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  5. Fortitude Valley
Essa Restaurant, Fortitude Valley, AU-QLD

Essa Restaurant

4.7
4.7
634 reviews
$A41 to $A100
Wine Bar
ESSA provides a destination to escape the expected.

Just like the raw interiors in which we reside, our work is simple but considered.

The ethos in the kitchen embraces collaboration with local farmers, hunters and providores, promoting an environmentally conscious approach to the menu. Harvest driven dishes provide the creative parameters for our ever evolving dining experience.

ESSA is open Tuesday through Saturday from 5pm till late and Friday, Saturday and Sunday lunch from 12pm.

Make a booking

2 people

19:30


Booked 11 times today
Experiences are available.

Additional information

  • Dining style
    Casual Dining
  • Price
    $A41 to $A100
  • Cuisines
    Wine Bar, Modern Australian, Modern European
  • Hours of Operation
    Lunch Fri, Sun 12:00 pm–4:00 pm Dinner Tue–Sat 5:00 pm–11:00 pm
  • Phone number
    (07) 3177 1011
  • Payment Options
    AMEX, Mastercard, Visa
  • Dress Code
    Casual Dress

Experiences

  • Five Chefs, Five Plates

    A$66.00 per person

    Multiple dates available
    An experimental series taking over Wednesday evenings, providing the younger chefs, guest chefs and local producers with a platform to showcase fresh ideas and menu offerings. Every Wednesday night you can sample Five plates from Five chefs from $66pp. Dishes change weekly so no two weeks are the same. Please note on Wednesdays this is the only menu available and dietary requirements cannot be catered for.
    Five Chefs, Five Plates photo
  • Sunday School at Essa

    A$88.00 per person

    Multiple dates available
    Things are a bit different here on Sundays. We let our hair down, turn up the music and serve a big family style lunch from 12pm. It's all share plates and the menus changes often but, so you know what to expect we post the menu on instagram every week. Oh yeah and there's a bit of booze too! Heaps of fun, but especially great with a large group of friends and yes, we can organise dietary requirements if you let us know when you book, leave a note in the comments In session every Sunday, kick ons in The Nixon Room from 2pm.
    Sunday School at Essa photo
  • Mother's Day Sunday School

    A$98.00 per person

    12 May 2024 only
    It's Mother's Day and Sunday School. We'll be posting the menu online soon but we've got heaps of things to treat Mum, we may or may not have the spanner crab pasta back for the day and Phil's mums chocolate torte with brandy cream. We'll also have extra champagne on ice. The Nixon Room is open from 12pm for cocktails to start or finish the day.
    Mother's Day Sunday School photo

What 634 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant

4.7
4.7 based on recent ratings
  • 4.7Food
  • 4.7Service
  • 4.7Ambience
  • 4.4Value

NoiseEnergetic

Diners' Choice Awards

  • Brisbane

    Innovative

  • Brisbane

    Great for fine wines

  • Brisbane

    Romantic

  • Inner Suburbs

    Best Overall

  • Inner Suburbs

    Best Service

  • Inner Suburbs

    Best Ambience

  • Inner Suburbs

    Innovative

  • Inner Suburbs

    Great for fine wines

  • Inner Suburbs

    Romantic

634 Reviews
  1. Steph

    Melbourne

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined 3 days ago

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    My friend and I visited for her birthday lunch April 19th 2024 and ordered the set menu at $109pp it was absolutely worth it! Very good value for money. Our waiter was fantastic, beautifully friendly Frenchman (my apologies, his name escapes me) described the food, offered his advice on wine pairings and was very friendly and conversational. All of the food was divine and cooked perfectly. The wine is lovely also. Interior decor is cool and industrial. Think cosy Melbourne warehouse/hole in the wall wine bar. Beautiful attention to detail in the green marble, exposed brick walls, matted glass louvre windows and black detailing. The only thing I wasn't a particular fan of was the music choice, seemed unfitting for the venue. The atmosphere was a little confused in that, but it definitely wasn't offensive by any means. Just something that struck me as odd. We had a brilliant experience and will definitely be back. Thank you for a gorgeous lunch!

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  2. JudithL

    Brisbane

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined 4 days ago

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Enjoyed the set menu and the variety along with the great service

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  3. Ndto

    Gold Coast

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on 12 April 2024

    1. Overall 2
    2. Food 2
    3. Service 1
    4. Ambience 1
    Arrived at 7:45pm for our reservation and walked out at 10:20pm before receiving dessert and wine pairing. The long wait times between courses were unreasonable, especially since most guests had left by then.

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  4. OpenTable Diner

    Exclusive

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 7 April 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Best we’ve had in a long time and brilliant service

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  5. MargaretY

    London

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on 7 April 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 5
    Delicious food and friendly, welcoming staff. Each dish was described to us which was great. Wonderful to try different delicious food. I would definitely recommend and would like to try the ‘Five Plates’ menu sometime. The only negative is the disabled toilet which was out the back in, what looked like, a storage area. It would be good if this was made more inviting and easier to access.

