Isla Cantina

This waterfront Southern California-meets-Mexican bar and eatery is now serving crab tostadas and margaritas on the Isle of Capri
Sarah Ward
May 15, 2023


Think Capri, and you likely think of the island off Italy's coastline. Southeast Queensland also boasts the Isle of Capri, however, in the Nerang River on the Gold Coast. And it's there that you'll find your next spot for Southern California-meets-Mexican eats while peering at the water, with newcomer Isla Cantina opening its doors.

Back in mid-2022, the Capri on Via Roma shopping centre was snapped up by Mulpha Hospitality Group, who is behind this new restaurant and bar as well. Isla Cantina is nestled next to Edgewater Dining & Lounge Bar, can welcome in 100 people, and sports a coastal-appropriate earthy and airy fitout by Brisbane-based architect and interior designer Simone Barr from DAARC — and, amid greenery and neutral hues, those views.

Mark Marshall, Mulpha's Area Executive Chef for Queensland, has overseen Isla Cantina's culinary lineup, which unsurprisingly goes heavy on seafood given the venue's location. Fried red snapper tacos are a particular highlight, sitting alongside spanner crab tostadas, snapper ceviche, cachaca- and lime-cured ocean trout, and yellowfin tuna tiradito. If you're keen to venture beyond the ocean's finest, eight-hour slow-roasted lamb barbacoa, adobe barbecue chicken, and flank steak paired with bone-marrow butter, fire-roasted onions and tomatillo salsa are also on the menu, plus jackfruit carnitas.

For dessert, options include barbecue pineapple, as well as the sweet-and-spicy blend that comes with chocolate and chipotle mousse.

And, you'll also lean into a melange of flavours in the cocktail range, which is filled with drinks ready to be sipped on Isla Cantina's breezy deck. Authentic Mexican cocktails lead the show, margaritas obviously included, and also the paloma, and the beer-based chelada and michelada.


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