For specialty coffee, pastry havens and breakfast bowls:
Mr Buttergoods: This is the new kid on the block – it’s heaven for bread lovers, pastry fanatics, choux bomb connoisseurs and appreciators of all things butter based. You need to get your hands on a Curly Wurly eclair, stat.
Barefoot (Barista): An institution for southern locals who appreciate great food, chilled vibes and killer brews. Barefoot recently moved across the street into a schmick new home and still holds its spot on the mantle as one of the most popular breakfast and brunch spots in the city.
Espresso Moto: Caffeine and motorbikes combine in delicious fashion here – there’s Allpress coffee firing on the daily and a delicious rotating menu that’s dotted with boundary-pushing specials like fried pork terrine with poached eggs.
Mr Bengel: This is a true neighbourhood hang. You’ll find an all-day menu showcasing the best bites of the season, fresh-baked sweet and savouries, top-notch coffee and a chilled vibe that will make you feel right at home.
Wildernis Cafe & Bar: Unwind for breakfast, brunch or lunch at this sun-kissed space. By day there’s a vibrant healthy menu and Locale Espresso, which makes a delightful transition into tapas and espresso martinis by night.
For bug-tail burgers, katsu curries and saucy ribs:
Lester & Earl: Situated directly above Mr Buttergoods, Lester & Earl is the ultimate for American-style eats. Think saucy ribs, succulent brisket, hot wings, burgers and a quality selection of craft beers.
Burgster: While its name may scream burgers (note: they are great burgs) this delicious eatery dispenses so much more – get your mitts on crispy chicken skins, jalapeno poppers, crumbed button mushrooms or choose from the fresh oyster bar. There’s also a fine series of tinnies on offer.
Hachi Japanese Restaurant: This unassuming gem has been delighting locals with its modern, fresh and fast Japanese fare for years. If you’re hard to please when it comes to okonomiyaki, sashimi and katsu, then this is where you want to be.
AVVIA: This dreamy beachside space is where you’ll find great coffee and cafe fare by day (hello, buttermilk waffles) and impressive seaside dinners by night (seared scallops with roasted cauliflower, anyone?). Oh, and there’s a cute-as-a-button flower pop-up out the front on weekends.
Goodness Gracias: Nestled along the Gold Coast Highway, this golden-hued Mexican hot spot pumps out fresh burritos, zesty salads, tacos, quesadillas, flavour-packed grain bowls and sweet eats like chilli-chocolate brownies to satisfy your lunch and dinner cravings.
For charcuterie, seaside sashimi and whisky flights:
8th Ave Terrace: Start with afternoon cocktails and sobrassada-topped ciabatta on the open-air balcony, then elegantly work your way through the wine list and prepare your tastebuds for the chef’s ever-evolving seasonal menu. Goats cheese souffle? Yes please.
The Scottish Prince: Situated below 8th Ave Terrace, this nautical-inspired whisky den serves French-style tartines, share plates, cheese platters and charcuterie spreads alongside one of the coast’s most significant whisk(e)y offerings.
Balboa Italian: If you notice an enticing aroma of bubbling woodfired pizza in the air, it’s coming from Balboa. Along with pizzas, this two-storey Italian eatery dishes up handmade pasta and a soul-warming assembly of antipasti. We’ll take a negroni and a fennel-sausage pizza, thanks.
The Collective: When one friend wants tacos, the other wants pizza, and all you feel like is a cheeseburger – consider your (first-world) problem solved at The Collective. If you’re yet to experience this five-kitchens-in-one situation, consider this a nudge. Start with cocktails on the rooftop while you decide what to order.
San Sebastian: Fancy nibbling pintxos (Spanish bar snacks) and sipping cocktails in the sea breeze? Let the San Sebastian team put flavour-packed bites like haloumi, pear, jamon and honey reduction in your mouth and everything will be okay.
For creative times, uncrowded beach dips and picnic parties:
There’s plenty of eating and sipping to be done in Palm Beach, so you’ll need to work up an appetite first. Gather the crew and ignite your creative side with a workshop at dreamy beachside studio The Craft Parlour, or indulge in some retail therapy and snap up some goodness from local spaces The Haven Trader or Pennant Surf Store. Those keen for a beach dip will find Palmy far less crowded than its popular (and busier) northern sibling Burleigh – the dog beach on the southern side of Talle Creek is a good place to start (and pat other people’s pups). Or you can steer clear of the waves and head south to the Pirate Park for a sneaky SUP session – be sure to stop in to The Store Artisan Grocer on your way there and grab some olives, a hunk of cheese and a fresh baguette to nibble on by the creek after your paddle.