Noosa, on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, is a paradise for foodies, with fresh, local produce, award-winning eateries and some seriously stunning scenery. The Noosa Eat & Drink Festival is one of the annual highlights of the region, bringing chefs, producers and diners together each May. Festival director and local foodie Sheridah Puttick gives us her pick of the best spots to brunch in this beautiful beachside resort town – after all, there’s no better way to start the day than with brunch by the beach.
“Noosa has long been known as one of Australia’s best coastal dining destinations,” says Sheridah Puttick, local foodie and festival director of the Noosa Eat & Drink Festival, an annual event held in the beachside town over five days each May.
A delicious highlight of the year, Noosa Eat & Drink brings together some of Australia’s best chefs, wine, drink and food producers and foodies. Noosa Main Beach is transformed into a spectacular dining destination and a Festival Village is created alongside Noosa River, with a host of exciting food experiences – from beachside breakfasts and special events with celebrity chefs, to hinterland food trails and master classes. Many of the region’s award-winning restaurants also take part.
It’s not the only time of year that good food can be found in Noosa. “There’s an abundance of fresh, local produce, passionate chefs and stunning restaurant locations in Noosa,” says Puttick. “All this comes together to offer incredible, award-winning restaurants, cafés, boutique breweries and distilleries.”
Brunch is one of the best ways to get a taste of everything Noosa has to offer – and is the perfect time of day to enjoy the year-round sunshine. But, with so many delectable spots to choose from, it can be tricky to know where to start. These are some of Sheridah Puttick’s favourite spots for brunch in and around Noosa.
Located in Noosaville, this deli-market has one of the biggest selections of local, all-organic goodies on the Sunshine Coast, with seriously cool urban warehouse vibes that make for a nice change of scenery. It also has all the ingredients for an excellent brunch – Clandestino Roasters Coffee, Tanglewood Bakery and VanillaFood. “These three producers are the perfect combo and every mouthful feels good for you,” says Puttick. “After brunch, enjoy browsing the permanent market space which specialises in everything organic, from Ayurvedic day spa Yukti Botanicals, to organic fruit and veg at BioShop and Eumundi Meats, one of Noosa’s best butchers.”
This open and airy beachside restaurant on Noosa Main Beach is something of an institution – with a well-deserved reputation to match. “Bistro C is the perfect place to start your day with dreamy ocean views,” says Puttick. “The menu has something for everyone. Their brunch Bloody Marys are somewhat famous and it’s a regular hot spot for celebrities visiting Noosa.” Chef Dayle Merlo’s breakfast menu runs the gamut from healthy options, like golden kombucha bircher with activated seeds, nuts and grains with kombucha turmeric and coconut yoghurt, to an indulgent spring onion and rice noodle omelette with pulled pork, Asian slaw and pineapple relish.
VanillaFood is all about embracing the healing power of food – and its brunch menu is not only good for your wellbeing, but also packs a tasty punch. “This organic café is the second VanillaFood in Noosa and the decor is simply stunning,” says Puttick of the light and bright beach-chic interiors that feature all natural timber, monochrome tiles and sleek white walls. “I think it’s one of the nicest places in Noosa, and its healthy food is sensational. The avocado on charcoal sourdough with turmeric cashew cream, hazelnuts and lemon is a favourite.” The menu changes with the seasons and produce is grown organically and sourced from local suppliers when possible. There’s also a range of sweet – and wholesome – desserts to indulge in.
Jungle & Co is the self-proclaimed “home of the healthy gut” – with a menu that’s designed to supply all the nutrients needed for guests to thrive. “The juices are all about looking after yourself and this is the perfect place for food medicine with an emphasis on gut health,” says Puttick. “I love the Black Power Smoothie with the antioxidant power of blueberries, creaminess of cashews and tahini and a hint of cinnamon – this could be the best smoothie ever!” There are also plant-based salads with ethical proteins, or the option to build your own, with a choice of salad, protein (including vegan options), plants, dressings and toppings.
There’s no better place for people-watching in Noosa than streetside at this 30-year-old café on Hastings Street. There’s also a bar and a terrace inspired by the Côte d’Azur. “Aromas is famous for its Parisian-style chairs and tables overlooking the famous Hastings Street,” says Puttick. “Its menu is seasonal with a twist, and much of the produce is grown on their own hinterland property, Maravista Farm.” For those eager to make it to the beach before the crowds, there’s a Quick Get Me to the Beach menu, with tasty bites that can be served up in a flash, or sit back and relax with a bacon and egg burger or a vegan bowl.
One of the oldest venues in Noosa, this Hastings Street café is a long-standing favourite. “Café Le Monde is a Noosa institution, and it’s been fuelling surfers since 1986,” says Puttick. “Its locally sourced cooloola prawn omelette with coconut lime and fermented chili dressing with coriander and ginger served with organic toast is the perfect brunch.” The paleo waffle with banana, clean caramel sauce, COYO coconut ice cream and local organic honeycomb is great for those on a low carb diet who still want to indulge. The café also serves up its own brand of coffee, locally roasted by award-winning Clandestino Roasters, and fresh bread and pastries from the local Tanglewood Bakery.
“This is a local hidden gem away from the crowds at Peregian Beach about 20 minutes from Noosa Heads,” says Puttick. “Skål Coffee has an easy-going surfside cool vibe and offers a healthy and delicious brunch. I love the chai, breakfast bowls and lemon tonic spritz.” The avocado on toast is another winner for brunch, featuring fresh avocado, zesty chickpeas, radish, spring onion, goats cheese and pistachio dukkah on sourdough or gluten-free nut and seed bread. After brunch, explore the beaches and lakes of chilled-out Peregian Beach, or check out the twice-monthly markets or Peregian Originals, an afternoon of live music held at the beachfront park on the second Sunday of each month.