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Four Ways to Take Advantage of Brisbane's Stellar Outdoor Spaces This Summer

From idyllic picnic spots to summer Sunday sessions, there are plenty of reasons to head outside if you're in the River City this season.
By Cailin Sheppard
January 24, 2022
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By Cailin Sheppard
January 24, 2022
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If we had a dollar for every time we heard someone say "it's the humidity that gets you," we'd probably have quite a nice bit of pocket money. Summer in Brisbane is no doubt a doozy but we are also lucky enough to be prepared for it here with plenty of cool, outdoor spots that are ideal for the steamy weather.

We've teamed up with White Claw Hard Seltzer to help you stay refreshed and show you just how many ways you can take full advantage of those outdoor spaces all summer long with riverside dining, park hangs and even a few festivals to bring on the party.

All venue trading hours and events are subject to change based on COVID-19 developments. Check with the venue for the latest details, and stay up to date with current COVID-19 restrictions by visiting Queensland Health.

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TAKE YOUR MEAL AL FRESCO

There's nothing like stuffing yourself silly while simultaneously getting your required dose of vitamin D. Brisbane has many, many great outdoor dining options — here are just a handful of the best.

Popolo, South Bank

If it's an Italian summer vibe you're craving, look no further than Popolo. Dine in on pasta, pizzas and piatti piccoli (small plates) with spritzes, beer and local and Italian wine on offer. Or, order a picnic basket to takeaway to River Quay park on the restaurant's front doorstep. The picnic feeds two and includes antipasto, arancini, fries and a pizza to share.

Will & Flow, Brisbane City

In late 2020, the brown snake finally received the overwater hangout it deserves. Will & Flow is a cafe, restaurant and bar dishing up seafood, woodfired pizzas and bar snacks to hungry city-dwellers. If you're thirsty, there's wine, beer, cocktails and four different flavours of spritzes to choose from. Sip and snack your way through the menu during a breezy afternoon in the city.

Yoko, Brisbane City

Wine and dine riverside to keep cool this summer with cocktails and izakaya-style eats at Yoko Dining. Owned by Jonathan Barthelmess, the easy-going but well-executed service and food of this restaurant — along with its killer location in the middle of the action — makes it one of the best options at Howard Smith Wharves. Stop in for edamame, miso-glazed eggplant and a yuzu slushie or stay a while for an all-out Japanese-inspired feast by the water.

The Gardens Club, Brisbane City

It may come as no surprise to you the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens is home to a cute, leafy cafe. Explore the gardens on a sunny day — or if La Niña gets in the way, a wet one for rainforest vibes — and pop in to The Gardens Club for coffee, brekkie or lunch on the terrace. The heritage-listed cottage looks out onto the gardens with a shaded patio out front, and is an excellent choice for a chilled morning among the trees.

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SIP SELTZERS IN A BUZZING BEER GARDEN

Getting cosy in a dimly lit bar is for the cooler months. Right now, you need to take advantage of the sunshine and long afternoons that stretch into stellar sunsets. If you're finding a beer or wine too heavy-going, then you'll be pleased to know the spots listed below stock White Claw in all manner of tasty flavours.

X Cargo, Fortitude Valley

As far as day venues in the Valley go, X Cargo is up there with the best. This openair bar and pub is a multi-level party hub that boasts live DJs, food — like duck spring rolls, chicken karaage toasties and tempura prawn buns — and cocktails aplenty. Sundays are ideal for swinging by to sip White Claws in the beer garden with mates.

Riverland, Brisbane City

Take in amazing Story Bridge views, without having to worry about any summer storms rolling in, while undercover at Riverland. Here, you'll find a rotating selection of street food vendors that have set up shop inside the venue serving everything from smoked barbecue meats to Himalayan-style dumplings. The drinks list is a bit more consistent and always fun, with cocktails, 16 tap beers and ciders, and a large range of bottled and canned bevs, including White Claw. To pair with those top-notch eats and drinks, expect live tunes from 6pm on Thursdays and retro beats every Friday night.

