Imagine a chef’s table, but without the surrounding restaurant. That’s Joy: Sarah and Tim Scott’s new 10-seat omakase-inspired restaurant in Fortitude Valley.

Describing Joy is easy. It’s simply a kitchen with a comptoir attached. There’s a compressed-stone counter; an enormous, eye-popping mural on the back wall; and a whole lot of stainless steel. The Scotts designed Joy, and you can tell – the galley-style kitchen has acres of space for them to manoeuvre around each other, covering everything from the cooking to the plating to the pouring of wine and then the washing up.

There’s another reason for making this a two-hander. Joy is designed to be an intimate experience but also to address the overheads that have put the squeeze on high-end diners in Brisbane. Without any managers or waiters or sommeliers or commissioned chefs to worry about, they cut down on costs while not cutting into the experience.

Joy’s menu leans on the Scotts’ accumulated experience working at some of Australia’s best restaurants, including Urbane, Gerard’s Bistro, Sepia and Sixpenny. There’s seared scallops with corn milk, sour pumpkin and kaffir lime; and fermented celeriac with venison tartare, roasted sesame and garlic.

For wines, award-winning sommelier Russ Berry has helped put together a list that leans towards low-intervention whites, the better to accompany the Scotts’ lighter style of cooking. A Brash Higgins 2018 cinsault washes down white fish with roasted bones and brassica, while a Heathcote Ephemera negroamaro blanc de noirs is matched to chicken fat cabbage and chicken skin served with pickles.

Joy Restaurant Shop 7 Bakery Lane, 694 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley No phone

Updated: January 15th, 2020

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