It’s only June but it already feels like Christmas. This might be in no small part because we are waking up to a pretty special present this morning. From today – Thursday June 22 – Westfield Chermside’s new food precinct will officially open to the public. The highly anticipated foodie mecca takes the shape of a weaving promenade, situated in a revitalised corner of the centre between Gympie Road and Banfield Street. The precinct is centred around The Urchin, a stylishly illuminated dome that offers shelter for diners and shoppers, with a host of restaurants and boutiques on either side vying for your attention.
The first wave of eateries to open up their doors this week includes a who’s who of anticipated new arrivals to Brisbane. One joint that’s got us fidgeting with excitement is Betty’s Burgers and Concrete Co. – a beloved Sunshine Coast institution that is finally bringing its brand of mouth-watering burgers, French fries, thickshakes and creamy custard ice-cream to Brisbane with its first location at Westfield Chermside. Joining Betty’s is popular Gold Coast venue Fiery Deli, which will also begin hawking its menu of Venezuelan cuisine today, including its signature takes on arepas, empanadas, nachos and tacos. Daniel Ridgeway will be bringing another Gold Coast-born concept to the north side, with BiN 931 – a unique eatery and bar concept – serving up the likes of kingfish sashimi, sticky pork belly, braised beef cheek over gnocchi, fried jamon and mozzarella balls, and much more. Fresh from Singapore, 4Fingers Crispy Chicken is setting down to roost at Westfield Chermside as well, offering free-range chicken, kimchi coleslaw and a range of Asian-inspired eats to gorge on.
Joining these esteemed chow houses is Tapworks Bar & Grill – the largest craft beer bar in Brisbane’s north. If beer flights, maple mustard chicken wings, chorizo hot dogs, triple-stack steak sandwiches, and cheese boards sound like a good time, make sure you pencil in a stop here. A few familiar faces are getting in on the fun as well, with Motto Motto, Zeus Street Greek, Coco Bliss, Kamikaze Teppanyaki and NYC Bagel Deli opening up locations, while the Olé group is bringing its signature style of Spanish tapas to the area with new locale Hermosa. The team behind Kinn Thai at Garden City is contributing some exemplary Thai food to Chermside with Kinn + Derm, a vibrantly colourful two-level restaurant that is instantly recognisable.
The fun doesn’t stop there! Once you’ve had your fill of the eateries, set your sights on The Hub – a laneway dedicated to showcasing pop-up retailers and boutique food and drink outlets. Upon launch, The Hub will be home to the likes of confectionary house Carcamo Candy Apples, vintage clothing boutique Arkive Vintage, women’s accessories store Kyra + Kenja, beauty and cosmetic care retailer Bubble + Pop, homewares and gift shop Milk Bar Candle Co., fashion outlet Side Street Boutique, Mexican homewares and embroidery fashion spot Alma Mexicana, and specialty coffee and toastie bar Archer Specialty Coffee. Sitting above the hubbub is TotalFusion – a fitness studio like no other. TotalFusion is a barefoot movement studio that offers more than 100 classes across five hot, warm and cold studios. Think barefoot bootcamp, cycle, barre, aerial yoga, battle ropes, boxing and more.
The opening weekend will see the whole centre come alive, with live entertainment tonight and heaps of retailer specials across Saturday and Sunday. Young Franco will be turning it up from 6:00 pm, coinciding with The Urchin turning its lights on for the first time. On Saturday, visitors will be able to score free coffee all day at Archer Specialty Coffee, free pitas from Zeus Street Greek between 12:00–3:00 pm, and can boogie the evening away a salsa night party at Fiery Deli from 8:00 pm.