Yelp, an online review site, just released its annual list of the Top 100 Places To Eat — and believe it or not, Queensland only had five venues make the list.
Based on the highest user review ratings for restaurants across the country, the list includes venues from all states except Tasmania and Northern Territory. For foodies in Brisbane, there were only four places that placed in the Top 100. For a city that is bursting with top quality establishments and a consistently evolving food scene, this is very surprising, to say the least.
The Top 100 showed that Aussies are choosing quality fast food, cafe fare and high grade coffee rather than fine dining and fancy establishments with the top four venues being a Malaysian canteen (Mamak), a coffee shop that also serves up donuts (Patricia), a bakery (Bourke Street Bakery) and a fish and chippery (Fishmongers Manly).
We spoke to Lani Paul, Yelp’s Senior Community Manager in Brisbane, to discuss her thoughts on the Top 100 and whether or not it’s really an accurate representation of the quality of Queensland’s cafes, restaurants and bars.
Why do you think only four places made it in for Brisbane (five for QLD)?
Yelp’s data is strongest in our oldest communities, which is why you see many other businesses represented. As we continue to grow and the depth of our data increases, we’re excited to see what great local businesses Brisbane Yelpers discover and share across the nation and the world.
How was the voting conducted?
To determine Yelp’s top places to eat in 2015, our data science team analysed which places were the most popular and well reviewed over the course of 2014. Yelp’s data science team gave more weight to recent reviews, so that Yelpers’ opinions in 2014 mattered most, while older reviews had less influence on the list. This leaves us with a list that has a combination of classic favorites which were still hot in 2014 and new up-and-comers that garnered lots of positive attention. Businesses were compared on a nationwide basis.
Were there less reviewers in Brisbane?
We don’t break numbers out by individual cities, but Yelp had an average of 139 million monthly unique visitors in Q3 2014.
Do you think this means that Brisbane is less food-focused and less inclined to review online about where to eat?
Not at all! I think Brisbane is food-focused and there are lots of exciting things happening in the food world here. I think people on Yelp are motivated to contribute reviews because we’re an active community and more and more people are finding out how to use Yelp to discover local businesses in Brisbane and share their discoveries with others.
What are some places that you think should have made the list?
These are the places that were the most popular and well reviewed by Yelpers in 2014 so it’s their cumulative opinions. But there are plenty of places that I think would have been great to make the list. There’s places like Gerard’s, E’cco, Tartufo and Public, and other long standing establishments that I think people forget about as we are constantly shown and led towards the new openings in Brisbane. There’s some old favourites that are just as good now and need to be remembered!
Were you surprised by the inclusions from Brisbane?
This list represents the opinions of the Yelp community, most of whom are spending more time at places like this rather than the super fine dining establishments. That’s why I wasn’t surprised by the Brisbane inclusions. Bunker, Scout, Strauss and John Mills Himself are all local businesses I enjoy visiting and I know they’re equally enjoyed by Yelpers. There’s one Yelper who changed her route to work so that she could visit Bunker each morning for her morning coffee! And if anyone has seen the lines out of Scout on a weekend or public holiday, it’s no surprise that it’s included in a most popular list. I think it’s also interesting to see that Brisbane’s love-affair with coffee is deepening.
What do you think of the food/ drink scene in QLD comparatively to other states?
I used to say that Brisbane was getting to the point where our training wheels were being taken off and I think that’s true. Brisbane is a city where, for the food/ drink scene, it’s still small enough to take a chance and try something out. That said, I do feel like we grab onto a trend and run with it. I’m always eager to hear of places opening up that are doing something out of the norm. But I also think it’s important to celebrate all of what’s happening in Brisbane — it’s not just the food/ drink scene that is thriving!
We’ve included the entire list of places in the Top 100 below. Have a read through and see how many you’ve visited. Congratulations to Brisbane venues John Mills Himself, Scout, Bunker and Strauss — if you haven’t popped by any of these, now you had even more incentive (other than the delicious food and tasty drinks).
