Take a dash of Hawaiian smaltz, a truck load of garage sale finds, quirky Queensland humour, lots of piggie goodness and combine with desserts to die for and you've got one of the latest additions to Brisbane's dining and bar scene.
It's been a long time coming but Damien Griffiths has really done himself proud.
From the outside you might wonder what all the fuss is about. The place still looks like the Queensland-style cottages that have always been tucked next door to Limes Hotel in Fortitude Valley.
But walk inside and a world of wonderment awaits. It's hard to know when to stop looking at the eclectic decor and start focussing on the food, but you will find your way. Designed by Alexander Lotersztain, who also had a hand in Limes Hotel, the fit out will surprise you with something new to discover on every visit.
There's six areas to enjoy here -
The Vanguard Beer Garden
If you are looking for a feed this is a good place to start. Check out the whole suckling pig in the huge wood fired oven which head chef David Lindesay told me takes three and a half hours to cook.
It's a hard to choose from the gastro pub style menu which revives so many old faves so maybe work your way through. I started with an authentic 70s style prawn cocktail which my dad would have liked (yes dad, they got the cocktail sauce recipe just right). He also would have lined up for the bowl of salted pork cracking.
K2 fed his inner man with a roast pork roll which he enjoyed but he wanted more sauce - just the way he rolls. He also shared some of my devils on horseback (prunes wrapped in some very tasty bacon.)
Hard to say what I liked best but the chorizo scotched egg was certainly memorable for all the right reasons.
The menu here was designed by Jocelyn Hancock (formerly of Jocelyn's Provisions) and David Lindesay.
By day this spot masquerades as a cosy coffee nook with plenty of tasty pastries.
White Lightning Tiki Bar
Can't decide what to drink here? Just spin the wheel and let it decide for you. I love the real pineapples used for the Pina Colada. They hollow out the inside of the pineapple to make a container for the drink and use the pineapple pulp in the mix along with aged rum and house cream of coconut.
There's a couple of outdoor areas, complete with folding chairs and umbrellas. This whole area is available for private functions and would be awesome for a party.
New York bartending legend Richard Boccato trained up the team to operate with New York snappy style.
Release your inner Ernest in this room but refrain from playing the piano please. There's a definite Queensland tropical ambience here.
The Black Room
Got to say I'm slightly intimidated by this room and it's cabinet contents are sure to provoke interesting dinner table discussion. You are warned!
Alfred and Constance
Bottom line: Wake up Brisbane! You ain't seen anything like Alfred and Constance before.
Best tip: Spend over $25 and Alfred and Constance will cover your parking at Valley Metro Car Park, which is just as well as otherwise I would recommend walking there.
Disclaimer: E,d+bK paid for this meal but took advantage of the free parking offer.