We hopped from Nepal to Italy for the second stop on our Around the World Tour. More precisely we travelled from Brunswick Street to Merthyr Road in New Farm. That is how diverse the Brisbane restaurant scene is – two totally different regional hubs just a few streets apart!
It was a sunny Friday afternoon and the start of a long weekend. We settled in on one of the tables out on the sidewalk. One glance at the menu and wine list and I was struggling to find any logical reason why I needed to go back to work! A long lunch it is then!
Vine is a traditional Italian restaurant whose menu features entrees, salads, ciabattas (for lunch), pastas, mains and desserts. They also have an express lunch special which for $32.90 sorts you out with two courses (either entrée and main or main and dessert) plus a glass of wine.
My dining companion opted for the express lunch however as neither of the mains took my fancy I stuck with the A la Carte. Wine list seemed relatively good with glasses starting from $8 and covering both Australian and Italian varieties.
After a while (it did seem long but then again we were starving so perhaps time was relative) the Entrée surfaced – Bruschetta, which comprised three well sized pieces of bread tomato etc and bocconcini. Although this was technically not my plate I was sneaky and nibbled at one of the pieces (with permission of course).
Mains – Gnocchi with smoked chicken, asparagus, cherry tomatoes and parmesan – yumm. The portion was rather large and filled me up rather quickly (so much so I passed on dessert which as you probably know I rarely do). My only comment is that the gnocchi were slightly rubbery and perhaps needed to be fluffier.
The mushroom risotto looked rather small, though I am not sure if that was because the chef did not make enough or because it was part of the express lunch menu. Either way it was a good risotto, quite al dente, though perhaps a bit bland – which is often a problem with mushroom risottos (or so I find – perhaps I haven’t tasted a great one yet).
As mentioned, unfortunately I was quite gnocchied out and opted for an espresso instead of dessert. Though it was a very tough decision as all the desserts sounded delish! Great place for lunch, would definitely recommend it. Also worth noting that they have a bar area and space inside – you do not have to sit on the sidewalk.
Onto stop 3 – which was originally going to be tonight (i.e. Friday), however I am still quite full from lunch and lacking stamina to take over the next country. Tomorrow? We might be heading to another region – stay tuned for updates!
Address: 5/158 Moray Street, New Farm
Phone: 07 3358 6658
Tue – Fri: 10.00 – 23.00
Sat – Sun: 7.00 – 12.00