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By Eliza Crisp
April 11, 2018
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Where to Brunch When a Celebration Is in Order

For the times when eating smashed avo in your activewear just isn’t enough.
By Eliza Crisp
April 11, 2018
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WHERE TO BRUNCH WHEN A CELEBRATION IS IN ORDER

in partnership with

For the times when eating smashed avo in your activewear just isn’t enough.

We all have one local café that lets us schlep in and order a plate of eggs just before the kitchen closes. It might not be the fanciest joint, and you might still be wearing the clothes you slept in, but hey — it gets the job done.

But brunch doesn't always deserve to be relegated to such a perfunctory food experience. Because, sometimes, you've got to find a brunch spot that kicks it up a gear. Sometimes there are occasions that deserve a bit more pizzazz. 

Maybe it's your best friend's birthday, or your sister just returned from Europe. Maybe your co-worker is having a baby, or your Dad is celebrating a significant birthday. Or maybe you are finally catching up with that group of friends who have been spamming the group chat with demands to see each other since Christmas. We've partnered with American Express to discover the best brunch spots to celebrate the big stuff. Crisp white linen, free-flowing bellinis, breakfast degustations. It's time to get your Amex Card out and get fancy.

Got yourself in another dining situation and need some guidance? Whatever it is, we know a place. Visit The Shortlist and we'll sort you out.

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    If you’re with an enthusiastic group of ravenous brunchers, this colossal Paddington venue is the ultimate crowd pleaser. Breakfast is served up daily, but there are separate menus for weekdays and weekends. The weekend breakfast menu kicks off at 6.30am and has a serious focus on local and sustainable ingredients — think Fraser Coast spanner crab, Victorian feta, local king prawns. Plus, the restaurant has jumped on the waffle cone coffee craze (so you can quench your chocolate cravings first thing in the morning). Heading to a game at Suncorp Stadium after the breakfast celebrations? Darling and Co offers bottomless bellinis on Sundays from noon.

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    Nestled inside New Farm’s luxurious Spicers Balfour Hotel, The Balfour Kitchen is a mini urban oasis. With crisp white linen and an impressive list of breakfast cocktails — including bellinis, bloody marys and mimosas — The Balfour Kitchen is home to a lush garden balcony studded with dreamy frangipani trees. Alongside its ace high tea menu and an impressive lineup of a la carte breakfast options is the Bubbles and Breakfast deal, which pairs one of the restaurant’s signature breakfast dishes with a glass of sparkling New Zealand wine. While the restaurant is an obvious choice for any newly engaged couples looking to celebrate their upcoming nuptials, it’s also the perfect spot for a celebratory brunch of any nature.

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    This James Street stalwart has the enviable ability to smoothly transition between breakfast, lunch and dinner service, without so much as missing a beat. The service is always friendly and prompt, and the people watching opportunities at this venue are seriously underrated (a little bit like Paris, just with more humidity). Grab a table in the garden, and relax under the cool green canopy. For brunch celebrations, we suggest giving the talented pastry chef a little heads-up and organising a bespoke cake for your nearest and dearest. Because cake at breakfast-time is always a good idea.    

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    With an interior that can only be described as Scandi-sleek-meets-industrial-chic, Gauge is a minimalist’s dream. Located across the road from GOMA and the Queensland Museum, this is the ultimate spot to fuel up before a day spent soaking up Queensland’s best exhibitions. The tables are bare, which allows the food to truly shine, and an inventive (and often surprising) menu is on offer. The black garlic bread, brown butter and burnt vanilla combo might raise a few eyebrows at first, but we promise that it’s worth that step out of your comfort zone. 

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    Customs House

    This iconic heritage building is more than 100 years old and was once the centre of Brisbane’s bustling port trade. Modern times have seen this venue slowly transformed into a glamorous food and function space. The in-house restaurant is similarly glam — think boozy brunch on the balcony underneath the hanging greenery. Architecture nerds will get a serious buzz from the building, while foodies will be left happily satisfied by the breakfast menu. There’s a special breakfast menu on Sundays, too, which features luxe options like gruyere omelettes, cinnamon French toast and poached eggs served with black pudding. We also love the restaurant’s classic black and white checkerboard flooring.

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    Unless you’re lucky enough to live smack-bang in the middle of the CBD, Riverbar probably isn’t your usual brunch haunt. But, if you’re keen to impress some interstate guests (or some important locals), this is the ultimate spot to dazzle them. Brunch is served every day until 11.30am, and, if you manage to snag a table a bit later in the morning, cocktail jugs are available from 10am. Share a pitcher of lychee mojito and a plate of crisp polenta topped with cured salmon, or settle in with pancakes and punch. The interrupted views of Brisbane’s skyline — thank you, beloved Story Bridge — are enough to convince anyone to move to our fair city, stat.  

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As you drink and dine with your American Express, reap all the sweet rewards of being a Card Member. Explore the many ways American Express has your back here.

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