No couple is always in synch. Every duo – friends, lovers, siblings, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen – sometimes has to do an activity that favours one. You like pillow embroidery, they like non-competitive table-top gaming. They’re into lavish tropical hotels, active gear and rare Italian sausages, you’re more a line-dancing, esoteric beers and truffle-dust type. But despite your differences you still dig hanging out. So, where to go? Here’s our guide to six date spots that suit the attraction of opposites.
You’re into excellent vegan food, they love meat and gaming
Since opening on Brunswick Street earlier this year, Netherworld has been an instant hit. And it’s not just the 25 arcade machines, 15 pinball machines, classic consoles and 100-plus board games drawing crowds – they’re also serving the best diner-style vegan food in town.
If one of you has been hanging out for a vegan-friendly destination with more than one thing on the menu, Netherworld’s plant-based options are never an afterthought. They’re the stars of the comfort-food-heavy menu of burgers, bowls and bar snacks. Your omnivore gaming buddy can even add meat as extra – once they’ve finally given up beating that Space Invaders high score.
You like contemporary art, they’re more into comic books
While QAGOMA has long been the go-to date spot for contemporary art lovers in Brisbane, its newest exhibition also caters to those who like a little more action-fantasy in their art.
Marvel: Creating the Cinematic Universe is an exploration of everything that goes on both in front of and behind the camera to create those comic book blockbusters. Meaning while you wander through the gallery’s impressive collection of Asia Pacific and Indigenous Australian art in the free permanent exhibitions, they can check out the props, costumes, concept art and original comics in the Marvel section. Meet up afterwards at the free cinematheque showing expertly curated popular and arthouse films.
You’re after a sophisticated cocktail, they’re craving casual street food
The introvert in the relationship is pining to find a quiet nook to sip slowly on an expertly mixed Negroni. The other is keen for a casual outdoor and social feed. It’s rare to find a spot that offers both options, but Fish Lane in South Brisbane is arranged for just such a thing. It’s where Vietnamese street food restaurant Hello Please sits directly opposite intimate cocktail spot Maker.
If you know exactly how you like your drink, and all your partner needs is food packed with flavour served in a venue with a little hustle and bustle, Fish Lane is the destination. It’s also handy for role-playing as strangers – you can make eyes at each other across the way.
They love country music, you’re more a romantic sea dog
You’re little bit country, they’re a little bit … not. That’s no problem at Lefty's Old Time Music Hall, the ex-gentlemen’s club now popular atmospheric bar and music venue.
Downstairs at the Caxton Street venue it’s all leather and beer, dark wood and dance floor. A different live country band plays every night, usually to a packed crowd. But upstairs at the smaller, more intimate Mermaid Lounge it’s a different world.
After the pair of you scoot boots downstairs, tune into the kitschy maritime vibe upstairs with one of the rum-based cocktails. After the downstairs revelry, it’s the perfect spot for sinking into a comfy booth and letting the outside world drift away a little.
You love trying new foods, they love trying to cook it
This style of couple is a perfect pairing at home, with one’s experimenting in the kitchen needing an eager mouth for real-time testing. But what about on a date?
Wandering Cooks in Fish Lane has the goods to satisfy both passions, bringing together new sustainable food producers, chefs and experts to teach home cooks new tricks. Whether it’s cheesemaking, butchery, talks from cookbook authors or tours of the commercial kitchen, your more practical half can get their hands dirty while you enjoy the never-ending range of different chefs and tasty artisan products that roll out of their kitchen.
The bar also serves a long list of emerging Australian wines and craft beer and cider, so you can debrief over a glass of something afterwards.
You love modern Italian food, they love performance art
When you finally get out of the house you want a dining experience worth putting on pants for, while they want to see a show and soak up some culture. The Brisbane Powerhouse has both needs covered.
The huge heritage-listed factory building in New Farm hosts regular comedy, music and theatre events, while in the same building Bar Alto serves refined Italian food. Share some grilled quail saltimbocca, scallop and saffron risotto, and a bottle from its small, concentrated wine list before heading off with a full belly to one of the many free and ticketed events and exhibitions.
This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with The Big Sick, a new comedy from Roadshow Films. Produced by Judd Apatow and starring Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan, Holly Hunter and Ray Ramano, The Big Sick is a whip-smart love story about an unlikely couple plunging into a new relationship. View session times near you.