Nundah means “chain of water holes” in the local Aboriginal dialect, but aside from nearby Kedron Brook which borders its southern edge, it hasn’t really lived up to its name. Its main drag, Sandgate Road, has been lacking in choice for locations to whet your whistle on a Friday after work for many years now.
The lack of interest in the area stemmed from the building of the Toombul shopping centre in the 70’s, which drove folks out of a shopping district of Nundah Village, which was already failing due to high traffic congestion. It’s easy to see why no one would want to invest in premises along the thoroughfare.
In 2001, however, a new tunnel was built to bypass Nundah Village and recent funding from the Brisbane City Council has breathed new life into an area that’s seen only op-shops, pawn brokers, and tuck stores. New residential development around the Village is bringing new people into the area, and the gentrification process is beginning. Older, “unappealing” businesses are being pushed out while trendy restaurants, cafes, and boutiques are taking their place. The nightlife along Sandgate Rd, however, has been lacking, but that is starting to change.
The current two pubs, the Royal and the Prince of Wales, were for lack of a better word, dives. Not the good kind of dive; the bar-fly, pokie-machine, go-there-to-drink-away-your-sorrows kind of dive. Both pubs have caught the wave of change in the area and renovated, looking to cater to the newer crowd, with the Royal taking a much bigger step towards sophistication. Its Italian menu is phenomenal, but its enhanced beer menu is what has caught the eye of the local beer fans. Along with the regular offerings you’d find in yesteryears Royal, you’ll find brews from James Squire, 4 Pines, and Holgate, giving the people of Nundah some exposure to really good beer.
To really kick things into the next level, Nundah has two brand new bars opening up next to each other and across the road from the Royal. The first of the two is ‘The Village Social’. The Village Social is focused on bringing the people of Nundah a local bar that emphasises quality and community. Aside from featuring top-shelf spirits and a list of international wines, they will be stocking and selling around 40 different craft beers ranging from Two Birds, Holgate, and Noisy Minor from across their repurposed wood bar.
The Village Social will feature Tapas plates and other nibbles that can be enjoyed in the exposed-brick space.
Just up the corner and some stairs from The Village Social are Fitz and Potts. Run by power couple Brett Fitzpatrick and Cassie Potts, F+P will be pushing Australian with their line-up of small batch craft beer, boutique wines, and artisanal spirits, all produced in this great country. With a focus on education, you can expect to find high quality beverages with a good depth of info on each one. Accompanying the kitschy décor and funky wallpaper will be a menu featuring jaffles and brunch platters, just to name a few.
The real draw for Fitz and Potts is the outdoor balcony area. Lined with AstroTurf, flamingos, and a stingless native beehive, the deck is the perfect spot to soak in the sun while people watching the patrons of Sandgate Road.
Between The Royals pub atmosphere and entry level craft beer, the Village Socials hip attitude, and Fitz and Potts’ focus on quality Australian product, Nundah is definitely on the rise. Good beer can be found in 3 different venues only a 30 second walking distance from each other. Along with good beer, good wine and spirits are plenty to satisfy the uninitiated. Even though the 3 locations are very different in their approach, all are working towards making Nundah a classier, more current, neighbourhood and finally having its own proper “chain of water holes”.
The Royal is currently open 7 days a week at 1259 Sandgate Road
The Village Social is located at 1188 Sandgate Road and will be opening soon.
Fitz and Potts can be found 1180 Sandgate Road and will be having their Grand Opening on the 31st of October.