Inside Polonia – The Polish Restaurant Brisbane

Polonia ~ people of Polish descent living outside of Poland

Always keen to try something different – particularly if it’s a cultural experience – I sought out the Polish restaurant Brisbane is renown for. Located inside of Brisbane’s Polish club, ‘Polonia’, the restaurant is the centre of all things Polish that are proudly celebrated and shared with uninitiated Brisbanites like myself.     

Now I’ve never been to Poland and I’ve rarely tried Polish food. Although I did bring along my partner, who had a Polish grandma that loved to cook and passed on her recipes I still savour at Christmas time. I was excited about the food, but I was also keen to sample some vodka from its place of birth, and maybe a Polish beer or two. The Polish like to drink, right?

Polish restaurant Brisbane
Polonia’s bar and ordering station

Arriving at the rather exclusive-looking entrance, we walked upstairs and were greeted warmly by Agnieszka – a smiling, Polish-looking lady who told me the most popular beer in Poland was probably the Zywiec. So I ordered one, while my partner ordered the szarlotka (apple pie cocktail), which contains Zubrowka vodka, cloudy apple juice, a cinnamon stick and lemon slices. It really did taste like an apple pie!

Polish restaurant Brisbane
The szarlotka (apple pie cocktail)

We then took a seat and I absorbed our modest surrounds while my partner prepared our food order. My Zywiec was just okay, as we are so spoiled for choice in Australia with the myriad of microbreweries on offer today, so I was keen to look further. I chatted with the equally friendly Marta at the bar and ordered a 9.5% Baltic porter, which was much more to my liking. I soon found myself really warming to Polonia.

Shortly after, the food arrived – golabki – cabbage rolls stuffed with pork mince, served with mashed potato and rye bread. Fried pierogi (you can also have them steamed, but Marta assured me fried was more fun) – which are Polish dumplings with a variety of fillings. I chose cabbage & mushrooms, and potato and cheese. Lastly, we had the trzy placki ziemniaczane – potato pancake trio – three medium-sized potato pancakes served with mushroom sauce and dill.

The golabki
The fried pierogi
The trzy placki ziemniaczane – potato pancake trio, or what was left of it

The food was simple yet exceptional, the kind you would expect from a legendary Polish grandma. The flavours were appetising without being overwhelming and the temperature and portions were spot on. The fact that Agnieszka and Marta were so smiley, helpful and efficient certainly added to our experience. Check out my TikTok video below for more savoury detail!

Polish restaurant Brisbane
Mid Polonia party

Enjoying some quality Polish stodge at the Polish Club in Milton, Brisbane. 1. Pierogi – deep fried dumplings filled with mushrooms. 2. Golabki – cabbage stuffed with pork. 3. Placki – Polish potato pancakes with mushroom sauce. #polishdinnerparty #polishclub #brisbaneeats #brisbanefoodblogger #brisbaneblogger #brissielife #brisbanefoodadventure

♬ Gdzie jest biały węgorz ? (Zejście) – Cypisolo

I was feeling pretty warm and fuzzy at this point so I thought it was time to see Marta and ask for a vodka recommendation. ‘A shot or a 6-shot paddle’? She asked me. I wasn’t going to commit to six shots, particularly as my partner doesn’t drink a lot, so I just went with a shot of Zubrowka, which Marta assured me was a bit of a classic in Poland. Smooth it was too, and now the perfect time, I’d decided, to just sit and digest our perfectly agreeable Polish experience.


After some pleasant chit-chat and realising we were the last left in Polonia, my partner and I decided not to hold Agnieszka and Marta up any longer and headed home. In all, I very much recommend you pay a visit to the little Polish restaurant Brisbane hides away in the backstreets of Milton. If you’re looking for something different to do, this was a fun experience.

Polish restaurant Brisbane
Some of Polonia’s Polish treasures on display

What I loved

The food, the drink and particularly our friendly and hardworking Polish hosts, Agnieszka and Marta. I also loved the way the entrance sign is illuminated, making you feel you’re somewhere exclusive. Maybe we were – inside the spartan penthouse of Polonia, which I later discovered is one of Queensland’s oldest continuous ethnic clubs.

Polish restaurant Brisbane
Polonia’s entrance

Note: There’s quite a bit more to Polonia than just its restaurant. Check out the website for more details.

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