Costa Taco is dishing up authentic Mexican eats.
Costa Taco is dishing up authentic Mexican eats.
Combining great-tasting food and sustainably sourced ingredients is a realm we should be looking to head if climate-related headlines are anything to go by. Two brothers who believe in this ethos are brothers Matt and Nick Stanley, who are the gents behind Palm Beach’s soon to open taco den — Costa Taco.
For those who do the rounds of farmers markets, you may recognise these two who also double as the proprietors of Cuzzie Pies. They’re ones to keep themselves busy and have been since holding regular taco pop-ups at Dust Temple’s Summer Series, Alfred’s Apartment and Bundall Farmers Markets; keeping finger-licking tacos coming to the masses right across the Coast.
With the increasing popularity and desire to find themselves a spot to call home, the guys landed themselves a humble yet fun space right on the Gold Coast Highway in Palm Beach. This is an honest-style Mexican taqueria where you’ll find no Oz-Mex cliches — only wholly authentic-tasting tacos, ice-cold beers, and a simple but rustic setting where banter and good vibes are guaranteed to gush.
From their time spent around farmers markets and talking with dedicated growers and producers, the two brothers became acutely aware of how our little corner of the world mirrors Mexico’s climate. With near-identical weather patterns and even soil types, they began to experiment with chillies and vegetables, fully appreciating how food from local farmers not only rewards you with quality produce but a much smaller carbon footprint. And before you know it, Costa Taco was born!
Everything you ingest at Costa Taco is sourced from our sun-drenched local area and is highly seasonal. But what else would you expect?
The guys are adamant about keeping their food offering small and delicious — no dishes acting as purely menu fillers here. You’ll have a straightforward choice of five tacos: Beef Birria, Pork Canitas, Guerrero Chicken, Baja Fish and Seasonal Veggie, which comes as your vegan choice. All of these delights come on pillowy corn-based tortillas — meaning zero gluten for you, compadre! Running alongside this will be an ever-changing and evolving sides and specials list with a handful of exciting and ‘of the moment’ dishes the guys are excited for you to try and share amongst friends.
In the space, there’s low seating for couples, and a stand-up bar for those who want to chat whilst they sip beers and munch tacos. You’ll also notice a fun and eye-catching part of the venue is a spice thermometer painted on one of the walls: handily indicating where specific chillies and peppers sit in the grand scheme of hotness. You’ll then have the option of customising your tacos to whatever level of heat your heart desires. Finally… you can now settle that argument over which sauce is the spiciest!
Authenticity is at the heart of Costa Tacos. While Palm Beach might not be a dusty cactus-filled town in Mexico, the local produce and dedication to flavour more than make up for this fact!
Hours: Opening 14 Saturday August 2021 then Tuesday-Sunday, 5pm-late
Where: 1136 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Words by Alex Mitcheson.
No, you’re not dreaming or hallucinating, International Margarita Day is a thing (although warning, too many margs or ritas may in fact result in dreaming and hallucinating). Friends, stick an annual reminder in your phone for 22nd of February which this year, falls on a Wednesday and whatta way to celebrate hump day #ArrebaAreeba!
As regular readers will know, we’re rather partial to a margarita or (twenty)two and *cough cough* feel a sick day coming in hot next Thursday…
Being self-declared connoisseurs of this Mexican fave, here’s a list of 17 local places you can enjoy a celebratory tipple this International Margarita Day. SALUD!
Palm Springs Burleigh
Palm Springs Burleigh is a Southern Californian inspired café, eats and drinks heaven on earth. With All.The.Things you’d expect from somewhere with Palm Springs in the name, you’ll find arches, cacti, Slim Aarons, plenty of green, mint and white hues and of course, M.A.R.G.I.S! A tried and tested Burleigh fave, extra points awarded for the get-in-my-belly-good nosh.
Our pick: Chilli Margarita – Chilli infused 1800 silver tequila, Cointreau & fresh lime juice.