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  6. OpenTable Diner

    Exclusive

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 5 April 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Amazing food. Extremely tasty and the waiters were very knowledgeable and friendly. Ambience is great too. Overall, 10/10 experience. Would highly recommend.

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  7. ChristineF

    Brisbane

    2 reviews

    4.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 4 April 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Lovely food, servings were not huge but just enough to enjoy and not feel satisfied. Nothing left over. Service was really good, a great experience.

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  8. NadiaA

    London

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 3 April 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Our experience at Essa was wonderful! The service was excellent, and the food tasted exceptional. We tried the Five chefs Five plates menu, and we were not disappointed. We would definitely be back for more!

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  9. EvelynL

    Gold Coast

    13 reviews

    5.0

    13 reviews

    Dined on 27 March 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Essa continues to provide the excellent experience we’ve come to expect and this, five chefs, five plates menu idea is a welcome addition. Can’t wait to return for more!

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  10. OpenTable Diner

    Sunshine Coast

    7 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on 20 March 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Delicious food, great service, what more could you ask for, can't wait to go back.

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  11. LindaL

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 20 March 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Didn’t know what to expect but was delighted with the delicious food and service was excellent. Would highly recommend.

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  12. OpenTable Diner

    Tasmania

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 20 March 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Amazing food and great service, wine was delicious and well recommended

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  13. RyanH

    San Francisco

    7 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on 19 March 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great food and great experience. Loved the wine pairing with the set menu.

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  14. Hanni

    Sunshine Coast

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 12 March 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Went to Essa for my partners birthday dinner on a Tuesday and were absolutely blow away by this shining gem of a restaurant. We are by no means fancy food people, so it is a little nerve wracking to splurge on an extravagant degustation and wine pairing but it was absolutely 1000% worth it. Each dish was so complex and tuned to perfection, and the delicious wines paired with each course added something really special to each one. Portion sizes were perfect for my partner and I, we were worried it might of been a little too much wine but it was spot on, and everything came out at exactly the right time. Ambiance of the space was dark, moody and sexy. It smelled delightful as soon as you stepped into the space and even the music selection was great, an amazing vibe all around. Staff were also absolutely wonderful, kind and charismatic. We will absolutely be coming back when we'd like to get a special treat for ourselves, 10/10 stars in every aspect and cant wait to revisit.

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  15. ChrisS

    Brisbane

    7 reviews

    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on 28 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Swordfish, nectarine sauce finger lime, lemon amazing beef tartare oyster emulsion sensational by the time we got to the lamb and parsley oil and beetroot macadamia cream ...speechless Can't wait for our next visit! Well Done!

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  16. Sienna

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 28 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    We had the best time with delicious, creative and interesting food and lovely service. Catered to my dietaries even though they don't usually for the 5 plates on Wednesdays. Will definitely be going back ASAP with friends.

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  17. Liat

    Exclusive

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 27 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 2
    Delicious food and service. Although the restaurant is a little too dark.

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  18. Chomp

    Brisbane

    2 reviews

    3.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 24 February 2024

    1. Overall 3
    2. Food 2
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 4
    The restaurant we found to be in a good location with good options for parking around if you plan well enough. Can park near the Calile Hotel or in a secure parking roughly 10 mins away. The restaurant looked amazing with great ambiance and staff. We got the "Leave it to us" sample menu. Unfortunately for us we didn't enjoy the food and left feeling underwhelmed and a little robbed (quite dramatic but thats how we felt). Firstly the time it took to eat the 3/4 course meal was over two hours... we personally found that it took waaaaay too long in between courses. Sounds odd, but I got sore just sitting there waiting for things to come out. Secondly the portions were tiny, my partner who already doesn't eat a lot left hungry. Thirdly, we aren't sure it it just wasn't for us, but we didn't enjoy the food. My favourite dish was the sourdough with the nduja and my partners was the iced cucumbers and the side dish for the lamb. I feel if the best dish's are the veggies and the bread... that says something. My partner and I also found the meat not cooked enough... but that could be an us thing. However, the four people table next to us had pieces of meat put aside just like us. The place looked great and felt great plus the staff were amazing, however the main reason why you go wasn't. The food just wasn't worth 122pp and the time it took to get through that was (I feel) ridiculous. The review asks if we would recommend the restaurant to a friend... I definitely wouldn't.

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  19. TahliaA

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 24 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    What an great night we had. Absolutely delicious food, great wine & amazing service.

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  20. KateF

    Gold Coast

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 23 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Unreal experience at Essa! The wine, the service, the experience and the food! Couldn’t recommend it enough. Explored different foods with the “leave it to us” menu. We are not Brisbane locals so we were actually recommended to go and it did not disappoint.

