Piaf, South Bank

I'd heard a lot about Piaf before I ventured through the door, especially from those who proclaim it their favorite restaurant! (Thanks Princess Zoe!)

Located on busy Grey Street, it's simple, clean decor is an appealing respite from the street, but quite open and airy.

We had booked early - 6.30pm - for dinner which was a bit of a stretch for some of the group. However we were told Piaf has a 6.30 or 8pm sitting and nothing in between. While I understand the appropriateness of this on a busy night of the week - maybe Thursday to Saturday - it seemed a little extreme for a Tuesday night in Brisbane. I thought, 'the food is going have to be very good to get me back here at 6.30 for dinner again'. And the food was good but I'm still struggling with the 6.30 sitting.

The entree menu was filled with tempting offerings - escargot with pink peppercorns, garlic and tarragon cream sauce; citrus cured salmon with dill dressing, caperberries and crisp baguette or beef carpaccio with pecorino, croutons and horseradish dressing - all priced at $12.

There's also a light meals offering with terrines and salads priced at $16.  That's a great idea for those who want something in between.

Our choices from the $22 mains section were-



pea and feta salad

Our choices for mains included duck breast with braised red cabbage, broccolini and blueberry sauce; atlantic salmon with a salad of dried tomato, artichoke and salsa verde; and pumpkin gnocchi with spinach, cherry tomatoes, pinenuts and pecorino. My gnocchi was a real stand out - beautifully light and perfectly complemented by the sauce. I could have it again right now. My dinner companions equally enjoyed their dishes.

One of the more surprising hits of the night was the mixed peas with mint and fetta salad $8 that we chose as an accompaniment.  It was fresh, light and extremely moreish. So popular we tried, fairly successfully, to create it at home a few nights later.

The smart amongst the group chose to have lemon curd tartlet with Italian meringue which was another stand out. Nothing like slightly tart lemon curd with a good creamy meringue - delicious.

I was keen to try out Max Brenner's new South Bank offering so we walked around the corner only to find a queue that snaked right out the door. Enquiry revealed 30 minutes in the queue before we would even be able to order.  We took our lead from the two year old who was throwing a tantrum on the floor and decided the wait would be too long.  Coffee at Sardine Tin was a very handsome compromise.

I would have to say this restaurant is one that really offers a good package of excellent food combined with attentive service. Now if I could only get a booking at 7pm.

Bottom line: Put this one on your must try list.

2/182 Grey St South Bank, Brisbane +61 7 3846 5026