This week, Matt and I scored ourselves an invite to Paddock to Gate, an exclusive dining experience inside Brisbane Airport‘s International Terminal. The event aimed to showcase the local producers, food outlets and delicious drinks on offer for travellers at Australia’s third busiest airport.
My mind immediately flicked back to the meals I’d eaten at the airport in the past. Chips from Red Rooster, a takeaway coffee, burritos from Mad Mex… I began to wonder what this event could be! I mean, airports aren’t notorious for offering fine-dining experiences, right? Usually, we just grab some quick takeaway food and scoff it down while mooching the free wifi.
Well, last night we found ourselves enjoying incredible food at a dining setting straight out of my daydreams/the pages of a magazine. The food and drink were incredible (not a chip in sight!) and I was pleasantly shocked to learn all the fresh produce used to create the meals + the tasty pre-dinner bites and drinks we enjoyed are available in the airport for others too. Turns out, you actually can get a fantastic meal before you fly and the experience really changed my mind on just what’s on offer at BNE airport.
I gotta say, it’s also fantastic to see local produce and local businesses being showcased at the airport. So many international travellers pass through, it’s fantastic to know they’re getting a taste of Brisbane, whether they’re able to leave the airport or not.
Here are some photos of what went down and, hopefully, a little in-transit inspiration for anyone travelling through or out of Brisbane International Airport. Now we can all kick off our adventures with good food before we fly!
A long, winding table was set up right in the middle of Brisbane International Airport’s departures area. It looked straight off the pages of a styled magazine shoot, with lush platters of cheese, nuts and fruits in the centre.
Matt and I made a beeline for the Woombye Cheese Company‘s tasting station. You guys, the Triple Cream Brie is something to behold – I had about five samples then ate more of the cheese platters on the table. You can get your hands on amazing cheese platters pre-departure at Bar Corretto.
Next, we moved on to trying some incredible muesli from The Muesli Folk. Now, look, I love muesli and this stuff was fantastic! All the ingredients are beautifully fresh and locally sourced, making for mouth-watering muesli that goes perfectly with coconut yoghurt. Best of all, they only use a little Canadian maple syrup so there’s no overpowering sugar taste going on! You can grab a Merlo Coffee and The Muesli Folk muesli from Bar Corretto at the International Terminal.
Matt made the most of all the great booze on offer, sinking a few delicious beers from Burleigh Brewing Co, Newstead Brewing Co and a couple of glasses of wine from Sirromet! I love that Brisbane Airport is supporting local businesses and getting our very best food and beverage in front of visitors (and locals, like us!) You can grab a local wine or beer at Windmill & Co, Brisbane River Grill and other spots at the airport.
It was time to dine and I wasted no time in finding my seat and getting all settled in for the feast.
Dinner was served! The carnivores were treated to slow-roasted Darling Downs beef brisket, rosemary Kipfler potatoes, salsa verde and iceberg lettuce with buttermilk dressing. Matt and I, the herbivores, tucked into roasted aubergine with garlic and cumin served with Kipfler potatoes and green beans. Incredible meals like these are on offer at Brisbane River Grill at the Airport (who knew!!!???)
Because they know exactly what the people want, the team served up not one but TWO desserts! Yassss! First up, vanilla pannacotta with fresh local berries, toasted muesli from The Muesli Folk and a delectable toffee shard. Then, we got stuck into homemade walnut and coffee cookie-crusted goat cheese cheesecake served with Merlo ristretto-infused creme anglaise. Both were soooo good! I ended up covering my pannacotta in the Merlo creme anglaise – it was heaven. Desserts like these are available at Windmill & Co and The Botanist! Pre-flight dessert? Don’t mind if I do!
If you want to watch we got up to, here’s a little video from my Insta-Stories. Needless to say, we had an amazing time and I was really blown away by how much good food is on offer at Brisbane International Airport. I genuinely had no idea and, now I know, I’ll be making a beeline for the cheese and dessert spots.
Need some more tips for Brisbane International Airport? Watch this…
Phoebe is a travel writer and photographer with a love for storytelling and making people laugh. Matt is a videographer and photographer with a passion for the great outdoors and big adventures. Together we inspire big adventures through our guides, videos, vlogs and photographs. Find out more about us here.