Originally this piece was titled Suburban Treasures, so what are suburban treasures you ask? Well they’re little places that you may not know about tucked away out of the city limelight, but more than that they are at the top of their game. So obviously these locations are going to be about things that I enjoy so there’s no fancy 3 Michelin star restaurants here. We’re talking steaks, barbecue, bakeries, an amazing butcher and pies.
So now I’ve actually written this, I’ve looked back to discover that all of these locations are some how related to low n slow BBQ, so here are 5 hidden suburban treasures that all do something related to BBQ.
So who has the best steaks in Brisbane? Where does my money go? Well if you take all the advertising and blah blah out, it is the most unlikely place you would ever think of, are you ready? Algester Sports Club, located in the small suburb of Algester about 30mins south of the city. This little bowls club in suburbia knows steak, so much so that they dry age and hand cut their steaks in house. This is done in a temperature controlled room with salt blocks and special lights, not bad for your humble suburban bowls club, eh? Prices are good too, a 300g eye fillet will set you back $35 or $33 if your a member of the club and membership cost $4 a year. The rest of the menu is top notch also with palmy’s big enough they hang over the edges of the plate and steak sandwiches that melt in the mouth with premium steak used. Be sure to ask chef Adrian what he has tucked away
out the back as he often has special steak, and other things, that are not listed on the menu. Steaks are cooked behind the glass where you line up to order so you can watch the attention to detail given to each one. Chef Adrian is also half of Double Barrel BBQ, recent Grand Champions at Port Macquarie BBQ wars and beating out 80+ teams in the process and also taking out 2nd place at Bundaberg recently. While there may not be a great selection of craft beer available the beer here is cheap and there is plenty of parking. You can also catch Adrian as he competes in the upcoming Brisbane, Burleigh and Bangalow BBQ festivals. http://www.algestersports.com.au
So that takes care of your hard and fast searing barbecue but what about low n slow, well here’s my next hidden gem tucked away at Springfield, Blvd Restaurant. Now we’re talking real low n slow American style BBQ and burgers. Think ironbark wood smoked brisket, ribs and sausage links with mac n cheese, coleslaw and all that American fare. The guys, James and Josh, have 4 smokers out the back including a Yoder, the first ever BSG, a ProQ and their massive competition pit that sits on a custom built trailer, once again from BSG. The guys also pump out some awesome burgers and make sure you try the house made pork rinds. Josh is also a regular on the competition barbecue scene and just took out 1st place at the Bundaberg comp. You can also catch them at the Brisbane, Burleigh and Bangalow festivals later this year. Want to learn some tips and tricks for low n slow barbecue? Well the guys also run regular cooking classes and along with that, if you ask nicely and give them notice they will even order in meat from their suppliers for you to give it a go yourself. http://www.blvdrestaurant.com.au
Right so now now your hungry and all inspired to cook your own barbecue where are you going to go? Well for me I go to Meat at Billy’s, by far my favourite butcher in Brisbane. Remember the old days when the butcher could tell you where the animal came from, hell remember the days when they actually still butchered the animal on the premises, well you should meet Billy. The moment you walk in the shop it has that old style community butcher feel about it. The guys are always busy making things or ducking out the back to find something special for a customer and they are genuinely friendly and happy to help. If something is not in the window they will go and prep it for you while you wait and have great advice on cooking their products too. They are big supporters of the barbecue community and sponsor a few of the local teams here with their competition supply. This is by far the best place in Brisbane to get real American style pork ribs. You can check all the details at their online store where you can also purchase and have your goodies delivered. Like the guys at Blvd, Billy also organises regular cooking classes and demonstrations with the next one being a low n slow master class with the Barbecue Mafia and the Shank Brothers on 29th May. Billy has just opened a new shop so now you can get your supplies from Ashgrove or Rosalie. http://www.meatatbillys.com.au
So if you’ve read my other posts you’ll note that I often talk about places on the Gold Coast, that’s because my other hobby is surfing and I’m always keen for a post surf chew. My favourite spot for breakfast regardless of location is definitely Paddock Bakery located at Burleigh. These guys do everything from acai bowls and rustic avo on toast to smoked pulled pork in pastry and 14hr smoked brisket rolls. Not to mention sausage rolls, cheese burgers, vanilla milkshake donuts, Ruben toasted sandwiches oh I could just go on and on. There is plenty of seating, mainly outside, and parking isn’t too bad. This place gets super busy in the weekend so be warned and be prepared for a bit of a wait but believe me it’s more than worth it. Oh and the coffee, oh my god the coffee, they just do everything so well here. You can check their website or if you want pure unadulterated food porn make sure to check out the Instagram feed. http://www.paddockbakery.com
So my last hidden treasure was originally going to be my favourite food truck, problem is they do some of the most amazing burgers in Brisbane and my intent is still to bring you my top 5 burger joints. So with that I sat back and thought of where else I find myself heading that is also barbecue related on a regular basis, the answer Piefection.
So as if a good pie isn’t enough to get you excited, I’m going to list a few of the specials that Piefection have offered recently and if your mouth doesn’t water you should probably stop following my blog, just joking why would you do a stupid thing like that. There’s the Jack Daniels pork rib with creamy mash and pulled pork, German roast pork belly with apple and bier gravy, sticky chilli plum pork belly and the special for May (while stocks last) – smoked brisket, pulled beef, pork rib, Memphis sauce, fried Monterey Jack cheddar and pastrami. What’s better is there is 2 locations being Coorparoo and Mt Gravatt. They are open decent hours so you can get your fix for breakfast lunch and dinner. What makes a difference here is that Matt is a qualified chef and this means things a done differently. For example some things are smoked, other things are sous-vide for 50hrs, sauces are made in house and the ingredients that go in are masterpieces in their own right. Piefection pies are made fresh, cooked and served, nothing is frozen or reheated, make it, cook it, serve it. The regular menu is just as good as the specials, be sure to try the lamb shank and rosemary and the crispy fries topped with ham, bacon, cheese and gravy. Still want more, well for another $3.70 you can add mushy peas, mash spud and gravy to any pie, now come on who’s going to say no to all of that. Seriously get here and smash some in your pie hole. http://www.piefection.com.au
Your lucky because you get a bonus offering in this post, another group of talented individuals worth mentioning is the Barbecue Mafia. They currently don’t have a permanent location but do pop up events almost fortnightly now, if they’re not competing up and down the country or catering private events. These guys know their stuff too and have now moved to customers pre ordering for their events to avoid disappointment, check their website for more details along with some good tips on their blog. http://www.barbecuemafia.com.au
Well that concludes another top 5 (+1 bonus) but don’t worry there’s still more to come, the next adventure will be burgers. There are so many good joints around and more opening every week but don’t worry I’m going to eat my way through Brisbane so you know exactly where to go. Further down the track I’m going to mash everything together and we will find out who does the best food and craft beer in one spot. This is a really hard gig and the training sessions are getting longer to cope, but don’t worry I’m here for you and will power my way through.