Our favourite pub in Gympie, The Phoenix Hotel, has returned to sparkling form after its recent change of ownership. It has undergone major renovations and now I am delighted to report the interior design matches the food, both being excellent! The sleek black clubby lounge bar is a lovely place to chill out with a drink and I can hardly wait to enjoy lunch or an early evening drink on the comfortable lounge chairs on the spacious back deck designed to catch the breeze. I really have to give them a 10/10 for their stunning vision.
I am not a fan of pokies, or “one arm bandits” as my Dad liked to call them, but clearly there are quite a few people who do enjoy playing them, so with this in mind The Phoenix has turned the under-used conference room into a gaming room. We didn’t go in but looked in through the large windows and it does look a gamblers/sports fans dream with large TV screens showing races, a lovely bar area and lots of poker machines. The biggest plus of all this for me is, it is well away from the dining area and beautiful outside verandah bar which can remain nice and quiet.
Enough about the design, the food is the reason we love this place so much. The menu has something for everyone, pizzas, fish, curries and our personal favourite the steaks and the beer battered chips. As James and I both like our steaks differently cooked (he is a rare man and I am a well done girl) cooking steak at home is a minefield (a reason we don’t offer steaks on our dinner menu at Lagoon Pocket!) so we always try to eat them when we are out. There is a specials board and an excellent wine list, we take full credit for the best NZ Sauvignon Blanc we have come across, “Squealing Pig” being on this list, it was removed by the new owners and we moaned so much to Ben, the bar manager the next time we visited he proudly told us it was back, so for a while there we always had to order the Squealer just to prove a point to Ben!
The Phoenix is open 7 nights a week which is wonderful for a small town like Gympie where many places are closed on Sunday and Monday. They are also open for lunch and we are already planning to meet friends for lunch on that glorious back verandah!