Dining out in Mooloolaba
Dining out in Mooloolaba means making choices. The range of dining options is extensive. There are so many different types of dining available – from the a traditional take-away, through to fine dining experiences at Spice Bar and Cherry Blossom; from the intimate atmosphere of small coffee bars through to the bustle and energy of an Irish pub; from the deceptive simplicity of a sushi bar to the energy of a popular Thai take-away; from classic French cuisine to modern Australian. It’s all here in Mooloolaba.
There are different seafood cruises available from enjoying a cruise around the canals on the M. V. Mudjimba with lunch at The Wharf Tavern through to the Seafood lunch or sunset cruise with Coastal Cruises who will order your fresh seafood when you step on board their boat and then pick it up from the fish market as you cruise around the canals. You can also enjoy Sailing with Brian and his team from Set Sail at The Yachtie with their sunset sail in a catamaran with nibbles and drinks.
Sea food is the perennial favourite with Northwind guests. Each restaurant seems to have a signature seafood dish. For calamari – that fiendishly difficult to cook but oh, so wonderful when it’s done well seafood there are two places that stand out for us: Karma Waters, less than 100 meters from Northwind, does the best salt and pepper calamari we’ve ever had. The salad served with it enhances it . They will also prepare a gluten free version. The Edge is a newcomer to the Mooloolaba scene. It is on the Wharf. The calamari is superb and gluten free, they also do a wonderful gf battered fish.
Hot Pipis serves a sea food curry that has become its signature dish. They also cater for special dietary needs, you just have to ask the helpful staff. The dessert chef at Hot Pipi’s is a dessert wiz as is the team at Spice Bar.
For Indian food you have several restaurants to choose from; from the licensed Shalimar opposite the Surf Club on Mooloolaba Esplanade, to Indian Brothers near Macdonalds or the café next to Northwind – Spice Grill – do not confuse it with Spice Bar which is on the other side of Northwind!.
The Yacht Club is gaining a great reputation for dining in Mooloolaba. About half way along Parkyn Parade, the setting is stunning. The dining area is right beside the marina with views over the canals. The calamari with watermelon and feta salad is a real treat, as is their crab cakes with mango salad. This is also available as gluten free. There tapas are great value for a quick snack, too.
TAPS is the only venue in Australia where you can pour your own beer. They are on Brisbane Road and their food is also great. The chefs can recommend the right brew to go with your food order.
Lot 104 is legendary for it’s coffee and more recently the food and live entertainment.
Lemon and thyme is a new (late October 2014) eatery just 100m from Northwind. With an emphasis on fresh food and using fresh herbs this restaurant and bar is open 7.30am for breakfast until dinner at night. The sweet potato and almond gnocchi is a real treat.
For those who prefer classic French cuisine, the place to go is Le Bistro Jardin on Brisbane Road. Steven’s cassoulet is tasty and his cakes are divine.
Cracked Pepper is known for it’s NZ cuisine. They are knowledgeable about special dietary requirements – gf and lactose intolerance are catered for and vegetarians have a wide choice on the menu.
One of Mooloolaba best kept secrets is the Thai Wharf Restaurant. Ton and Anin have been running this restaurant for about 10 years. Their green curry is delightful and their curry with cashew nuts is a favourite. They offer good value and the setting is stunning – just look out the window to see Whale One and other vessels tied up, watch water craft passing the wharf. This is a BYO with no corkage fee. They also off cooking classes with just one or two people. Their sticky rice pudding is a real treat for rice pudding lovers!