Where to find sustainable eats

REduce waste

Looking for some eats that won’t cost the earth? Whether you’re after a simple snack or something more Alacarte, Hannah Klose has found some sustainably sourced, environmentally friendly options in Brisbane to fill your stomach and lighten your footprint. 

Research shows that Australians waste 7.6 million tonnes of food each year, 70% of which is perfectly edible. 

With the growing understanding around food wastage, many are searching for more sustainable alternatives for eating out. 

From cooking what’s in season and sourcing local produce to closed loop composting and minimising waste, meet the Brisbane restaurants, bars and markets who want to feed you well. 

A restaurant with the word sunshine on the wall
Sunshine Eatery on James Street

Sunshine Eatery delivers an all-vegetarian Mediterranean diet, reducing the environmental strain of meat production. Their produce is sourced from local suppliers where possible, and they divert their food waste to be commercially composted. 

Their packaging has also been selected with sustainability in mind. Plastic items are made from plants rather than oil, and each item is either recyclable, home compostable, commercially compostable or a combination of each. 

And if you want to eat a little or a lot you can get the exact amount your heart desires as all food is ordered and priced per 100g, like a deli, meaning nothing goes to waste. 

An aerial shot of Fiume
Crystalbrook Vincent, Howard Smith Wharves

The only calories you need to count at Crystalbrook Vincent’s restaurants and bars are Climate Calories! Their menus at Fiume and Mews are labelled with icons alongside each dish, so you’ll be able to see how your meal was made and the impact it will have on the environment. 

Their commitment to locally sourced produce (within three hours of Brisbane), minimised waste, ethical meats, eco-friendly packaging and using culturally considered native ingredients in partnership with indigenous communities, means Crystalbrook Vincent don’t have any ‘guilty pleasures’ on their menu, just pleasures!  

Fiume's menu
Minimise your meal’s impact using their climate calorie menu as a guide.
Northey Street Organic Farmers Market, Windsor 
A breakfast wrap

If you haven’t been to Brisbane’s only organic farmers’ market, you need to make a beeline for this inner-city farm in Windsor. Open every Sunday from 6-11am, the market dishes out delicious brunches, freshly baked breads, pastries and donuts as well as certified organic fresh local produce, so you can stock up for the week ahead while supporting local organic farmers and small ethical businesses.  

Grown, West End
A pink bowl full of fruit and yoghurt

Grown literally lives up to its name with its focus on providing a local plant-based and seasonal menu using produce grown by several local farmers and producers, including FoodConnect, who source from farmers within 400 kilometres of Brisbane.  

They work with ethical and transparent suppliers to ensure that their menu supports sustainable and fair food systems, including Loop Growers, a farm in Samford who operate a ‘closed loop’ compost system; Suncoast Fresh, who supply seasonal produce from the Sunshine Coast; and Little Acre Mushrooms, who supply all their oyster mushrooms.  

The restaurant also focuses on minimising package by making as much of the menu in-house as possible, as well as keeping their coffee packaging plastic-free where possible and sourcing from local roasters.  

Their food waste is converted to compost via the Loop Growers ‘closed loop’ system and is then used to grow fresh produce.  

Bulimba Bowlo, Balmoral

Over the last few years, Bulimba Bowlo has become a bustling community hub. With a lively bar and dining area as well as a popular barefoot bowls option for friends and family, it’s the perfect place to have a casual barbeque and unwind on a Sunday afternoon.

With help from the Resilient Clubs Support Program, Bulimba Bowlo are determined to minimise their environmental impact by reducing their energy and water consumption wherever possible. This includes installing a solar PV system, bar tap timers, energy monitoring systems, wireless rain sensors attached to their smart sprinklers, and much more.

From the outside, Bulimba Bowlo looks like a welcoming, humble bowls club, but inside they are equipped with the technology and behaviour changes to be a leader in sustainable operations. In fact, by making these clever changes and smart investments, Bulimba Bowlo will be reducing their energy-related carbon emissions by approximately 26.2 metric tonnes annually. That’s about the same amount of carbon emissions emitted by driving from Brisbane to Perth 24 times!

Three Blue Ducks, Brisbane City 
Plates of food on a table

If you’re looking for a more sustainable approach to dining out, try Three Blue Ducks at W Brisbane in the city. 

Started by three surfers who wanted to cook food that is both delicious and ethical, the restaurant was founded on the values of ‘growing what you can, buying food mindfully, buying it locally, cooking it thoughtfully and wasting nothing where you can.’ 

They source from local suppliers including Falls Farm, a family-run regenerative agriculture farm on the Sunshine Coast, which has a chemical-free approach, producing nutrient-rich food while improving soil health. 

The author

Hannah Turner

Hannah works at Brisbane Sustainability Agency in the marketing team delivering sustainable events to help create a clean and green city. When she’s not in the office you’ll most likely find her thrifting at an op shop in Brisbane somewhere!

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