Yelp’s Top 100 Places to Eat in Australia for 2015
1. Mamak, Haymarket, NSW
2. Patricia, Melbourne, VIC
3. Bourke Street Bakery, Sydney, NSW
4. Fishmongers Manly, Manly, NSW
5. E for Ethel, North Adelaide, SA
6. Chin Chin, Melbourne, VIC
7. Brother Baba Budan, Melbourne, VIC
8. The League of Honest Coffee, Melbourne, VIC
9. Toastface Grillah, Perth, WA
10. Adelaide Central Market, Adelaide, SA
11. Din Tai Fung, Sydney, NSW
12. Mrs. S, Maylands, WA
13. Bowery to Williamsburg, Melbourne, VIC
14. Single Origin Roasters, Surry Hills, NSW
15. The Old Crow, Perth, WA
16. Cumulus, Melbourne, VIC
17. Proud Mary, Collingwood, VIC
18. John Mills Himself, Brisbane, QLD
19. La Tortilleria, Kensington, VIC
20. MoVida Bar de Tapas, Melbourne, VIC
21. Mr Wong, Sydney, NSW
22. Varsity Bar, Crawley, WA
23. Tuck Shop, Perth, WA
24. The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel, The Rocks, NSW
25. Via Napoli, Lane Cove, NSW
26. Seven Seeds, Carlton, VIC
27. Bivouac, Northbridge, WA
28. Rockpool Bar and Grill, Sydney, NSW
29. Run Amuk Hotdogs Unleashed, South Fremantle, WA
30. Harry’s Café de Wheels, Woolloomooloo, NSW
31. Clever Little Tailor, Adelaide, SA
32. The Hardware Societe, Melbourne, VIC
33. La Veen Coffee & Kitchen, Perth, WA
34. Miss Jackson, St Kilda, VIC
35. Monk Bodhi Dharma, Balaclava, VIC
36. Top Paddock, Richmond, VIC
37. Scout, Brisbane, QLD
38. Grind It, Glenelg, SA
39. The Raw Kitchen, Fremantle, WA
40. Exchange Specialty Coffee, Adelaide, SA
41. Sydney Fish Market, Pyrmont, NSW
42. Bunker, Milton, QLD
43. Izakaya Den, Melbourne, VIC
44. Aisuru Sushi, Perth, WA
45. The Grounds of Alexandria, Alexandria, NSW
46. Three Bags Full, Abbotsford, VIC
47. Low Key Chow House, Leederville, WA
48. St Ali, South Melbourne, VIC
49. Sydney Madang, Sydney, NSW
50. Strauss FD, Brisbane, QLD
51. Hell of the North, Fitzroy, VIC
52. Etica Ethical Pizzeria & Mozzarella Bar, Adelaide, SA
53. Naked For Satan, Fitzroy, VIC
54. El Jannah, Granville, NSW
55. Brewtown Newtown, Newtown, NSW
56. The Pantry on Egmont, Hawthorn, SA
57. Harvest Espresso, Victoria Park, WA
58. Gumshara Ramen, Sydney, NSW
59. Home Thai, Sydney, NSW
60. Mary’s, Newtown, NSW
61. Le Monde Cafe, Surry Hills, NSW
62. Quay, The Rocks, NSW
63. Huxtaburger II, Melbourne, VIC
64. Coffee Branch, Adelaide, SA
65. Nobu, WA
66. Trio Cafe, Bondi Beach, NSW
67. Everyday Coffee, Collingwood, VIC
68. Circa Espresso, Parramatta, NSW
69. Mamachau, Adelaide, SA
70. Bar Lafayette, Perth, WA
71. Two Birds One Stone, South Yarra, VIC
72. Lazybones Lounge, Marrickville, NSW
73. The Vegie Bar, Fitzroy, VIC
74. Vue De Monde, Melbourne, VIC
75. Tetsuya’s Restaurant, Sydney, NSW
76. Enrique’s School For To Bullfighting, Perth, WA
77. Market Lane Coffee, South Yarra, VIC
78. Clarences, Mt Lawley, WA
79. Paddy’s Lantern, Adelaide, SA
80. Nieuw Amsterdam, Melbourne, VIC
81. Menya Japan Noodle Bar City, Sydney, NSW
82. Mama Tran, Perth, WA
83. Coda, Melbourne, VIC
84. Mr Crackles, Darlinghurst, NSW
85. Hey Jupiter, Adelaide, SA
86. The Attic, Fremantle, WA
87. The Premises, Kensington, VIC
88. 8bit, Footscray, VIC
89. Mamak, Melbourne, VIC
90. Pendolino, Sydney, NSW
91. Caffiend, Cairns, QLD
92. Porteno, Surry Hills, NSW
93. Peel Street, Adelaide, SA
94. Three Williams, Sydney, NSW
95. Buffalo Dining Club, Darlinghurst, NSW
96. 400 Gradi, Brunswick, VIC
97. Captain Melville, Melbourne, VIC
98. Campos Coffee, Newtown, NSW
99. Mary Street Bakery, Highgate, WA
100.Guzman Y Gomez Mexican Taqueria, Northbridge, WA
What do you think of the results? What places in Brisbane would you like to see make the list next year? Let us know in the comments below…