No longer just a bad-ass Clint Eastwood line, Fortitude Valley’s sharp newcomer Whistle Dixie is the brainchild of accomplished hospitality figure Gerry Moley (Foxy Bean) and father-son duo Mick and Ben McLoughlin. After looking for opportunities to implement a new concept in Brisbane, the trio were offered the lobby space of Ann Street’s Aurizon building. The tucked-away tenancy afforded the group the opportunity to spill into the laneway running between the building and the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, adding a new dimension to Whistle Dixie’s potential as a hybrid venue. The eatery’s plush interior offers conventional and booth seating, with a distinctive blue and gold palette imbued with decorative touches inspired by the age of the railroad. During the day, Whistle Dixie acts as a sunny cafe space, with extra seating in the lobby bolstering the interior and shady laneway capacity. When the sun sets, Whistle Dixie’s sheer curtains help isolate the venue from the lobby, creating an intimate atmosphere for drinks and dinner.
Head chef Joel Lewty has been given the task of conducting the food proceedings with a modern Australian focus. The morning fare encompasses classic breakfast choices (grilled haloumi fritters, anyone?) as well as grab-and-go options for time-poor commuters, before moving on to a lunch service of burgers, sticky beef ribs, chicken parmigiana and more. At night the venue shifts into a chic nighttime haunt, delivering platters and share boards loaded up with charcuterie, pork belly and arancini. Pizza and pasta offer a heartier dinner option alongside light mains. The bar is well stocked, with a dozen beers on tap (including a house beer brewed by Ballistic Beer Co.), an Australian-heavy wine list, top-shelf whiskies and signature cocktails.
Whistle Dixie is open now. For more information, check out Whistle Dixie’s entry in the Stumble Guide.