Bird's Nest Yakitori Portside

This Japanese-inspired Brisbane chain has started serving its grilled skewers at Portside Wharf.
Sarah Ward
October 17, 2023


When Emi Kamada and Marie Yokoyama headed to Japan to study with traditional chefs — and, specifically, to learn everything they needed to know about yakitori — they weren't the first to visit the country and feel inspired. But the pair did make the most of that sensation, creating Brisbane's expanding Bird's Nest Yakitori chain.

The brand started in 2013 in West End, with its OG site now boasting three sibling venues — including the Portside Wharf outpost. The Hamilton spot joins Bird's Nest Yakitori's outposts in Fortitude Valley and Toowong, too, the latter just for takeaways. All four share a key focus, of course: grilled Japanese skewers.

The latest Bird's Nest Yakitori has made its home in a 100-square-metre space, with getting cosy aptly on the menu. Diners can choose between indoor and al fresco dining — and if you go with the former, you'll eat while peering into the open kitchen, with the bottle-lined bar also in sight, plus under atmospheric lighting.

The mood: casual but authentic and also intimate, in a place that takes its design cues from the nation that clearly holds significant influence over all things Bird's Nest Yakitori. In other words, it's an enticing place for a drink over a bite, including picking from cocktails, sake and Japanese brews.

If you've been to one of the brand's other locations, you'll know what to expect food-wise. The skewers range from chicken thigh, chicken skin, chicken meatball and pork belly to zucchini, oyster mushrooms and grape tomatoes; however, that's just the start of the culinary lineup.

Rice bowls are also a feature, including charcoal chicken, both katsu and karaage chicken, slow-cooked wagyu, yakiniku, teriyaki salmon and eel — while Japanese burgers, wings and gyoza are also on offer.


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