Brisbane in a Weekend

My great friend, Melly, invited me up to Brisbane for a weekend to hang at her place.   I accepted and arrived Friday afternoon.

Unexpected Greeting to Brisbane

Now, jokes abound about Queenslanders and their foibles, some warranted, most not.  However, when you are literally “greeted” at the airport by a bona fide Wally (big blue pants and red and white striped top… and a moustache), it does set a particular standard for the weekend to come.  Wally dealt with (he insisted on driving me to the city, I insisted on sending him on his way and alerted security), I gifted Melly a much harder and longer hug than she likely anticipated.

As all girlfriends do as soon as they see each other, we rushed our conversations and finished one another’s sentences as we took the scenic route back to her place via a juice bar for a refresher on the way.

Image of two summery drinks in short glasses adorned with pretty patterned paper straws
a cool and refreshing start to my Brisbane weekend

Upon arrival at Melly and Adam’s, I was given a wet welcome by Saffron, my friends’ miniature poodle.  Gorgeous, isn’t she?  We took a walk around Chapel Hill and explored many garden frontages.  There is a definite “wilderness” aspect to Brisbane, leading right into the city.  Being summer, everything has taken on a life of its own.  The tropical style plants give an air of relaxation and I couldn’t help feel that I was on holidays.  The lay of the land is full of hills, the ones where manual drivers break into a sweat at the top of a right hand turn.  I was constantly waiting for the beach to appear at the crest of each hill, such was the sunny and easy environment.  Hard to believe it’s a further 45 minutes to reach the coast.

Image of a white freshly washed and slightly damp poodle with load of character sitting on her handcrafted bed of love hearts
Saffron sitting on the love heart dog bed I made her last year
Image of a wooden door knob sign hung on a shelf with the words "not you again"
with friends like that….!

After a mostly liquid dinner, we chatted into the wee hours before heading to bed.

Saturday adventures

Saturday mornings are for coffee and wandering.  We instilled ourselves at the local and ordered tasty paninis and double shot coffees.  The perfect sustenance for our road trip around the outskirts of Brisbane.  Some highlights:

Chapel Hill/ Indooroopilly – Suburban yet close to the city fringe.  The best of both worlds with well maintained homes from the post war era.

Image of the Doughnut Time sign complete with a doughnut shaped clock stating always a good time for doughnuts
this place!

Paddington – fabulous inner city area with cute terraces and homes and lots of quirky shopfronts and spaces.

Graceville/Sherwood – set on the river like much of Brisbane, these areas have a beautiful and endearing vibe.  We drove around the suburbs, taking in the homes with gorgeous frontages, teasing us with their prettiness.

Image of a stunning queenslander home complete with a brick chimney down the side of the house painted in olive toned grey and a beautifully finished front verandah, stairs to the entrance and picket fence all in white
this filly sold at auction on the day we visited
Image of the iconic cream Graceville Uniting church complete with full bell steeple and red roof tiles
Graceville Uniting Church

Welcome to Goodness Gracious Cafe.  Whether you are in need of a caffeine fix or a tipple, this little gem is your go to.  This gorgeous suburb knows how to entertain a guest and the few eateries were all completely packed to the rafters and gave off a fun and easy vibe.  When it comes to choosing a spot to pull up a chair I am guilty of judging a book by its cover.  When I see signage as cute and crafty as GGC, I want in!

An Image of a sign in the form of a logo on the side of a well known Graceville cafe the Goodness Gracious Cafe with all the lettering and detail done in fake grass
crafty and catchy signage

Saturday night lead us to the Suburban Social Neighbourhood, a new joint just opened on a busy corner in Chapel Hill and scarily close to Melly and Adam’s.  Oh, the drinks!  Their cocktails have some amazing ability to reach liquid umami.  My long island iced tea was the best I’ve had and Adam agrees.  There is some incredible tangy freshness that comes through with each sip that is so gloriously refreshing it takes you straight to the Bahamas (because, you know, I would totally know how sitting in the Bahamas feels!).  The decor helps, the banquet style seating covered in a fun printed fabric.  Oh, and the food?  Don’t get me started!  Ah-ma-zing!  That calamari.  Those chips – those chips are worth the trip alone.  I’m salivating right now.

An Image of Rebecca and one of her best friends Melly at the Chapel Hill Suburban Social Neighbourhood complete with cocktails in hand
Melly and Me

 

Image of fabric used to cover the bench seat cushions in the new local where Rebecca's friend Melly lives
fab fabric

Sunday adventures

Sunday mornings, don’t you love them?  Nothing better than a market and the market at Eagle Farm Market is a corker!  Food, glorious food.  Live jazz. Gorgeous clothing boutiques. Sunshine and just nice.  A favourite was the clever and indulgent Health and Beauty from the Hive stall with natural honey products.  Clever name too!

Image of Rebecca holding a find at the Eagle Farm Markets a daily moisturising miracle So-Ho-Mish from the Health & Beauty from the Hive stall
Health & Beauty from the Hive
Image of a fancy chalk board sign for the Closet Cleanout Alley at the Eagle Farm Markets
one person’s trash is another person’s treasure
Image of a close up of some chutney's and relishes sold at one of the Eagle Farm Market stalls
sold!

 

Sunday afternoon is time to relax (as opposed to Sunday mornings which is time to well, relax).  We chose to do so at a friend’s place in Mt Cotton.  Set amongst an acre of trees sat Bernie’s home.  His housemate, Diablo, was a lovely host, entertaining us with a myriad of trips into the bushy scrub to find his favourite toy we kept hurling into the wilderness.

Image of Bernie's black Cockerspaniel Diablo
a lovely host

Diablo made the perfect playdate for Saffron.  Pizzas were on the menu and it was my turn to give back to the hosts so I created some easy flavours on Lebanese bread bases for a cheeky lunch.  Think lots of olives, prosciutto, feta and mountains of herbs.  Bernie backed it up with his collection of whiskies, including an Australian clear version from Sydney that was a standout.

Image of a bottle of the Archie Rose White Rye Whisky
smooth white rye whisky

Get Archie Rose White Rye Whisky here.

We backed it up with an evening drive through Redlands and a pitt stop at a waterside pub.

All in all, a pretty awesome weekend. I reckon I could set up home here myself.

Rebecca x

Health Warning: Staying with Adam and Melly may lead to addiction, particularly to coffee (mornings) and long island iced tea (evenings).