The Best Bars in Brisbane City

Updated 1 day ago

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Most people instantly think of Fortitude Valley when it comes to a big night out in Brisbane. But really, most of our best bars are found in the 4000 postcode. And just like the Valley, most of them are within walking distance from each other. Swish cocktail bars lead the pack, but there’s a watering hole on this list for most moods – from good-time bars to riverside spots with killer views.

  • Queensland’s only heritage-listed pub has a refined charm.

  • A boundary-pushing cocktail bar from the team behind CBD laneway bar Death and Taxes. It takes service to a whole new level, with roving Martini carts delivering expertly made seasonal drinks to luxurious leather booths.

  • Enjoy live music and free pretzels six nights a week at this laneway bar.

  • An elite bartending team is behind this approachable cocktail den, slinging an imaginative signature drinks list, Guinness on tap and housemade toasties. It’s all housed behind a heritage brick-and-timber facade in the city centre.

  • Coffee grotto by day, bar by night. In a city famous for neglecting its heritage, John Mills Himself is a glowing tribute to Brisbane’s past and present.

  • Behind a nondescript door down a graffiti-covered laneway, this homey underground bar is devoted to digestifs. Come for vintage Italian amaro, beeswax and lavender Negronis, and plenty of snacks to drink them with.

  • This hotel bar hits new rooftop heights.

  • A slick, understated laneway boozer and pintxos joint from a former Masterchef star.

  • The octagonal, overwater stunner with a fresh-seafood slant and an enviable view.

  • Cocktails and dim sum in an old, underground bank vault.

  • Fans of dapper cocktail bar Death & Taxes should make a beeline for this Brisbane city spot. Inspired by the hole-in-the-wall bars of New York and Italy, it's where you can slink into a leather booth with a well-made cocktail and escape the everyday.

  • Alice is a rocker’s reverie. There are ’80s TVs, a lucky-dip machine, and a jukebox playing hair metal hits – and it’s open til 3am every night.