• Wine glass icon
    2 sparklings / 3 whites / 3 ambers / 1 rose / 3 reds / 2-3 fancy (1 white, 1 red, 1 other via coravin)
  • Fork icon
    Casual Korean + Japanese. Small plates for sharing, baos, rice bowls & sandos for the hungry, sushi & sashimi. Heaps of GF options, vegan & vegetarian options.
  • Dollar icon
    Small plates range from $7-$19. Large meals/bowls $15-$25. Sushi/sashimi $11-$25.
  • Folding chair icon
    60-70 seater.

The lowdown

Even the most opulent suburbs can have funky, fun-focused wine bars, as proven by Zero Fox in Tennerife, Brisbane. A frequently changing list of wines and beers rewards curious return customers, who are also besotted with the kitchen’s Korean and Japanese array of morish share plates.

The regular’s tip

All-time best sellers from the menu include salmon aburi, soft shell crab baos, teriyaki salmon and chicken katsu curry – which have all consistently remained favourites for seven years.

Nestled in Brisbane’s affluent suburb of Tennerife, causal hole-in-the-wall bar and eatery Zero Fox is far from bourgeois. Designed by owners Lea Angeles and Shaun Fugill as a relaxed every-day watering hole with affordable options for locals, seating is spread along the long deck shaded by the adjacent London Woolstore. When they opened in 2016, they had very little experience in in bars, having previously worked at the café next door, but they knew what they liked. “Our goal was to create a casual venue for the locals – and it quickly became a well-oiled machine of non-stop smash hits,” says Lea.

Lea selects the wines, Shaun picks the 12 taps of craft beer and cider, plus bottled beers, and they deliberately rotate their choices frequently; one keg of each beer, 24 bottles of each wine, and two bottles of each gin. “When it’s gone, we move on. Our motto is that life’s too short to drink the same thing twice,” says Lea. “We embrace wines from smaller producers and try to build a wine list which caters for all tastes.” This translates to mostly minimal intervention or ‘natural’ Australian wine, with some imports, aiming to achieve balance in terms of colour, weight and texture – and everything is available by the glass, half bottle (carafe), or bottle.

Tastes of unfamiliar wines are welcome before placing an order at the counter, which sparks conversations. “For me, wine is best when it comes with a story, so I want our customers to have a conversation about the wine. If they’re not sure what this wine is on the list, we let them take it for a swirl before they buy. We encourage our customers to be curious and ask questions about the wine.”

Executive chef Kent Park leads an all-Korean kitchen staff, which translates to big flavour in an array of Korean and Japanese snacks and meals. The kitchen is open all day with no breaks, but queues often form at the front during lunch hour. “We don’t take reservations, and our customers like that informality. We’re walk-ins only and open all day, every day – and in mid-afternoons, you can often enjoy the whole breezy deck almost to yourself and watch life go by.”

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