A bustling casual restaurant with modern Vietnamese flavours paired with cutting-edge Australian wine.
The regular’s tip
Opt for the “feed me” menu and let Shelly match it with her top wine picks
Burleigh Heads has become a melting pot of great bars, restaurants and wine-focused venues. Shelly Greaves settled amongst the action on the Gold Coast in 2016, when she opened her fresh-faced eatery, Jimmy Wah’s. If the name sounds familiar, perhaps the film Good Morning Vietnam rings a bell, where the character Jimmy greets Robin Williams with his cheeky smile. Expect no less from Shelly– she will be there to welcome you once you step through their large, red door.
Guests are spread out over street dining and an open-air room in this breezy coastal spot. Shelly is no stranger to the locals after having cemented herself in the community with her previous venue Verve, as well as time spent working in both Hellenika Nobby Beach and The Fish House. But her love of wine brought her back to owning her own haunt. Like the backstory would suggest, Jimmy’s is a restaurant of modern Vietnamese food with great wines, along with a playlist of 70s music that keeps the vibes high. It has been busy since day dot.
Shelly executes the perfect balance of restraint and thoughtfulness with her list, offering her broad demographic something of familiarity yet quality. On the other hand, there are options for those in the mood for adventuring into the unknown of alternative and natural drops. Ultimately, the wines are there to enhance the sweet, spiced and fresh characters of the food. You’ll find nearly 40 food-friendly wines by the glass, a deftly executed cellar list, and a popular selection of chilled reds which, even in ‘winter’, are a welcome addition to the Gold Coast climate.
Regional produce influences the South-East Asian dishes, which are designed to be shared amongst the table, giving guests the opportunity to sample as many of the bright flavours as possible. There is also a “Feed Me” menu with the option for Shelly to effortlessly match with her favourite wines of the moment. After five years of unwavering popularity, Jimmy Wah’s has very much enhanced the colourful offering in Burleigh Heads.