Hangovers are the pits. You’re tired, your head throbs and your mouth feels as dry as a desert. Sometimes the last thing you want to do is eat. But then again, the right meal (and the right drink) can bring you back to life the morning (or afternoon) after the night before.
Broadsheet has asked some of Brisbane’s top chefs and restaurateurs where they like to go when they’re feeling dusty, and what dish can turn their day around.
Sebastiaan de Kort, Nota and Allonda
Chef Sebastiaan de Kort is a big believer in going for a walk when you’re hungover, and dropping into your local. Living in West End, de Kort likes to stroll to spots like La Lupa for one of their Roman-style pizza specials, or West Side Burger for a classic beef burger.
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“I love La Lupa, so I’ll walk down there, have a pizza and Negroni, and roll out of there,” he says. “The burgers at West Side Burger are epic. It’s one of the nicest burgers I’ve had in a long time.”
Bonnie Shearston, Ruby, My Dear and Red Hook
When it comes to a hangover feed, Shearston is the opposite of most. Instead of the usual heavy, greasy, carb-loaded meal, she likes to go for sashimi and anything pickled. She won’t touch a coffee, either.
“If I have the energy to head out, I’ll go to a low-key sushi spot such as Ginga or Hikari,” she says. “[I’ll] fill up on delicious sashimi, a cup of salty miso soup, some pickled ginger and a big, cold Sapporo.
“If leaving the house is not an option, it’s jars of gherkins or herring rollmops, and gallons of sparkling water. Then normally when I start to feel a little better, I’ll order in ramen from Taro’s Ramen or Ramen Danbo and a couple of Stone & Wood pacific ales.”
Phil Marchant, Essa and The Nixon Room
Phil Marchant isn’t hungover much these days. Running one of Brisbane’s best restaurants while looking after a young family, Marchant has a lot on his plate. But if he’s been kept up during the night by his kids, or he’s up early in the morning, he heads to Sprout Artisan Bakery.
“I'm grabbing a large batch-brew and as many pastries as I dare [to] order without causing funny looks,” he says. “Without fail though, I’m taking two cardamom scrolls, probably an almond croissant and a special pastry of the day.”
Bailee Dewes, La Lune Wine Co
When Dewes is hungover she heads to Antep Chargrill and Kebab in West End for the lamb special, which she says usually takes around 15 minutes to prepare, because it’s lovingly chargrilled out the back.
“[You get] chunks of lamb, pickled condiments and a red cabbage slaw that is next-level,” she says. “I know it’s just a kebab, but it’s like no other kebab I’ve ever had before, and it always fixes me right up.”
Ben McShane, Clarence and Corner Deli
These days, chef Ben McShane admits he doesn’t have too many hangovers. But as a young chef in London he had his fair share of big nights. McShane would hit up the famous St John Restaurant for a plate of blood cake (blood pudding) with a fried egg and brown sauce.
“We do a version of this in a roll at the deli, so that’s probably the best remedy at my disposal,” he says. “Outside of [that], Broken Hearts Burger Club does a pretty good job.”
Louis Tikaram, Stanley
Even though Louis Tikaram is around Chinese food most days of the week as head chef at Stanley Restaurant, he heads to suburban Chinese institution, Billy’s Pine Bamboo Restaurant, for his hangover meal.
“Chinese food is the ultimate hangover cure,” he says. “[There are dishes like] Peking duck carved tableside, shredded beef, picnic chicken, steamed scallops in garlic sauce, special imperial cold-cuts and sizzling Mongolian lamb. Come on, if a hangover survives then it deserves to stay. Wash [it] down with a few ice-cold Tsingtaos and you will be good to go for round two.”
Will Cowper, Otto
Like Tikaram, Will Cowper thinks the best thing for a hangover is Chinese food. In fact, Cowper is hitting up Tikaram at Stanley for a meal when he’s feeling sorry the next day.
“Nothing supports a hangover more than another drink, and some dumplings from Stanley,” Cowper says. “Louis [Tikaram] can always fix me with one (or two) of their signature steamed dim sum platters.”