It’s the race that stops a nation – and if you’re lucky – your work day. Melbourne Cup is fast upon us, and as much as we love champagne and horse races, standing trackside with the masses can leave something to be desired. Luckily, we’ve got the hook up on where you can drink up, feast and party into the night – that’s what mid-week sick days are for right?
Darling & Co | Paddington
Forget sports luxe, it might be Melbourne Cup but Darling & Co. are all about Island Luxe. Step away from the racecourse and into the darling of Paddington with two packages: a cocktail and canape party (hello risotto station?) or a 3-course seafood lunch. With entertainment from DJ Tom Gazal and all-inclusive drink packages including Veuve champagne, premium wines, local and craft beer and spring cocktails including Tanqueray Spritz and Espresso Martinis. From $179pp phone (07) 3367 9800 for bookings!
Ristorante La Famiglia | Woolloongabba
Join the famiglia for an Italian style Melbourne Cup party! Italians sure know how to feast – so prepare yourself for three decadent courses. Choose from assaggini like calamari and baked zucchini, perfetto primi of risotto and ragu, and delightful desserts including tiramisu and bomboloni. We recommend sitting next to your work bestie so you can order alternate and try it all! Kick back with a glass of prosecco on arrival, sweeps and get ready to win some prizes. Magnifico! $89pp. Book on (07) 3391 1045.
Riverbar + Kitchen | CBD
How does FREE succulent spit-roasted pig sound? Too good to be true? Not at Riverbar + Kitchen! The first 200 guests through the doors will receive free BBQ, you just have to register for your ticket! With views of both the majestic Brisbane river AND the main event being shown on the big screen it’s the place to be. Open all day get in quick for cold beers, cocktails and entertainment including sweeps and fashions on the field. Register here!
Woolly Mammoth | Fortitude Valley
Gallop into Woolly Mammoth for the best Melbourne Cup you’ve had in an ice age! With the main event featured on screens across the entire Alehouse, and two dining options available from $79pp, race in now to secure your seat!
Choose from the 2-course feasting table lunch with grilled pizza bread, blackened lamb ribs and grilled field mushrooms or the mammoth buffet with mammoth meat or vegetarian boards and pizzas including spiced lamb and braised beef. Both packages include a 3-hour beverage package including tap beers and house wines. Don’t miss out, book in here.
Cloudland | Fortitude Valley
Never one to be outdone, Cloudland is getting into the spirt of Melbourne Cup with two deluxe soirees. Cocktails and canapes get your heart racing? Madame Hedges Cocktail Party has your name all over it. At $99pp enjoy a selection of delicious canapes, French bubbles, beers, wine and the signature Cloudland Cocktail.
Heels sinking into the turf? Take a seat at the Rainbow Room Gala Luncheon. With a 3-course lunch and a 3.5 hour drinks package including Mumm champagne, beer and wine – you’re on to a winner at $195pp. Book your tickets here .
Byblos | Portside
You’ll forget that you’re at Portside with the lush, botanical affair waiting for you at Byblos. Celebrate in style with a decadent food and beverage package, including a three-course banquet and premium cocktails and spirits plus charity sweepstakes, a photo booth and all-day entertainment. To book visit the website or email [email protected]
Sofitel | CBD
Champagne cocktail party, seafood buffet luncheon and pop up bars – Melbourne Cup at the Sofitel has it all.
Enjoy a Pimms cocktail on arrival to Thyme2 for their luxurious luncheon before feasting on an array of market fresh seafood, gourmet savoury dishes and spectacular dessert buffet. Feeling especially elegant? You can’t look past the Birdcage cocktail party in the Cuvee Lounge Bar. Enjoy gorgeous canapes, a decadent dessert buffet and beverage package including Mumm Cordon Rouge along with live music and fashions on the field
For a true Melbourne Cup experience, step into the ‘Punters Den’ with TAB kiosk and TV screens broadcasting live from Melbourne. Indulge in pork or beef sliders and a knock back a refreshing Heineken from the Pop Up Bar. More about Pimms than punters? Relax in the Grand Lobby with Pimms cocktails and maganifique people watching. Packages from $99, phone 07 3835 3535 or visit http://www.sofitelbrisbane.com.au/en/melbourne-cup.html to book!
