Situated in the old Queensland Rugby Club behind the Pig and Whistle in Eagle Street's Riverside Centre, stands Black Bird Bar and Restaurant, the newest addition to the Brisbane fine dining scene.
Ed+bK Bar Reporter Alexander Stone puts it to the test.
Red carpet, champagne on arrival, amazing oysters, fantastic staff, tasty Old Fashioned drinks on tap - these are the things that stick in my head after the opening of the Ghanem Group’s (Fifth Element, Byblos) new offering.
Opulent could be used to describe the main dining area with its large 12- seater center table on a raised platform illuminated by an upturned bathtub filled with vintage crystal scotch decanters. The spectacular chandelier has a rug designed by Katherine Martin and used in the film The Great Gatsby just to finish it off.
This does not over shadow the food produced by Executive Chef Jake Nicolson and Head Chef Anthony Donalds, both Michelin-stared chefs. Jake describes his menu at Black Bird as “Heritage Australian with a focus on sustainability, rare breeds and whole beast cookery”.
Personally I want to go back and try the Mayura Station Full Blood Wagyu 2kg Tomahawk.
It’s all cooked on an Australian first, an Inferno 96 Wood Grill. The grill's central fire station creates a powerful chimney effect, drawing air through whole pieces of wood and burning them fast enough to provide a continuous supply of fresh coal supply to the grilling stations so your choice cut of beast will always be cooked to perfection.
The seafood on offer is also well worth trying. The oysters are flown to Brisbane and available six hours after they have left the water. Black Bird also has its own oyster beds at Coffin Bay in South Australia.
Sample the Rusty Wire Oysters if you want to treat yourself. Available only in the bar, the Bay Bug Club is a Moreton Bay Bug club sandwich with a light bisque aioli, jamon bacon and gem lettuce on soft white. Tasty.
If you want to go in for a bite to eat I would definitely recommend booking. Grace Likidis the Functions and Events coordinator says she is being swamped with enquiries “I’m taking about 20 enquiries per day.”
Black Bird also hosts an impressive bar. The cocktail menu has been broken down into three sections - Bootlegger, Roaring 20's and Escape This Dry Land. In the Bootlegger section definitely try the Bootleggers Batch of the Week which on the night was an excellent Old Fashioned to my immense satisfaction.
I also got to try the Giggle Water, a sweet combination of Chambord and sparkling wine served up in a raspberry sugar rimmed coupette. I didn't get to try any of the Caribbean themed Dry Land cocktails so I think I must of to go back and investigate this part of the list more thoroughly!
Have you been to Black Bird yet? Or, more importantly, have you tried the tomahawk steak yet?
Disclaimer: Ed+bK was a guest at the opening of Blackbird Bar & Restaurant.