An oasis of alfresco dining and fresh produce has sprung up in the heart of bustling Southport as
the area continues its rejuvenation and evolution into the Gold Coast’s CBD.
The recent unveiling of Australia Fair Metro has locals, office workers, students and shoppers rejoicing – with the lively new precinct offering a wide and delicious range of culinary options, creating the perfect setting for visitors to ‘shop, dine and chill’ both day and night.
Boasting a fresh, white exterior with landscaped open spaces, Metro is the result of a $15 million makeover of Australia Fair’s west wing and features seven alfresco-style eateries along its street front which serve up an eclectic array of international cuisines from Italian and Portuguese to Mexican and Asian fare.
Visitors can also explore the vibrant shopping and dining destination for additional food and retail offerings spanning from health food supplies to a fresh fruit and vegetable grocer and a gourmet butchery and seafood vendor.
Delving into the mouth-watering offerings, Ocean Road takes a look at Metro’s new eating houses and retailers from the outside in…
Kubo’s Bar & Grill: This family-run restaurant brings authentic Filipino cuisine to the heart of Southport, serving up a wide range of traditional and somewhat unique dishes that are native to their culture. Kubo’s boasts outdoor dining and an intimate interior setting, complete with a vibrant green feature wall lined with real bamboo shoots. In addition to the whole roast pig on display, popular menu items and cuisine delicacies include crispy pork hocks, ‘Pinaputok na Bangus’ (grilled milkfish belly wrapped in a banana leaf), spicy sisig and the colourful ‘Halo-Halo’ dessert.
Tian Shan: Tian Shan blends traditional Chinese dishes originating from the famed Silk Road region of Xinjiang with elements of Western Chinese, Central Asian and Eastern European cuisines. Diners can discover the melting pot that is Uyghur cuisine, with dishes like braised lamb kebabs, spicy tofu, home-style stir-fries, dumplings, naan, skewers and tandoor pastries.
SoPo Dining Room: Boasting a modern and minimalistic décor, SoPo Dining Room serves up a tempting selection of re-imagined comfort food, focusing particularly on share-plate style offerings – but with a creative touch. A homemade pita and salad menu has been designed for the health and time conscious, while its full a la carte menu appeals to the likes (and tastes) of Southport’s corporate market, being available both lunch and dinner. Dishes such as the Sticky Asian Pork Neck, 82 Degree Octopus and Prawn Toast are among the casual dining highlights.
Burrito Bar: Promising cuisine with an authentic Mexican flavour, the Burrito Bar team puts its unique and colourful spin on burritos, nachos, enchiladas and tacos; an example being its heavenly chocolate tacos and nachos. There are fresh Mexican-infused salads for the health-conscious or Mexican grilled ribs for those wanting something more hearty. The bar is stocked with an extensive selection of cocktail liquors that can make just about any cocktail imaginable.
Oishi Teppanyaki: Offering a sizzling array of flavoursome dishes, Oishi Teppanyaki blends authentic Japanese cuisine with a theatrical dining experience. Patrons watch chefs as they dice, slice, chop, juggle and fling ingredients across the grill and onto plates, creating an engaging dining atmosphere. For those less daring, there is a traditional a’ la carte menu. There are also group dining options, with offerings such as the ‘Family Special’ – a decadent platter of beef skewers, prawns, chicken teriyaki and steamed or fried rice – proving popular for families.
Nando’s: The popular Afro-Portuguese eatery sports a funky interior fusing earthy textures and unique designs, and a menu that will have your mouth watering. With a wide range of menu items, including flame-grilled chicken, burgers, wraps and pitas, Nando’s has something for all tastes.
Pasta Providore: Who doesn’t love good Italian? Pasta Providore pairs delicious Italian cuisine with fast service, for those wanting a quick, but hearty eat. Patrons can select their own pasta and sauce, before handing it over to the chef who will transform their selections into a steaming meal within minutes. There’s also a soup of the day, garden salad with a choice of dressings, and delicious desserts. Liquid refreshments include premium beer and wine, soft drinks and coffee.
And we can’t forget what’s on the inside…
Nature’s Fuel: Offering simple, healthy and delicious takeaway food, Nature’s Fuel is the place to get your health fix in Southport. Its ‘Grab and Go Bar’ serves organic coffee, salads, fresh wraps, raw cakes and acai bowls perfect for a healthy breakfast or lunch. There is also a full range of health food products in store, such as superfood powders, organic spreads and vitamins.
Metro Farmers Market: Stocking a wide array of fresh fruit and vegetables, Metro Farmers Market also complements the nearby Chinatown with its very own Asian grocery lines featuring selected delicatessen products including specialised noodles, tofu and sprouts. Thirsty shoppers can also fill up at the popular self-serve orange juice station, where they can squeeze their own fresh orange juice in the matter of seconds.
Metro Butcher & Seafood: Metro Butcher & Seafood features a range of seafood, pork, beef and poultry cuts favoured by cooks dabbling in Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese cuisine, along with special and harder to source meat portions such as pork and beef tripe, pork ear, tongue, liver and feet. The fresh seafood counter will include a central fish display with each day’s catch as well as a tank filled with live fish, crab or abalone. Two takeaway food areas will cater to those wanting a quick bite, with the BBQ area providing ready to eat goods such as roasted duck, BBQ pork and honey chicken wings, while the fish and chip area offers traditional fish and chips, healthy burgers and fresh salads.
Adding to its already strong family and lifestyle focus, Australia Fair Metro is also home to a gym, pharmacy, bulk-billed medical centre, massage parlor and other general retailers.
Metro is the exciting first phase of Australia Fair’s contribution to Southport’s transformation, with further redevelopment of the iconic shopping centre now under way.
For more information, visit www.australiafairmetro.com.au