If you’re a mega pizza fan (and LBR, who the hell isn’t), we have just discovered THE best traditional pizza joint you KNEAD to know about! Crust us, this is no exaggeration and we’d like to see someone have a crack at ‘topping’ this place but not really, coz we don’t want anyone to do their ‘dough’. Where is this ‘slice’ of heaven you ask? La Casetta Pizza Bar is the name on everyone in Paradise Point’s lips, serving up a culinary journey straight outta Neapoli.
Yet another feather in GC Hospitality Group owners Jack Chaglasian and Mark Geraghty’s cap, La Casetta joins the much-loved Mecca Bah and Greek newcomer The Charcoal Hub on their list of quality Euro eats destinations. These culinary gurus wanted to transport the community to the heart of Italy where they first discovered their love for wood-fired pizzas. Well bravo, job well done as these are legit as magnificently mind-altering (in the best way) as anything you’d find in the motherland. Hand on heart!
Using the homely charm of Neapoli for style inspo, there’s a super authentic pizza oven on full display to set the tone. If you’d like to eat-in, there’s outdoor dining, or you can grab and go – perhaps to the stunning Paradise Point Park a hop, skip and a jump away. If you can’t decide, there are three letters which might help sway you in a particular direction…B.Y.O! And seriously, how can we be this lucky to find such unbeatable food and the option to bring our own grape juice?! *chefs kiss*
Who do we have to thank for whipping up such unforgettable eats? Award-winning uber-passionate Head Chef Youssef that’s who! This man is an absolute gem, and not just because his pizza-making prowess is world-class but because he is one of the most passionate chefs you will ever meet. So what would we recommend? Let us tell you whilst wiping drool from our mouths (#TMI) as we relive our trip to our new number uno pizza haunt.
Firstly, an appetiser is in order because we can, and holy yum – they make Frittelle (happy dance) which are fried pizza puffs with parmesan and rosemary cream. Then we’re moving right into the main event because maximum belly real estate must be available for what lies ahead. Who could go past the Signature La Casetta Pizza and certainly not us. It’s a Margherita with salami, pork sausages, red onion and chilli – and it’s giving us beyond Bellissima vibes. If you have a family of 4 to feed or have just come off some fad diet and need to feed ya face, strap yourself in for a Loaded Supreme Pizza. This bad boy is two pizzas in one; a Supreme with not 1 but 2 bases with toppings loaded into the middle…. and we’re calling it – this is pure genius. Also worthy of a notable mention is the Mortazza with mozzarella, smoked provola, mortadella, truffle cream, crumble pistachio and rocket. Life-changing!
If you still have room for more (no judgement….) there is of course a dessert menu filled with satisfyingly sweet endings to your La Casetta visit. A highlight for us is the Nutella Cheesecake because well… Nutella and cheesecake. Duh!
Where: Shop 9, 2 Grice Street, Paradise Point
When: Monday-Thursday: 5-8pm, Friday: 5-10pm, Saturday: 12-3pm & 5-10pm, Sunday: 12-3pm & 5-8pm
Words by Bianca Trathen.
Pizza makes people happy, that’s a fact. Even the word pizza is a fun time. Say it out loud right now and pay attention to increased levels of happy. Now imagine yourself eating pizza and you’re on the same level as the rest of the world today.
Why? Because pizza is the delivery option of the gods, we made that up, but it’s one of the originals and that friends, is something to celebrate. Our way of celebrating is writing a list for you fine people to make life (and pizza finding) easier.
So here it is. From south to north because a change is as good as a holiday (it’s not).
A relative newbie in Cooly, Francie’s is the Italian bestie you never knew you needed. Run by a coupla legends who, quite rightly, saw a gap in the traditional pizza market down that end of the Coast. The crew have 15 flavours of pizza on offer and their own range of wine and there isn’t really anything better in the world than that combo. Except for maybe the fact that the pizzas have puns for name – Piers Brosnan anyone? Yeah, see. Text your order for takeaway 0411 415 554 Where: 102 Griffith St, Coolangatta
Earth N Sea
These guys have been in the business of pizza since 1976 so, as you might imagine, they know what’s up. With a view of the actual sea and all the good vibes Cooly has to offer. They’ve got MANY varieties of pizza including one called Prawneroni which is pure gold (and delicious). Mullumbimby Madness also sounds like a time you’d like to have. BRB. moving to Cooly. Open for takeaways during the day and deliveries/takeaways at night. Call on 5536 3477
Where: 60 Marine Pde, Coolangatta
The big, beautiful building on the highway in Palmy is home to a number of Italian delights, not least of all a moped suspended from the roof. As you would know, if you’ve been, their menu is the definition of next-level and the pizzas, in particular, are perfection. There are 16 varieties, divided into red and white sauce bases and maybe just try them all because life’s too short to care about carb counting. We’ll meet you there!
