Savour the tastes of summer at Brisbane’s own city beach.

As the warm summer weather heralds the arrival of the school holidays, the smell of sunscreen and trips to the beach, we can make the most of the wonderful bounty of summer flavours such as juicy watermelon and barbecued prawns. Summer brings a wonderful variety of fresh fruits, delicious salads and fresh succulent seafood – and there is nothing better than sharing a casual meal with family and friends.

The South Bank Surf Club is located on an artificial beach in the middle of the city but the food is fresh with an emphasis on seafood and there is plenty of traditional surf club fare to choose from.

We shared an entrée of Salt and Pepper Calamari ($16.50) – hot, tender and tasty – perhaps a little salty but then it’s supposed to be! The Drunken Chilli Mussels ($32) were generous, steamed in a spicy tomato and chilli broth, served with sourdough bread. The Black Pepper Tiger Prawns ($32) were also generous and perfectly cooked, served on a tender risotto-style bed of rice. The teenagers had the Steak Sandwich ($19.50) – tender steak served with an onion confit and bearnaise sauce on bread with chips – and the Fish and Chips ($26.50) – two freshly battered fillets served with chips – both well presented and satisfying.

The meals were all well cooked, well presented and flavoursome. But they are a tad expensive for a “surf club” and extras such as bread ($5), chips ($6) and salad ($10.50) quickly add up. The atmosphere is “surf club”, on an open deck – casual with simple plastic tables and chairs, and paper napkins.
The service is friendly but lacks polish and it is hard to get attention at times.

The wine list is reasonable with some good wines by the glass and a wide variety of beers. The adjacent bar serves a cut down version of the main menu and is a great spot to catch up for a beer – but can be quite noisy.

Whilst it lacks ocean views, waves and the ozone smell of the surf, the South Bank Surf Club has a good “surf-club” atmosphere (thankfully without the poker machines!) with a great location overlooking the parklands beach, river and city, serving high quality surf club-style food – but the food prices are more upmarket. For the price, one would expect better service and tablecloths. Regardless, this is a great place to take the family on a hot summer’s afternoon.