Where: 1878 Gold Coast Hwy, Burleigh Heads
Nested in Sanctuary Cove, you’ll find this intimate quintessential modern Mexican cantina with a slight Caribbean influence and srsly, what more could one ask for?! Think terracotta, venetian walls, exposed concrete, Virgin Mary statues, and a cactus at every turn. The house tequila is made with wild agave and they only use organic, freshly squeezed lime in all their cocktails…including their cult worthy ritas. Gimme gimme!
Our pick: Watermelon Margarita
Where: Sanctuary Cove, 39 Masthead Way, Hope Island
One for the burbs! If you can’t be arsed driving to the more tradish margi-slinging spots, Mudgeeraba’s Panchos delivers the sweet and salty-rimmed goodness like a boss. With its bright flashes of searing yellow, pastel blue, warm pinks and hot reds, take a seat on the front deck, in the dining room for a feed, or on the large deck and garden out back which boasts its own bar #noice.
Our Pick: Their frozen margi’s – especially in this heat wave!
Where: 581 Gold Coast Springbrook Road, Mudgeeraba
El Camino Cantina
Die-hard fans of El Camino Cantina’s legendary Margaritas have a month to celebrate the Top 10 Ritas of 2023 when ten all-time great flavours hit the bar on Monday. Served Cadillac-style (cool) with a smooth, rich float of Grand Marnier, on the rocks or frozen, indulge in Watermelon & Chilli, Fruit Tingle, Lychee, Skittles, Mango, Sour Apple, Classic, Rita Colada, Strawberry and Marshmallow.
Our pick: Rita Colada
Where: 19-33 Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina & 2 Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise
As you’d expect from one of the most loved Mexi-venues around, Bonita Bonita’s margarita list is off the chain good. As is the chow and the vibe, hence why it continues to pull a sizeable crowd year after year. If you’re going to line your belly coz #tequila, go with the banquet and get the best of everything this GC fave has to offer.
Our pick: Tom-Yum Margarita – 1800 Coconut tequila, fresh lime, habanero, lemon grass & ginger syrup, grapefruit juice and a salt rim.
Where: 2460 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach
It’s always margarita mania at Nobby’s Mexicali! Served on the rocks and made using fresh fruit and house infused tequilas, all margis are crafted using 100% Blue Agave tequila or mezcal, freshly squeezed lime juice and agave syrup. Choose from classic, watermelon, strawberry, passionfruit, chilli, cucumber & jalapeno, mezcal and coconut. And we’ll take the lot #thx.
Our pick: Passionfruit Margarita
Where: Level 1/2223 Gold Coast Highway, Nobby Beach
With no less than 14 (that’s one-four) ritas to choose from, we’d be here all day listing them all and srsly, just get down there and drink people! Colourful and bold like the staff, everything they do is inspired by the vivid heritage of Mexico, with a nod to our coastal home. With a juicy taco in one hand and a salty margi in the other, life made and happy International Marg Day!
Our pick: The Illegal – Illegal Joven mezcal, triple sec, blanco tequila & lime juice
Where: 6/26 James Street, Burleigh Heads
Another one with a cracking margarita list, Frida Sol is the baby sister of Bonita Bonita and naturally, has ‘excelente’ genes. Paying homage to the legend herself, Frida Kahlo, Frida Sol oozes a delectably sultry vibe. Feel like you’re livin’ life up in Tulum and immerse yourself in a wonder of textures, traditional Mexican decor and all things Frida…particularly the ritas!
Our pick: Frida Margarita – Herradura tequila, triple sec, fresh lemon & cucumber juice, jalapeños, agave syrup & a chipotle rim
Where: Level 1, 1176 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
There’s no better place to celebrate margarita month than at The Collective in Palmy! Kicking off on International Margi Day, the venue will be offering its own exclusive Patrón margarita menu…and you had us at Patrón! Enjoy specialty flavours until the end of March, including the Classic Patrón Margarita, Tropical Patrón Margarita, and the Hole Patrón Cup Margarita.