Where: 1069 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach
Your mate and ours, Justin Lane in Burleigh is the king of pizza. No doubt you’ve sunk a few slices while sipping on cocktails and scoping out the scene. We’re quite partial to the prawn, calamari, garlic confit, mozzarella, chilli, parsley and lemon pizza but hey, you do you. While it’s ciao for now for dining inhouse, you can still order takeaway, delivery and now with booze, just order online. Where: 1708-1710 Gold Coast Highway, Burleigh Heads
Stoked Wood Fire Pizza
It seems people who have been to Stoked Wood Fire Pizza want to keep it a secret and fair enough, it’s epic but too bad, because it’s epic. Tucked away at Stockland Burleigh Heads is a gem you may have heard increasing whispers about since opening last year. Quite obviously, the pizzas are wood fired and also quite obviously that equals delicious. There are plenty of flavours, all of which are worth a sample. Call 0427 473 095 to order… personal Stoked deliveries coming soon.
Where: Stockland Burleigh Heads, West Burleigh Rd, Burleigh Heads
Alright, if you haven’t been to That’s Amore in Miami, you’ve been missing out on some fine Italian fare. These guys are kind of hidden away in Miami Shopping Village but do not live a life that doesn’t include finding them. Everything’s good but the pizzas are pure perfection and very reasonably priced. Get it. Phone 5520 0797 or find them online.
Where: 110 Mountain View Ave, Miami
Woodfired pizza come at us. The Italian family behind Gemellini are a gift from the Gods. They’ve created an authentic Italian experience in Nobbys and for that we are eternally grateful. They’re all ridiculous but go the Funghi Bianca if you can’t decide. It’s got mozzarella, mixed marinated mushrooms, truffle oil and parmigiano. There’s a new updated menu with cheaper prices too for both Gemellini Mermaid Beach and Gemelli in Broadbeach! Phone 5575 1418 to get your real homemade Italian food delivered for free.
Where: 2247 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach
Okay, so these guys are something else. They focus on traditional Neapolitan styles and they cannot be faulted on pizza production. Last time we sampled the Gamberetti e Zucchine because a. it sounds fancy and we can pronounce it and b. it’s got San Marzano tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, zucchini, garlic and prawns. YEP. Give them a tingle on 5526 8635 or if ordering online use code DZ30 for 30% off your takeaway order.
Where: 2/2715 Gold Coast Highway, Broadbeach
Without a doubt one of the most iconic Italian restaurants on the Coast. For 34 years, Alfresco has seen it all. But while it’s usually a delight to dine in, we’re just happy we can still enjoy the menu at home. Our fav, the mighty Vesuvius layered with pepperoni, capsicum and a touch of chilli. Of course leave room for their traditional lasagne. Pick up or delivered right to your door phone 5538 9333, text 0402 026 083.
Where: 2/3018 Surfers Paradise Blvd, Surfers Paradise
Salt Meats Cheese
Let us begin by saying there is a pizza with FOUR CHEESES on it and that should be enough quite frankly. Found in Surfers Paradise, Salt Meats Cheese boasts all the delicious Italian things (as referenced in their name) and although off topic, they also make pasta in a wheel or Parmesan cheese. It’s Italian gourmet at its cheesy best. Bye. Order online or call 5661 1517 to place a contactless pick-up order.
Where: The 4217, 10 Beach Road, Surfers Paradise
Pizza Paradise Gourmet Kitchen
We were once told this place had ‘the best pizza by a country mile’ and that’ll about do us. There’s a pizza called The Catch and it is indeed that. Topped with capsicum, calamari, prawns, mussels, barramundi, shallots, garlic, rocket, lemon and aioli it’s an actual taste sensation. If you’re a northerner, they’ll deliver it right to your door. Best.
