Ripe restaurant South Brisbane Entrance
Sometimes, you find beautiful food in the most unlikely places. This tiny restaurant, really only a pick-up counter and four sidewalk tables, inspired my loyalty during a recent trip to Brisbane, Australia. I was there for three days—nine meals—and I chose to eat five of those meals at this restaurant. Read on to see why.

Ripe, 18 Meriwether Street, South Brisbane, Queensland

Ripe Restaurant, South Brisbane MenuThe restaurant occupies a galley kitchen and a portion of sidewalk on a busy street in South Brisbane, in between the two buildings housing Morgan Suites Hotel. The owners are Brett McNamara and his sister Debra. Brett presides over the counter like a jovial bartender, perfectly suited to the hospitality industry. Within a day he knew my name and kept my specialty diet straight. I felt completely safe in his hands, and did not feel that I had to remind him about my low-sodium and gluten-free needs. That is incredibly rare in a restaurant, but Brett went beyond that, making me feel like it was his pleasure and privilege to feed me. I felt cared for.
Ripe Brekkie Day One, South BrisbaneOur first morning, I asked what he might recommend that was low-sodium and gluten-free. He provided freshly made beans (a British and Australian tradition) with a sprig of rosemary, fluffy scrambled eggs, and tomato-onion chutney. I also ordered the purple carrot-apple-ginger juice, which was sweet and delightfully zingy. That’s my friend Jen’s breakfast behind mine: coconut yogurt with berries and house-made maple-pecan granola and a latte. I was only disappointed that I couldn’t have the smashed avo, because Brett explained that they prepped all of it in the early morning for the day, and it was already salted.
Ripe Brekkie Day Two Customized, South BrisbaneOn my second morning, Brett had set aside avocado for me, so I could have that with my eggs. I also asked whether it was possible to have a juice with greens instead of apple, as the previous day’s juice was incredibly sweet. “Of course!” Here is my day two breakfast.

Ripe Chef Sandy Bloomfied, South Brisbane

Gorgeous and talented Chef Sandy Bloomfield

Food was delivered by the staff, all of whom were so kind and accommodating: Sandy Bloomfield, Jonathan Peterson, Carl Kleinhause, and Justin Kim. For dinner I had lamb burgers, lovely salad, and gluten-free desserts which varied.
Ripe Takeaway, South BrisbaneThey even made me an egg sandwich to go and a jar of coconut yogurt with berries on the morning I left. They offer a wonderful selection of freshly made salads and sandwiches which vary from day to day. They serve gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, paleo, and special-order meals. If you ever visit Brisbane, please make a point of stopping by and saying hello to Brett and the team.
Ripe Restaurant, South Brisbane | Leftover jar from my takeaway coconut yogurt

I love that they are as no-waste as possible, serving yogurt and smoothies in re-used jars. This is my favorite souvenir from the trip: my takeaway coconut yogurt jar