Our pick: Tropical Patron Margarita – Patrón Silver, lime juice, coconut syrup & pineapple juice.
Where: 1128 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Just because the joint’s Italian, doesn’t mean they can’t do a mean margi! The stunning, naturally inspired surrounds are enough for us but since it’s Margarita Month, we won’t say no to a tasty tipple or two either. The cocktails are next level, along with everything else on the menu. Line a few of those bad boys up, order a couple of pizza’s and it’s the definition of living your best life.
Our pick: Classic Margarita
Where: Beach House Plaza, 52-58 Marine Parade, Coolangatta
Steampunk Surfers Paradise
With modernised Victorian era décor, this glitter strip fave is always packed…and packing a darn good time. The best day to visit is in fact Monday because each week, it’s Margarita Monday! Now whilst this year, International Margi Day happens to fall on a Wednesday, we have full confidence that the legends at Steampunk will celebrate just as hard, with the likes of a classic Margarita, Chilli Margarita, Frozen Margarita, Passionfruit Margarita and Watermelon Margarita.
Our pick: Chilli Margarita
Where: Cavill Lane, 3113 Surfers Paradise Boulevard, Surfers Paradise
Because the team at White Oat can do no wrong, they naturally nail Gin Margaritas! With three to choose from including the OG Margy, Novara Margy and the Mango Margy (make it spicy), don’t hurt your head trying to choose – order all three! Bringing good times and freaking amazing gin to the north side, the bright, open, and inviting space screams ‘grab a crew’, and srsly, the stand-out copper gin distilling equipment is a vibe.
Our pick: Mango Margy (make it spicy) – Mango gin (Chilli mango gin), Cointreau, lime juice & agave syrup.
Where: 13-14/211 Brisbane Road, Biggera Waters
Palm Court, The Langham Gold Coast
Margaritas and good times go together like Maracas and Tambourines (see ‘our pick’ below to understand what we’re banging on about). The prestigious Palm Court may be famous for its bespoke take on the traditional Afternoon Tea, but its Lobby Bar mixes up signature cocktails and top shelf beverages from 4pm daily. What better way to take in the lagoon pool views and luxe coastal space.
Our pick: Maracas — Cenote Blanco tequila, Tamborine Mountain guava & lime liqueur, lime, agave, and orange blossom.
Where: The Langham Gold Coast, 38 Old Burleigh Road, Surfers Paradise
Nahm Talay Thai
Nahm Talay Thai doesn’t just bring high-end Thai nosh to Surfers, it also brings some chuck-a-sickie worthy cocktails too. One of which is of the Margarita persuasion and naturally, it’s our go-to when we’re in that neck of the woods. With multi-million dollar ocean views, this is the spot to be on International Margi day.
Our pick: Bird’s Eye Margarita – Birds eye chilli, tequila, orange liqueur, simple syrup, lime juice & Tajin chilli salt.
Where: Paradise Centre, 2 Cavill Ave, Surfers Paradise
If you’ve been to Cowch, you’ve indulged your sweet tooth and eaten your body weight in lush desserts every day of the week and twice on Sundays. But did you know you can also indulge in epic cocktails? At Inside Gold Coast, we’re well aware and never knock back an opportunity to enjoy a margi with our Milky Way Crepe. Do yourself a favour and get stuck in!
Our pick: Coco-Marsh Margarita with tequila, marshmallow liqueur, coconut and lime served with coconut rim and toasted marshmallows.
Where: Oracle East Building, E111/1 Oracle Boulevard, Broadbeach
Keeping their eats edgy and their sips edgier, Edgewater Dining certainly never fails in the wow factor stakes. This is particularly true for the margaritas section of the cocktail menu, featuring Margi’s Passion, Spelling Coconut, Sex in an Hour (#WideEyedEmoji), and Coming in Hotch. Pull up a pew on the gorgeous deck, take in the stunning waterfront views and work your way through the list.