Osbourne Hotel, Fortitude Valley

If the thought of an ice-cold White Claw and a pizza in a light- and plant-filled pub makes you weak at the knees, The Osbourne might be just the place for you. But sunlight and plants don't automatically mean al fresco — this place has all the charm of an outdoor space with the comfort of being indoors. The Ann Street watering hole is a haven for office lunch-goers, sports fans and big groups alike. Head there on Sunday arvos for live acoustic tunes from local musos.

The Prince Consort, Fortitude Valley

Leafy green hanging plants, colourful pastels and crisp white picnic tables — The Prince Consort's garden bar is made for summer sessions. Grab a few mates to while away the steamy nights with trivia on Tuesdays, drag bingo, big sports games on the big screen and house music every Sunday till 3am. If you're feeling peckish, enjoy classic pub grub, like fries, woodfired pizza and inventive burgers and wash it down with a White Claw.

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HAVE A BOOGIE AT AN OUTDOOR GIG

It almost seems too good to be true, but yes, they're back. After a pretty grim past two years, festival season upon us again, and it's time to make up for all those lost moments. Check out our recommendations for where to head for the outdoor party season.

The Long Sunset

As festivals finally come roaring back into summer, new events are popping up everywhere, too. The Long Sunset is one of the most recent to be announced. With the backdrop of Canungra at which to marvel, the festival is set to showcase the Scenic Rim in all its glory and some knockout local acts to boot. Catch Angus and Julia Stone, Ball Park Music, Babe Rainbow and Hatchie on February 12, 2022.

For the Love

Music and lifestyle festival For the Love is heading back to the Gold Coast on February 26 to bring the likes of Crooked Colours, Dom Dolla, Mallrat and Running Touch to the stage. The one-day event is being held at the breezy seaside location of Doug Jennings Park in Southport and will see beats pumping, drinks flowing and, no doubt, a lot of dancing.

This That

It's hard to believe they'll be able to fit all of the acts playing at This That Festival into one day. The lineup is stacked, to say the least: Client Liaison, Hayden James, Polish Club, San Cisco, Spacey Jane and The Presets (to name a few) are all on the bill. Taking place at Sandstone Point Hotel on March 5, it's the perfect way to extend summer in Brissie.

Sunday Social on the Green

This free South Bank ritual makes for a chilled afternoon with friends, family or a date. Pack a picnic of food and your drink of choice (BYO seltzers) and nab a spot in the shade or the sunshine as local musicians serenade you at River Quay Green. The lineup for January is looking pretty top-notch, with the likes of The New Black and Birdman Randy set to perform.

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Brisbane City Flickr

ROLL OUT YOUR PICNIC BLANKET

There are few things better than a summer park sesh, whether you're taking the dog for a walk, flying your drone or catching up with mates after a hard day's work. There's something so laconically inviting about a cheeky bev in the neighbourhood park, and Brisbane has some cracking spots where you can make that happen. Grab a few White Claws and enjoy the sunshine in our faves.

New Farm Park

Heaps of different spaces to choose from, gorgeous scenery and good airflow from the neighbouring river — New Farm Park is a classic for a reason. The inner-city institution is a go-to for locals and visitors alike for celebrations, catch-ups and long afternoons lounging on a picnic blanket. BYO booze, cheese, dogs and a frisbee for a day which can be as laidback or as lavish as you want it to be.

Roma Street Parkland

Roma Street Parkland takes up 16 hectares of prime city land, so you're bound to find a quiet spot among the greenery without having to wander too far in the summer heat. All you need to make the most of your time here is good friends, good food and good drinks to match. Pro tip: a fresh cheese like burrata or feta with a splash of vinegar and tomatoes will go swimmingly with a natural lime- or watermelon-flavoured White Claw.

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For more information on White Claw, head to the website

Top image: This That, Jordan Munns

Published on January 24, 2022 by Cailin Sheppard
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