laruche, Hatch & Co, et al) is the family's tilt at a modern tratt. It's part of a quartet of new dining options on the perimeter of the revamped Indooroopilly Shopping Centre. Dishes hitting The Mero's retro-rustic formica-topped tables range from thin, crisp-based pizze (topped with, say, hot sopressa, provolone and mushroom) to hearty boards laden with slabs of porchetta and lamb shoulder. Seafood linguine is nicely al dente, lightly sprinkled with Queensland-made bottarga, twirled around a decent haul of spanner crab, clams, squid and more. The venue name is a nod to merum, the Latin term for undiluted wine and an appropriately punchy drinks list, dotted with a wide-ranging selection by-the-glass, looks likely to enhance late-night shopping forays. The Mero Kitchen & Bar, 322 Moggill Rd, Indooroopilly Shopping Centre, Indooroopilly, Qld, (07) 3378 5958. FIONA DONNELLY


ADELAIDE
Bread & Bone Wood Grill
The hottest new attraction in Adelaide's small bar scene is, literally, a hole-in-the-wall. Restaurateur Simon Kardachi (Press Food + Wine, Proof, Melt, The Pot) has provided the missing link in the burgeoning Leigh and Peel streets small-bar scene by knocking though a tunnel connecting the two streets. It also boasts a giant wooden door that leads upstairs to a diner-inspired eatery. Bread & Bone Wood Grill focuses on eight serious burgers, hot dogs and simple grilled meats, but thankfully avoids Americana kitsch. It's a neatly refined space with a long wooden bar, open kitchen, marble tabletops and blond wood with stainless-steel stools. Among the various sausages, try the Big Black Dog - morcilla with apple and egg rémoulade in a toasted brioche roll, crowned by slender, crisp onion rings. Afterwards, head downstairs to the opulent wood-panelled basement bar called Maybe Mae. Bread & Bone Wood Grill, 15 Peel St, Adelaide, SA, (08) 8221 6966. DAVID SLY

Got a hot tip for our Hot Plates team? Tweet us at @gourmettweets, or tag your Instagram photos with #GThotplates.


Newsletter

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.

Latest news
Happy first birthday, Bar Brose
17.03.2017
Happening Hobart
16.03.2017
Neil Perry pulls out of haute cuisine; Eleven Bridge to close
15.03.2017
Aaron Carr to leave Vasse Felix after 21 years
15.03.2017
Momofuku takes over Lee Ho Fook
15.03.2017
Perfect match: Pasi Petanen and Giorgio De Maria pop-up this March
24.02.2017
GT
Signature Collection

Find out more about the Gourmet Traveller Signature Collection by Robert Gordon Australia, including where to buy it in store and online.

Read More
Recipe collections

Looking for ways to make the most out of seasonal produce? Want to find a recipe perfect for a party? Or just after fresh ideas for dessert? Either way, our recipe collections have you covered.

See more
2017 Restaurant Guide

Our 2017 Restaurant Guide is online, covering over 400 restaurants Australia wide. Never wonder where to dine again.

See more

You might also like...

Hot Plate: Face2Face Noodles, Sydney

Chinatown's new spicy Chongqing-styled noodle bar is complet...

Hot Plates: Higher Ground, Melbourne

The line between cafe and restaurant is blurred at the CBD’s...

Hot Plates: 13 February 2015

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

L'Americano, Sydney

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Estelle Bistro, Melbourne

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Bang Street Food, Sydney

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Minamishima, Melbourne

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Lilo Tang, Canberra

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Mayflower Restaurant and Bar, Adelaide

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

The Vertue of the Coffee Drink, Melbourne

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Spirit House, Yandina, Qld

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Bistro Nguyen's, Canberra

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

University of Melbourne Farmers' Market

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

Clayton Wells at LuMi

The pair join forces for Sunday lunches at LuMi.

Farmhouse Restaurant, Pialligo Estate, ACT

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats ar...

get the latest news

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.

×