Our pick: Sex in an Hour – Blueberry infused Espolón Blanco, 100% agave tequila, Joseph Cartron Watermelon liqueur, fresh watermelon juice, a touch of Joseph Cartron Crême de Cassis and Fiorente Elderflower liqueur, fresh lime juice and organic agave nectar with a pink Himalayan salt & sugar rim.
Where: Capri on Via Roma, Isle of Capri, Surfers Paradise
Sitting high on the striking HOTA Gallery, The Exhibitionist Bar delivers great flavours and explosions of tastes you won’t forget in a hurry…both in edible and drinkable varieties. Whether you want a light lunch with friends, a cocktail at sundown or a nightcap, this is where it’s at. And we can tell you first-hand (far too many times over) that the resident Margi unpacked below is one of the best.
Our pick: House Hot Marg – Herradura Blanco tequila, marionette orange, lime & house made hot sauce
Where: HOTA, Home of the Arts, Top Level, 135 Bundall Rd, Surfers Paradise
Words by Bianca Trathen.
Exciting news for all you theatre cabaret lovers, Dracula’s Cabaret Restaurant launched their brand new show just a few short weeks ago and the creepy crew are back at it again.
The newbie titled Muertos; which means dead in Spanish and the latest carnival de carnage is set to be a wild celebration that absolutely explodes on the Broadbeach stage.
It’s a tribute to Mexico’s Day of the Dead celebrations, moving at the bone-rattling pace you’ve come to know and love from Australia’s long running dinner slash theatre show.
There’s carnival-inspired acts, death-defying aerial acrobatics, live tunes from the clever crew and of course, the hilarious brand of comedy only Dracula’s can provide.
Muertos is all vibrant colours and hip-gyrating flamenco meshed with high energy Latin dance. Add dancing skeletons, galloping corpses, rocktacular live music, big wigs and lots of bare skin and you’ve got quite the time.
The Mexican theme has crept into every part of the iconic venue, including the menu, wine list and décor. How good.
Delivering the ultimate entertainment and live music experience, the show appears across five stages, as well as mid-air above the audience.
The talented cast lineup features crowd favourite, Coco Inia Dewar, renowned acrobatic adagio duo Lauren Skapalova and Bray Garcia, señorita deliciosas Amber Dawn-Finch and Sarah Douch, backed by the amazing live music talents of Viola Skyes and Tomi Gray.
For the uninitiated, Dracula’s is a world of nocturnal decadence, with mouth-watering dinner treats and tequila laced cocktails – presented by waiters with unrestrained lip-service.
Plus there’s a ghost train ride that’ll get you every time.
Packages start $59 per person for supper club, show only tickets with optional tapas menu, or $95 per person for a succulent three-course dinner and show experience.
Get on it.
LOCATION: 1 Hooker Blvd, Broadbeach
WHEN: Five days a week, Tuesday to Saturday
Over the past couple of years Palm Beach (or Palmy as it’s affectionately known) has well and truly been embracing it’s new found cool kid status.
While we can’t pinpoint the exact moment it officially transformed to ‘it’ suburb, lucky locals have been living large of late, with the emergence of all the beachside haunts to frolic between (though they do have to compete a little more for parking these days).
While in years gone by, the only thing reliably making Palmy a ‘must stop’ destination was a quiet-ish (albeit stunning) beach, and the high chance of catching a red on the way through. With an influx of laidback eateries, noteworthy restaurants, swanky bars and luxe boutiques popping up left right and centre, there’s never any shortage of things to do. These days, we can think of at least 17 epic reasons that make this buzzing suburb THE place to be.
