Matt Moran is back, once again teaming up with Solotel to open Little Big House. It’s the third Brisbane venue the celebrity chef has launched with the hospitality group, after ARIA and Riverbar & Kitchen.
The pub sits high on Grey Street inside South Bank’s new Southpoint precinct, which already hosts Burger Project and Pourboy Southpoint. It’s the latest incarnation of the heritage-listed Collins Place, which since 1889 has been, among other things, a residence, a police station and a spaghetti restaurant.
“It was this really unique opportunity to find a structure like this and create something new inside it,” says Solotel group marketing director Dan Lacaze. “A lot of times with bars they’re hidden somewhere, or they’re in another building. I think there’s something really special about a free-standing venue that gives it a character and a feel that you just can’t get otherwise.”
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With a tin roof and big wraparound veranda, Little Big House feels just like your mate’s place, but with plenty of open seating and little nooks you can disappear into. It’s the perfect spot to drink a cold beer on a December afternoon, or watch a summer storm roll in from.
Drinks are designed with Queensland in mind. Cocktails come in cans, there are a frosè slushies and a range of spiked punches to share. The team collaborated with Young Henrys to create The Queenslander, an easy-drinking 4.2 per cent kolsch, which will be on tap exclusively at Little Big House for a limited time.
For food, Little Big House is putting on rotisserie chook with a selection of straightforward sides. Elsewhere, a pub is not a pub without a chicken parmi, but the kitchen flips the script by presenting it in spring roll form alongside a bunch of other “Little Feeds” (broad bean falafels, kingfish and avocado tostadas). A kiosk offers takeaway options including breakfast in the morning with coffee from Single O.
Emma Ross Design and H&E Architects collaborated on the interiors, which are guided by the building itself with their mix of old and new. Original touches like the latticed verandas and the big internal staircase have been left as is, but elsewhere op-shop paintings are overlaid with colourful graphics. A tropical theme runs throughout, giving everything a modern, consciously kitsch feel.
The venue is set up for house parties with DJs on both levels, a hot-pink pool table and a karaoke room downstairs.