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  21. Alex

    Melbourne

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on 17 February 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 4
    Great experience with my wife. Service, food, wine list, ambiance... All positive. It was very pleasant.

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  22. OpenTable Diner

    Brisbane

    1 review

    1.0

    1 review

    Dined on 17 February 2024

    1. Overall 1
    2. Food 1
    3. Service 3
    4. Ambience 1
    Very small food sizing and not very tasteful in my opinion, very overpriced for the amount of food and the quality.

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  23. ShrutiD

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 15 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Excellent food with great service. Portions and options were good, they were very accomodating to our dietary needs too

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  24. None

    Exclusive

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 13 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Excellent food. Enjoyed the ambience and outstanding service.

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  25. ClareG

    Brisbane

    10 reviews

    5.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on 11 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    The food at Essa was just wonderful - the most delicious porchetta I've ever had (and I've had a few). The music was excellent, and we enjoyed tapping our feet and singing along. I will definitely be going back. Great service from Adrian!

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  26. LukeC

    Exclusive

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 10 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Fantastic. Excellent food. Flawless experience from start to finish.

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  27. OpenTable Diner

    Brisbane

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on 10 February 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 3
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Lovely place to have dinner. They must have fantastic noise treatment because it’s quiet even when busy. Service was excellent and the food was well done and interesting. The only downside was that we left a bit hungry after spending $450 for two people on their set menu and extra bread.

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  28. DeborahB

    Exclusive

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 9 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Excellent from beginning to end. Sat at kitchen , would def recommend

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  29. Harvey

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 7 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    5 plates is a must. Very vibey atomosohere and excellent service. Loved it.

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  30. Dubs

    New York City

    6 reviews

    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on 4 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Loved the Sunday experience. Food was on point and the service just beautiful.

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  31. TerryM

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 4 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    It was a set menu but it was great. Delicious and varied.

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  32. MelR

    Brisbane

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on 3 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Essa... If you're looking for a dining experience, highly recommend Essa. Each and every dish has a story, a process, flavours relevant to the ingredients. I dare to you to pick a favorite. Staff were amazing, I'm sure they see many people pass thru, however they each made us feel special and welcomed. Essa will be one of our memorable dining experiences. Thank you.

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  33. AJNa

    Brisbane

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 3 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great food and great recommendation from our waiter. My partner loved the wine paring and the knowledge the gentleman shared about the wine as he poured. Definitely plan on coming back

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  34. Cavan

    Brisbane

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 2 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Front start to finish everything was fantastic! We had the set menu, food all came out at perfect intervals and all tasted amazing, couldn’t pick a highlight. Our server Chris helped us understand the intricacies of each dish and the Som pick out a nice bottle to go with it all.

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  35. Maxxy

    Brisbane

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on 1 February 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Bloody fantastic. Service was epic, food was delicious, music was great - 10/10!

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  36. AnnaS

    Brisbane

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 31 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    At Essa, every bite is a happy dance for your taste buds, and the service nurtures a continuous smile. Always a pleasure to dine here

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  37. Bianca

    Exclusive

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 31 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Brisbane’s best kept secret. An intimate space with great music, incredible service and amazing food. All of the staff clearly love their job and deliver exceptional customer service. The wine list is extensive and interesting and the food is a delicious journey.

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  38. Tobias

    Sydney

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 30 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Excellent Service, great wine matching and beautiful ambiance. Everything suited the refined food we enjoyed. Went on a Tuesday night and the restaurant was quiet - perfect. We will dine with you again!

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  39. NigelS

    Vancouver

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on 30 January 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 3
    Straightforward menu of unpretentious food prepared and cooked to a high standard. Down to earth staff who were attentive and efficient. Decent collection of foreign and domestic wines. We left full and happy.

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  40. SamM

    Sydney

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on 26 January 2024

    1. Overall 2
    2. Food 2
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 2
    Expensive, low quality, taste not good, food order poor,

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FAQs

Essa Restaurant is rated 4.7 stars by 634 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable.

Make a booking

2 people

19:30


Booked 11 times today
Experiences are available.
Google Map for Essa Restaurant

181 Robertson St, Fortitude Valley, AU-QLD 4006

Additional information

  • Area
    Fortitude Valley
  • Hours of Operation
    Lunch Fri, Sun 12:00 pm–4:00 pm Dinner Tue–Sat 5:00 pm–11:00 pm
  • Price
    $A41 to $A100
  • Cuisines
    Wine Bar, Modern Australian, Modern European
  • Dining style
    Casual Dining
  • Dress Code
    Casual Dress
  • Parking Details
    None
  • Payment Options
    AMEX, Mastercard, Visa
  • Additional
    Beer, Cocktails, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Privacy policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Impressum
  • Cookies and Interest-Based Ads
  • Cookie Preferences
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