11 of the best restaurants on the Sunshine Coast
With a local produce pedigree worth celebrating, you don’t have to hunt far to find restaurants on the Sunshine Coast that are showcasing the region on a plate.
It would be remiss of us to compile any sort of food guide for the Sunshine Coast and not include Spirit House in Yandina. That’s only because this award-winning restaurant – in a fairytale setting, tucked in tropical gardens with tables surrounding a beautiful pond – is like a fine wine; only getting better with age.
You’ll need to book in advance, especially if you want to dine on a Friday or Saturday night within the next decade (okay, we exaggerate a little), and whatever you do, order the whole crispy fish. Factor in a pre-dinner cocktail at the onsite Hong Sa bar, beforehand.
Inside a glass-fronted dining room hovering over the Noosa River, Wasabi takes everything you think you know about Japanese cuisine and elevates it to intricate and inventive new heights.
Bestowed with two chefs hats, Wasabi pairs just-caught seafood with hyper-local produce and rare vegetables and herbs plucked from the restaurant’s own Honeysuckle Hill farm. Leave the ordering decisions entirely up to the chef with the seven or nine-course Omakase menu.
Flame Hill Vineyard
It wouldn’t be a long lunch without a glorious view and an interesting wine list to match, and Flame Hill Vineyard in Montville ticks both off the list, throwing wine tasting into the deal.
Overlooking the working cattle property and vineyard, this homestead-turned restaurant and cellar door is the perfect Sunday drive destination with a seasonal-driven menu complemented by estate-grown, hand-picked wines.
The Long Apron
Tucked away within Spicers Clovelly Estate in Montville, this two-hatted French-inspired restaurant is a popular choice for celebration dining. Opt for two- or three-course a la carte or go all out with the five-course tasting menu but don’t miss the beeswax sorbet for dessert.
You’ll find this place heaving on a Friday and Saturday night when locals flock to The Wharf in Mooloolaba for cheap and cheerful Asian fusion eats like crispy eggplant chips and local prawn & mushroom dumplings. Arrive early to nab a seat out on the deck overlooking the water or head upstairs to the bar for spiked bubble tea and bites.
From the traditional tonkotsu to the sesame-laden tantanmen and tom yum tonkotsu ramen topped with Mooloolaba prawns, the rich flavours and cozy vibe are what will bring you back to this Maroochydore restaurant time and time again. If you’re not into noodles, tuck into all your favourite Japanese snacks like karaage and edamame with chilli salt. There are vegan and gluten-free options available, too.
Take a drive to Cooroy for lunch at this slick brewpub and you’ll be flipping open your real estate app looking for a country escape before dessert is served. There are pub-priced lunch specials available every day while dinner ranges from casual platters to Turkish-style pizzas and mains like stout-braised lamb shoulder or prawn and sand crab cannelloni. Wash it all down with one of the seven beers on tap in this small-batch bespoke brewery.
When you’ve got a hankering for tacos that no Old El Paso kit will fix, make a beeline to this cheeky laneway taqueria in Noosa Junction for its Cali-Mexican menu running from street corn and beef tostadas to BBQ jackfruit tacos. Having margaritas on tap is also pretty boss.
Altitude on Montville
If you’re headed for the hills, factor in a lunch at Altitude for sweeping views and a tapas-style menu. With highlights like baked local brie infused with thyme and garlic, and moules mariniere you might be tempted to order another bottle and overnight in the onsite apartments.
Occupying prime waterfront real estate in what used to be the Mooloolaba Yacht Club, this Hamptons-esque restaurant puts the spotlight on seafood. Start with a Mooloolaba prawn roll, then perhaps some local tuna sashimi and migrate towards a whole steamed fish to share. Add a bottle of your favourite rosé and you’ve got the recipe for a rather wonderful afternoon.
Harrys on Buderim
Housed in a 139-year-old Heritage style homestead, Harry’s on Buderim lured two hatted chef Stuart Bell from Victoria to take over the reins of the long-running fine diner in 2018. The menu champions local produce with seared yellowfin tuna, Fraser Isle scallops and finger lime risotto all making an appearance. Take a stroll to Buderim Falls in the adjoining park afterwards.