Where: SHOP 3, 20 Grice Avenue, Paradise Point
Words by Kirra Smith.
Our ‘northerners’ on the GC are a fiercely patriotic bunch, long determined for their neck of the woods to get the cool cred normally reserved for the other end of town. Paradise Point is one particularly notable spot where there is much to see and do whether you’re after a family-friendly day out, caffeine hit, an eats spot for date night or a liquid lunch (or actual lunch, although we’re partial to the former) with your gal pals.
Here are a handful of reasons why locals love Paradise Point.
Northern GC folk who were fans of Burleigh Baker (in Burleigh – who’d have thunk it…) were high fiving each other when the Paradise Point sister popped up. With a passion for crafting artisan sourdough bread and brewing excellent Handsome brand coffee, the cafe menu is based around the bread (obvs), with freshly made dishes sourced from the best ingredients. Carbs, come at us.
Where: Shop 7/46 The Esplanade, Paradise Point
Jonez on Ephraim
Dr Jones, Jones, calling Dr Jones…. No there is no doctor but there is a Michelin Star Chef, Gary Jones. So expect a fine-dining haven offering up the finest seasonal ingredients, fresh fish and classical French cuisine. We’re ordering Duck Liver Parfait with sourdough and marinated figs, Quail Porchetta and for dessert, Scroppino; prosecco and vodka lemon sorbet (hells yeah. Can we have seconds…and thirds…and… you get the point).
Where: Ephraim Island, Paradise Point
Paradise Point Parklands
Undeniably one of the GC’s most breathtaking park areas, it’s an absolute must-see. Overlooking the beautiful Broadwater, pack a picnic, throw a snag on the barbie and let the kids entertain themselves for hours in the large playground areas. There are open grassed spaces perfect for a game of cricket, and the walking trail will get your heart-rate up while you take in the million-dollar views… quite literally with views of some Sovereign Island homes.
Where: The Esplanade, Paradise Point
This hole-in-the-wall is a newer player on the Paradise Point eats and coffee scene, and an instant hit from day dot. With a fit-out that screams modern chic (think polished concrete floors, rustic grey walls, foliage for a pop of greenery and moody lighting for days), her it-girl vibes are only rivaled by the coffee and delish counter food selection.
Where: 1/46 The Esplanade, Paradise Point
It’s been a winner with locals for years for a darn good reason. The fresh, hearty Italian food at Mano’s is first class, as is the service and welcoming ambience. Menu highlights include the impressive range of pastas (I die), steak and seafood dishes, not to mention their delish daily specials. They’re fully licenced because what even is pasta without wine?
Where: 40 The Esplanade, Paradise Point
Formerly Plant-Based Café, there are no surprises what sort of cuisine this little pearler dishes up. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and featuring arguably the best vegan food around town (and hey, competition is fierce in this space), expect a nosh-up of vegan versions of crowd favourites like poke bowls, burgers, nachos, tacos, wraps, epic sides, juices, smoothies, coffee and more.
Where: 1/2 Grice Ave, Paradise Point
Paradise Point Bowls Club
You get all the trimmings you’d expect from a bowls club here; live entertainment, hearty eats, wallet-friendly drinks and warm, friendly smiles. Bowls, Brews & Chews kicks off every Sunday from noon where you can get a game of bowls, platter for 4, 3L beer tower or 3L cocktail tower (say what?!) from only $85! Oh and there’s a courtesy bus. Which you’ll obvs need.
Where: 22 Thrush Ave, Paradise Point
Buoy Oh Buoy
This nautical-themed northern gem is equal parts cute and cool, founded by lovely local lass Kelly Kohler. We’re ordering a Scram-Bowl every day of the week with scrambled eggs, charred cherry tomatoes, avocado, rocket, pesto dressing and sourdough. And adding haloumi coz, haloumi! To finish, are you treating yo-self to a freshly baked pastry for the road? Oh Buoy you are!
