Food trucks have reshaped the casual dining industry to the point where you can get gourmet treats at markets, beaches, events and basically anywhere people gather en masse. The only problem is that you usually have to seek them out or otherwise find yourself in the same location by some happy accident — such is the blessing/curse of food on wheels. Until now.
Enter Welcome to Bowen Hills, a permanent indoor-outdoor food and drinks venue where the nosh is supplied by a rotating cavalcade of the finest food trucks in Australia. This is the second such dining venture from the 100 Burgers Group, and if you've been to their first venue in Melbourne, Welcome to Thornbury, then you would already have experienced the felicity of dining in such a setting. Welcome to Bowen Hills occupies space in the reimagined Dairy Hall and Sugar Building of the Brisbane Showgrounds and pays homage to the history of the location with little touches everywhere. And it's not just in the design — you'll find it in the drinks as well, with nostalgic cocktails that riff on Ekka treats like the strawberry sundae.
Boasting a rotating roster of food trucks, a gin bar dubbed Swill and full capacity for events and functions, Welcome to Bowen Hills is definitely one to keep on your radar
The main bar is aptly called the Dairy Hall, and features a long bar so there will never be much of a queue for your favourite drinks. There are splashes of colour everywhere, with plenty of vibrant colours and wooden accents. The concrete flooring adds a sense of the industrial to the aesthetic, which is easily offset with the plentiful greenery and outdoor aspect. Built to accommodate Brisbane's relentless heat, there are air-conditioned sections and plenty of cool spaces for relaxing.
If you're someone who can never decide on what to eat from the menu, then rest easy friend, because at Welcome to Bowen Hills the focus is on choice. With a rotating roster of food trucks (check out the current lineup on the website) changing every four weeks, you will be able to lock in your favourites ahead of time. Food wise, no two months will be the same — but you'll be spoiled for choice with food trucks like Mr Burger, Rolling Stone Mobile Woodfired Pizza, Koma Sliders, King of the Wings, Bruce the Food Truck, Salt Meats Cheese, I Heart Calamari and Mac from Way Back.
The beer offering at Welcome to Bowen Hills is nothing short of incredible, with 68 taps and 17 products available. You'll find Carlton Draught Brewery Fresh unpasteurised beer, and Brisbane classics like XXXX jostling for space with Balter beers and Newstead Brewing Co. options, to name just a couple. The wine list features a well-rounded range of local and international drops, with plenty of organic and natural wines available. As far as cocktails go there are share jugs, tikis, the usual classics and a few must-try drinks on the list. When Swill, the gin bar on-site, goes live in March you can expect to find an intimate and relaxed setting where the focus is on exceptional gins from around the world.
Images: Savannah van der Niet