Overlooking the ocean with the perfect pastel palette, Las Palmas is bringing Latin America to Palm Beach with a share-style menu, made up of mouthwatering flavours and a fresh cocktail list to match. Head in there for a Sunday arvo session or long lunch with your loves. It’ll be your new summer fave for sure.
Where: Level 1, 1097 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
The Scottish Prince
Tucked away, all moody low-lit with wild times written all over it, The Scottish Prince, sister venue of The Cambus Wallace and is one of the best drinking holes we have here on the Coast. It’s primarily a whisky bar boasting over 300 varieties of the tasty tipple plus a perfectly complementary menu including Steak & Ale Pies, Scotch fillets, fish and chips and on Sunday nights, an authentic Taste of Scotland tasting menu. All the very best things. Get in.
Where: 1176 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Palm Beach Farmers Market
The Gold Coast is home to many an impressive farmers market and one of our absolute favourites can be found in Palmy on Saturday mornings. From 6am at Palm Beach Currumbin High School you’ll find fresh local produce, artisan foods, specialty coffee, epic doughnuts, flowers, dog treats, the lot. The perfect way to spend a weekend morning.
Where: Thrower Drive, Palm Beach
Margaritas and Mexi-eats are some of our favourite things and happily, they’re on offer at Palmy’s delightful upstairs space, Frida Sol. There’s a chilli margarita that’ll knock your socks off and if you perch outside on the deck, a balmy ocean breeze – the combination of which will remind you exactly why you live on the Gold Coast. The perfect time.
Where: Level 1, 1176 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
The Pirate Park
Those with little ones will attest to the fact that the Pirate Park is up there with the best on the Coast. Located right near the water, the park far exceeds anything you ever got to play on as a kid with a pirate ship stuck in the sand and upended wine barrels perfect for all day climbing. If you don’t have any babes, Dune Café is close by as is the sparkling ocean and a dog beach on Currumbin Creek that’s always good for a laugh.
Where: 945 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach (on the left before the Currumbin Creek bridge)
No doubt you’ve already set foot inside The Collective more than once and why wouldn’t you with five restaurants to choose from? Open for lunch and dinner, you can stay all day and, as it’s a communal dining setting, you’re bound to make some new friends along the way. So, if you’re in the mood for pizza and tacos, head to The Collective, order both and wash it all down with a cocktail at the rooftop bar.
Where: 1128 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
It’s every local boho babe’s dream come true. Opened in 2013, White Bohemian stocks all your favourite hippy-esque labels including GD brand Kivari, Byron Bay cult-fave labels SPELL and Arnhem. These guys were one of the first to bring us the magic of the laid-back luxe aesthetic before the #boho trend took over the world (and our wallets), so we trust them and their epic curation of all things effortless style endlessly. There’s homewares too so, you know, prepare to spend up.
Where: Cnr Seventh Avenue and Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
It goes without saying that if you’ve ever driven through Palm Beach, you’ve definitely laid eyes on Balboa Italian. The beautifully appointed double-storey brick building is in a class of its own serving classic Italian dishes with modern interpretations and the freshest of flavours. It’s worth a visit just to experience the fitout, complete with overhead Vespa and exposed brick walls. The cocktails are unique and the wine selection varied. It’s all good to be honest, get down there.
Where:1069 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
It’s a cafe crossed with a motorbike workshop and the home of the best banana smoothies on the Gold Coast. That’s right, the best. There is not a single thing not to love about Espresso Moto from their very delicious breakfast goods (the brekky burritos are the bomb), to their use of Allpress coffee and the ever-friendly staff who always say g’day. There’s also a communal dog bed and the beach is right around the corner. So yeah, it’s the best.
Where: 1389 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
A somewhat secret cocktail bar, tucked away on the Gold Coast Hwy, Suga specialises in rum and good times and if you’re keen on either or both of those you should absolutely get down there. They have an impressive cocktail menu plus plenty of epic wines (pet nats, yes please) and beers so no matter what, you’re gonna love it.