Where: Shop 8/27 Falkinder Ave, Paradise Point
Jabiru Island Park
Everything you need is right here including stunning water views, electric barbecues, sheltered picnic tables, large shade trees, fishing platform, sheltered swimming closure, boat ramp and toilet facilities. Take the walkway under the bridge to Phil Hill Environmental Park, or stroll along the boardwalks for a look at the natural habitat from stunning viewing vantage points. Yes please!
Where: Jabiru Island Park, Oxley Dr, Paradise Point
Cross + Feather
Serving up finger lickin’ good brekkies (and dinners Thursday to Saturday), this one is a must. The chow is first class, as is the friendly and attentive service you’ll get every time. And, there’s just something universally cool about the FOOD wall art piece which sets the tone from the get-go…locals, you know what we’re talking about. Don’t even get us started on the cocktails…. #bookanuber
Where: 2/2 Grice Ave, Paradise Point
Words by Bianca Trathen.
Are you a sucker for a souvlaki? Do you fangirl for falafel? Are you gaga for a Greek salad? And yes, you’ve no doubt guessed where we’re going with this, and that’s straight to Greece. Well, sorta, kinda, not really at all, but you’d be forgiven for thinking otherwise when you feed your face at this northern GC newbie and side note – is it just us, or is it breeding season for eats and drinks spots up this neck of the woods?! Well feta late than never we say, and can we have a round of applause for the new kid on the block, The Charcoal Hub in beautiful Paradise Point. It’s already a fava-rite with the locals and perhaps we’re overdoing the puns again and for this we Apollo-gise.
Serving up authentic Greeky goodness with slow, flame-cooked meats prepared with in-house special flavours that melt in your mouth, you won’t leave hungry. Choose from outdoor or indoor bar-style dining, and watch the chefs flex their culinary muscles as they cook, carve and create in the open style grill kitchen. Founders Jack Chaglasian and Mark Geraghty from The GC Hospitality Group identified the need for some Southern European-inspired chow in the area and set about changing things up. And this isn’t a case of beginner’s luck as these forward-thinking fellas are also behind the renowned Mecca Bah restaurants, so you know they give good nosh.
Bringing a delicious menu to the community for the whole family to swoon over, it’s the perfect stop for a quick grab-and-go smoko. It also fits the bill for hungry mums and dads to take over the road while the kids go bonkers at the famous Paradise Point Park. Or, if you can’t be stuffed cooking (which is us most nights), swing in for a casual family-friendly lunch or dinner. Eats are prepared fresh to order by the team of experienced culinary geniuses, led by Head Chef Jin. Using only the best of the best premium cuts of meat and quality ingredients, the mouth-watering flavours are anything but dis-Crete!
We love ourselves some Southern Europe-inspired chow so we’d happily nom our way through the whole menu but if we must pick a dish, it’s gotta be a traditional Souvlaki. But why choose chicken or lamb when you can go a Combo and get both! With the tenderest chicken and lamb, onion, parsley, tomato, lettuce, tzatziki and house chips, it’s a taste sensation. Or, if you have the family in tow, you can’t beat the Share Plate. It feeds 2 to 3 peeps with 250g of lamb, 250g of chicken, boneless crispy chicken, chips, with roasted garlic sauce and chipotle sauce and ohmygod we’re drooling….a lot. Oh and if you and the fam are caught fighting over the last piece of boneless crispy chicken, (because if you know, you know), you can also order it as a side…. andddd of course you’re ordering a serving of that.
Not a meat-eater? Don’t worry, you’re still welcome here, as their non-meaty meals are nothing shy of pure deliciousness. The Sheep Milk Cheese Souvlaki is a popular choice with yep, you guessed it, sheep milk cheese, onion, parsley, tomato lettuce, tzatziki and house chips. Or, you could sway in the direction of a flavoursome Greek Salas, or Falafel Plate, with four pieces of falafel, tzatziki sauce, hommus and your choice of salad or chips. Cue more drooling.
There is really nothing like it this side of the Gold Coast and one thing’s for sure, once you’ve had a piece of The Charcoal Hub, you’ll definitely be back for more!
Where: Shop 10/ 2 Grice Avenue, Paradise Point
When: 12pm – 3pm & 4pm – 8pm, Monday – Sunday
Words by Bianca Trathen.