Finding a place in Brisbane to accommodate our needs is not always easy. I was looking for a bar with good food and decent gluten-free options for my partner. Additionally, I love a place with atmosphere and a bit of history. As I was soon to find out, Stratton Bar and Kitchen in Newstead ticks all these boxes and more.
I typically review restaurants mid-week with this blog, as I’m off adventuring/exploring on the weekends. Therefore, Stratton Bar and Kitchen was a little quiet when we arrived, but thankfully not too quiet. We were greeted warmly by Grace, who took care of us for the evening.
A little history
Owners Ben and Tarryn Brown, who also own Mrs Brown’s Bar & Kitchen around the corner, stumbled upon the site in late 2020 before deciding to renovate the old WWII hangar. Grace told us that Ben and Tarryn really look after the staff and she loves coming to work. She also told us they did much of the renovating for Stratton Bar and Kitchen themselves.
Ben and Tarryn incorporated the hangar’s original arches into their design while using steel and concrete with an open plan. The aesthetics definitely suit the eye-catching ceiling and it almost feels like you’re in a top-secret warehouse. In the adjoining space, there’s an area for functions and a courtyard with large plants and a glasshouse vibe.
After scoping out the place, we sat on a table near the kitchen and bar, which looked fun. However, the lighting was dim and as I was shooting video and photos with my phone, we decided to move to the centre. Here on the big table, we now had bright, slightly diffused light. Thought has gone into every aspect of the decor at Stratton Bar and Kitchen and the lighting is no exception.
Stratton Bar and Kitchen – the drinks
We ordered some cocktails and as I wanted to dive right in for an experience, I order the ‘cheeseburger bloody mary’. This cocktail really does taste like a spicy cheeseburger, although naughtier!
My partner ordered the watermelon spritz, which she enjoyed. As I’m a beer drinker, I soon ordered the hazy IPA on tap, which was excellent. I loved this part of the night, sitting inside the hangar with a cheesy grin and soaking up the Wednesday vibe.
Grace recommended the crispy mushroom bites, which were fried mushrooms served with truffle pesto cream, grated parmesan and chives. I’ll straight up say they were our favourite part of the meal. Wow. Arguably the most succulent mushrooms I’ve had! We also had the sweet and sour broccoli, which was served with ‘housemade sweet and sour sauce’. This was quite nice and the two dishes were filling for two people.
Our last dish, which was lighter yet more prized, was the kingfish sashimi cured in citrus, served with a cucumber salad and Thai basil oil. This was tender and fragrant with a subtle flavour, which paired well with the salad and dressing. It was the perfect choice for our now distended bellies.
Our overall experience
Stratton Bar and Kitchen was a fun Wednesday night experience with outstanding service (thanks Grace!), mouth-watering food, adventurous cocktails and an interesting atmosphere. It’s one of only two places I’ve reviewed so far that I would definitely return to – for the food, drinks, service AND atmosphere.
I also liked the flare in the bathrooms, the atrium-style courtyard and how open-planned the whole place is. I’m certainly keen to come here when it’s busier, as this place clearly caters for a few people.
We’ll most certainly be back!
Check out the Stratton Bar and Kitchen website for current food and drink options.