Where: 1142 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Good Day Coffee Palm Beach
Launching a cafe in a hip and happening suburb surrounded by competition stiffer than a morning espresso is not for the faint of heart – but ever since they branched out from their OG Tugun location late last year, locals and weary travellers alike have unanimously agreed it’s always a good day for Good Day Coffee Palm Beach. Friendly faces serving Blackboard coffee and other staples like pastries and goat’s fetta laden smashed avo toast – we could easily eat and drink here every day. The epitome of simple eats, and great coffee, done well.
Where: 1073 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Ritual Yoga & Pilates
Found upstairs in a sunlit space oozing chill vibes is Ritual Yoga & Pilates. Owned by sisters Rose and Sophie, Ritual is only a couple of years old but has already become a favourite amongst both Palm Beach locals and those who reside in surrounding suburbs. If you’re in need of some rest and relaxation (or a solid sweat session), Ritual is calling your name.
Where: 9b Palm Beach Avenue, Palm Beach
Palm Beach Ave
PBA is one of those gems that so quickly won our hearts that we seem to forget this pretty-in-pink art deco stunner is only relatively new to Palmy’s ever-growing strip of uber-cool beachside hangouts. One of those venues where it’s 10’s all round, the tropical luxe, chandelier-laden interiors have us swooning every time, and we can never seem to get enough of the knockout food and cocktails (no matter how much we regret it the next morning). Plus they do bottomless brunch, so, need we say more?
Where: 6 Palm Beach Avenue, Palm Beach
Tank Bar & Dining
We can never seem to talk about Tank without the urge to get, well… tanked, which is some fairly genius subliminal marketing if you ask us. In our defense, what else are we supposed to do in a cracking little craft beer bar? We’re certainly not there to lick stamps.
The 10 rotating craft beer taps offers a nice mix of local and international brews, and the laid-back vibes of a modern beach shack style bar a hops, skip and a jump from the ocean are pretty hard to beat. Plus, with two levels, there’s plenty of primo spots to perch up, catch the sea breeze and watch the GC Hwy go by.
Where: 1166 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach
As we’ve probably already well established by this point, us Gold Coasters are big suckers for a cute fit-out. It’s hard to tell if it’s the perfectly peachy-pink interiors, or the Italian aromas wafting from the kitchen that keep us coming back to Toro’s Pizza like moths to a flame. And spoiler alert: it’s definitely the latter, since there are few smells that compare to that of a freshly baked, still bubbling wood-fired pizza. Carbs, cheese, more cheese, and BYO – this place is what Italian dreams are made of.
Where: Shop 7/2 Eighth Ave, Palm Beach
Overcoming the momentary temptation to leave this one out (in hopes of greedily keeping more of those highly coveted tables all for ourselves) – but no list about epic Palmy spots would be complete with such a glaring omission. Dishing up authentic Mexican eats, the menu is short but sweet, sticking only to their specialities with a focus on local, seasonal ingredients. Any day featuring beachside, street-style tacos like the zesty Birria Beef (complete with signature consommé to dip), and a coconut marg (because marg) is a very bueno day indeed.
Where: 1136 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Canvas Palm Beach
Who doesn’t love starting their day with a visit to their friendly local barista, with a leisurely peruse of some hand crafted homewares on the side #theperfectmorningdoesexist. And hey, if some of the latter – such as a candle that smells like bliss in a jar, or some cute ceramics – happen to come home with us along with a great cup of coffee, we’ll happily take the dopamine hit while we’re doing out bit to #supportsmall.
For Palmy locals the cute digs and delightful café fare are a definite draw card, but for parents the park proximity makes this spot unparalleled – along with the blissful moment’s peace and quiet babycino buys.
(And yes, we stopped being cool right around the same time we started caring about babycinos and where the good parks are.)
Where: Shop 3, Magnoli Building, 1338 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach
Words by Kellie Leader.