Pig ‘n’ Whistle | Various Locations
Missing Melbourne Cup is a crime! We recommend calling in sick and head to the Pig ‘n‘ Whistle! For an unforgettable High Tea experience head to Indooroopilly. Watch the main event on the big screen as you enjoy delicious bites and a three-hour drinks package. Phone (07) 3878 8899 to book.
For canapes, spirits, James Squire beers and Muum you can’t look past the West End location. Forget about office politics and focus on best dressed with sweeps and prizes. At just $99pp, enjoy a three-hour beverage and canapé package. Tickets available here.
Treasury | CBD
What better place to get the odds in your favour than at the casino? Gather for an unforgettable afternoon of cup day indulgence with premium wines and beer, champagne, a decadent high tea and fashions on the field. With two stunning venues hosting, enjoy Moët & Chandon and canapes at The Kitty, or High Tea at Treasury Hotel. For the perfect ending to your Melbourne Cup little darlin’, come riding on the horses with Daryl Braithwaite at the after-party at 5pm. Book now to avoid disappointment.
NICKEL KITCHEN & BAR | Fortitude Valley
There are few things we love more than a five-course luncheon, except maybe when it’s paired with bottomless drinks! Enjoy coffin bay oysters, beetroot cured kingfish and charred mango washed down with Veuve Clincquot and cocktails. Accompanied by fashions on the field, a live broadcast of the main event and sweepstakes for $195pp, race in before they sell out! Book here.
THE NEW INCHCOLM HOTEL| SPRING HILL
There ain’t no party like an Inchcolm Hotel Melbourne Cup party! Enjoy a 3-hour beverage package and a decadent three-course banquet by Head Chef Anthony Hales from $169pp. With fashion by Sacha Drake, lucky door prizes and sweeps – you’re not going to want to leave, which is convenient since there are luxurious rooms just upstairs. Book now to avoid disappointment on (07) 3226 8888
KENNIGO SOCIAL HOUSE | SPRING HILL
Nestled away at the foot of Spring Hill, Kennigo Social House is putting on a soiree for the ages. Enjoy welcome drinks in the beautiful courtyard before tucking into a four course share-style feast: think sweet potato scallops, house cured salmon, lamb koftas and peri peri chicken. With tickets just $65pp, make sure you’re first out the gate to get your hands on them. Book here.
THE GREEK CLUB | SOUTH BRISBANE
Feel like your Melbourne Cup needs some more Opa!? Look no further than The Greek Club. Indulge in a Greek a la carte menu on the sun kissed terrace of Odyssey Taverna Café and Bar. With sweeps and Fashion on the Field prizes, get ready for an odyssey to a good time. Phone (07) 3844 1166 to book!
THE FOX | SOUTH BRISBANE
Forget about the horses, we’re all about who is looking foxy! Dress to impress and choose from three premium food and beverage packages. Our pick? Head to the Mane Stage on the rooftop bar and enjoy a three hour premium drinks package, plus a garden lunch plate. Enjoy the afternoon overlooking the Brisbane river with DJ’s and MC’s to keep you entertained. More about betting than bubbles? TAB facilities throughout the venue have you covered. Packages from $46pp, book your place now!
VICTORIA PARK | KELVIN GROVE
Whether you’re a punter, a fashionista or a foodie – race into Victoria Park. Guests will be treated to a prize-worthy four course Mediterranean luncheon in the glamorous Marquee room. Relax with a four-hour beverage package as you enjoy live music entertainment, sweeps and raffles. Tickets are $149pp, book now on (07) 3252 0666
CUTTY SARK | TENERIFFE
If the thought of battling drunk revellers trackside holds about as much appeal as a trip to the dentist, Cutty Sark have just the sophisticated Melbourne Cup experience you’ve been dreaming of. With a three-course lunch, oysters and bubbles and a stunning water view for $95pp it’s the perfect way to relax for an afternoon. Book in now on (07) 3257 2266
Whether you’ve got your eye on some fillies (horses or otherwise), keen to show off that hot new dress or just want to enjoy an afternoon of bubbles, betting and banquets – however you celebrate Melbourne Cup – do it in style.
Words by Emma Callaghan