Brisbane restaurateur Nick Pinn (Malt Dining, Drum, Vaquero Dining) has teamed up with Sridhar Penumechu (Saffron Restaurant) and Manjunath Mural – best known for leading Singapore’s Song of India to consecutive Michelin stars in 2016 and 2017 – to open Heritij, bringing elevated Indian cuisine to Brisbane Quarter.
The massive 788-square-metre venue is split across a bar, dining room, outdoor terraces and private function rooms. Design company Curious Us has created a space of whimsical opulence with coloured velvet, brocade wallpaper and moody lighting. The first-floor venue has impressive views over the river towards South Bank.
The name Heritij fits the concept of the venue – a reimagined Indian diner that balances the contemporary and traditional.
Manjunath Mural hopes to elevate local thinking about Indian food beyond simple curries to engage with a more thoughtful, experiential offering. “[I want to] prove that Indian food can be something new,” he says.
The Heritij menu is full of intriguing renditions, fusions of Asian cuisine and, notably, plenty of native-Australian ingredients including saltbush, rosella and Kakadu plum. Despite the convergence, though, the food is undeniably Indian.
“You can see my food has a lot of Asian influences,” Mural says of his menu, “But I’m absolutely not compromising with the spices, with the flavours and the aromas.”
Mains include slow-cooked lamb that is flambéed on serving, and sambal barramundi served with charred silverbeet and masala caviar. At the bar, guests can order from a smaller street-style menu; a masala fondue comes with a selection of meats from the tandoor oven. Papdi chaat (often called “Indian nachos” by Western diners) comes with tofu, pineapple, avocado and cumin yoghurt.
The wine list features about 20 by the glass with a good portion of them low-intervention. “We’re focusing on a fairly eclectic mix catered to coping with the full flavours and spice of Indian cuisine,” Nick Pinn says.
Otherwise, there’s a cocktail list that incorporates Indian flavours (try a Saffron Side, Heritij’s take on a Southside, made with gin, mint, house-made saffron syrup and lemon juice) and a full range of American whiskey.
Brisbane Quarter, 300 George Street, Brisbane
07 3211 0330
Tues to Sat 11.30am–11.45pm