Best eats: top restaurants on the Gold Coast

Here's where to eat out in the Gold Coast, a city that is fast becoming one of Australia's top dining spots.

A spread of food at The Tropics, on the Gold Coast.
  • Celeste Mitchell
  • November 2019
  • Updated November 2020

Popcorn ice-cream. Barramundi with warrigal greens. And wagyu dumplings. The Gold Coast food scene is unrecognisable from what it was a decade ago. Here are the fresh new places surprising diners for all the right reasons.

The Tropic at Burleigh Pavilion

It may be the formal half of the sprawling Burleigh Pavilion – from the same folks as Mrs Sippy and Manly Wharf Hotel – but with a beach at the backdoor it is still the kind of place where you can go from sand to starters. Headed up by hatted chef Guillaume Zika, seafood steals the menu limelight but the woodfired pig bun is on a stage all its own. Teamed with a broad wine list and locals Balter and Stone & Wood on the taps, it screams date night.
3/43 Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads, 07 5661 9050,

Restaurant Labart

Slip inside this multi-award winning neighbourhood diner in Burleigh and you could be in your favourite Parisian bistro. Low lighting and carefully choreographed service set the tone for the daily-changing menu by ex-Sydney chef Alex Munoz Labart. Courses debut in sync with the killer playlist, spanning Talking Heads to instrumental hip hop. The Burleigh Baker baguette with caramelised butter is a revelation before you even set eyes on the artfully prepared seafood or popcorn ice-cream.
8 West Street, Burleigh Heads, 07 5576 3498, opens in new window

A prawn dish from Restaurant Labart on the Gold Coast.
The daily-changing menu at Restaurant Labart focuses on seasonal, fresh ingredients.

Mr Hizola’s

The ethos is go hard or go home at this modern Cantonese banquet hall in Burleigh. At AUD $50 a head, the Emperor’s Feast is the cheapest way to a deeply satisfying food coma. Pair the likes of Wagyu dumplings and butterfly prawns with classic lemon chicken and Wuxi-style lamb ribs and kick it in the rump with a Hong Kong Spice cocktail made on Kaffir-lime infused vodka.
1730 Gold Coast Highway, Burleigh Heads, 07 5576 3458, opens in new window

Miss Moneypenny’s

The Noosa institution expands to Broadbeach with chef Braden White celebrating first-class produce such as barramundi from the Whitsundays – served with warrigal greens and a clam and potato puree – and New England sirloin accompanied by truffled cabbage and smoked mushroom. The winsome wood and terracotta fit-out makes for a space that remains intimate during even the busiest times.
50 Surf Parade, Broadbeach, 07 56 550 785,

Frankies Brasserie

The focus at this smart bistro is creating dishes inspired by premium local produce such as scallops in shell or mango sorbet with honeycomb. With an Australian-focused wine list to boot, it is clear Melbourne foodie veteran Frank Heaney and head chef Roberto Dimiv are staunch localists. Add in brunch on weekends and this moody new 50-seater is fast becoming the popular new kid on the Broadbeach block.
1/20 Queensland Ave, Broadbeach, +61 0401 976 000, opens in new window

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