Editor's note: on March 27 2019 Proud Mary changed its venue name to Mary Mae's. See Broadsheet's profile here.

After 11 years, the Trippas White Group has closed Watt at the Brisbane Powerhouse. In its place comes Proud Mary, a colourful venue dedicated to soul food and Bloody Marys.

“Brisbane is changing,” says Trippas White Group’s marketing manager Jacqui Stanton. “We wanted to change as well and offer something a little bit different.”

Before you ask: no, Proud Mary isn’t related to the iconic Melbourne coffee roaster, but it is named after the 1969 hit song by Creedence Clearwater Revival, which references New Orleans. The connection comes through in the menu, which taps into North American soul-food favourites such as buttermilk fried chicken, oyster po’ boy sliders and poutine. There are also larger dishes to share, such as DIY beef-brisket tortillas and a cold seafood platter.

“It’s not another American diner – we didn’t want to be that at all,” Stanton says. “It’s comfort food but it’s not too heavy.”

The transformation from Watt to Proud Mary took just two days, but the differences are noticeable. Stanton says it was all about “bringing the river inside”. There’s now a lot more greenery around the large space, umbrellas and soft furnishings. A large mural by local artists Frank & Mimi sits behind the bar.

The breakfast menu highlights chef Jennifer Motsch’s French heritage with dishes such as croque monsieur and smoked-salmon tartine. On the weekend, the menu expands to more elaborate options such as Motsch’s signature goat’s cheese tartine burger. The Queen Mary Long Brunch runs from 10.30am to 1.30pm on Saturdays and includes a $45 per person four-course set menu with the optional add-ons of bottomless Bloody Marys or bottomless bubbles. Coffee comes from Sydney’s Double Roasters.

The drinks menu features five different Bloody Marys, one of which mixes vodka, a secret Proud Mary mix and clamato juice (a combination of clam and tomato juice). There are also plenty of other cocktails, a bunch of taps with beer from local producers (Ballistic, Slipstream, Green Beacon) and a short, white-heavy wine list.

Editor's note: on March 27 2019 Proud Mary changed its venue name to Mary Mae's. See Broadsheet's profile here.

Proud Mary
Brisbane Powerhouse, 119 Lamington Street, New Farm
(07) 3358 5464

Mon to Fri 8.30am–late
Sat & Sun 8am–late


This article first appeared on Broadsheet on November 7, 2018. Menu items may have changed since publication.