Tasmania has a lot of food specialities. Truffles, cheese, leatherwood honey, wagyu beef, wild abalone, and Pacific oysters – they truly have it all. And nowhere is that better showcased than Launceston.
The small city of Launceston packs a punch when it comes to its thriving culinary scene, playing host to an array of food and drink experiences that are unlike anywhere else on the island.
If you find yourself in town with an empty stomach, you’re in luck. Whether you prefer classic restaurants, charming bars or quaint cafes, there’s plenty to discover. Here, we’ve rounded up the best restaurants in Launceston to visit.
Launceston is blessed in its proximity to abundant landscapes and farm fresh produce. Hit up Launceston’s bustling restaurant scene to experience the iconic Tasmanian produce fused with flavours from around the world. There’s plenty to explore from upscale establishments to laid-back local hotspots. We’ve singled out a few of the best Launceston restaurants below.
Stillwater has carved out a reputation as one of the best restaurants in Launceston. Perched on the water – within the four walls of an old flour mill – is Stillwater.
Gaze out onto the water while dining in luxury. (Image: Lily Moeller)
The menu errs on the upscale side, with fairly small portion sizes doing the rounds here. In saying that, what they lack in scale they deliver in flavour. Select from a generous array of snacks – small and large plates – each brimming with grandeur. Or eliminate the decision-making with the Chef’s five-course tasting menu. Available with or without a Tasmanian wine pairing.
Try the five-course tasting menu. (Image: Anjie Blair)
Alongside an array of finely tuned modern Tasmanian dishes, Stillwater’s events calendar is also worth perusing. The space often plays host to internationally recognised chefs and specialists for an array of sought-after experiences. And thanks to the recent opening of the attached accommodation property, Stillwater Seven, you can now sleep here too.
Address: 2 Bridge Road, Launceston, TAS
Stillwater is one of the best restaurants in Launceston. (Image: Lusy Productions)
2. Novaro’s Restaurant
Novaro’s has been a fine-dining staple in Launceston’s restaurant scene for over 21 years – and for good reason. This upscale eatery located in an Edwardian homestead fuses Italian cuisine with exquisite Tassie fresh produce. The result is a menu that will tantalise your tastebuds, with offerings that include Tasmanian wild mushrooms and veal & prosciutto ravioli. You can never really go wrong with a tiramisu, but Novaro manages to raise the bar on this Italian classic. The interior is warm and intimate, decorated with vintage Italian decor that will make you feel like you’ve been transported from Launceston straight into the heart of Lombardy.
Address: 28 Brisbane St, Launceston, TAS
3. Rupert & Hound
Following the conversion of an old shipyard and dry dock, Launceston gave birth to one of the state’s premiere waterfront public spaces. Seaport is its name.
If you find yourself strolling the boardwalk and taking in the views, you’re going to work up an appetite. Rupert & Hound is your next stop. Opened in 2021, this restaurant is an excellent upscale option, featuring an extensive array of locally-sourced options for both eat-in and takeaway. The menu is also vegan, vegetarian and dairy-free friendly. They’ve even perfected a gluten-free beer battered fish recipe – a huge selling point for those with celiac.
Address: 30 Seaport Blvd, Launceston, TAS
Seafood on the menu at Rupert & Hound
4. Josef Chromy Wines
A trip to Launceston without plugging Josef Chromy into your GPS is merely a missed opportunity. Known among the well-fed as one of the state’s best culinary spots, the cellar door and accompanying restaurant is the perfect place to indulge in a fresh, local lunch offering.
The charming timber cottage setting is only made more idyllic by the lake views nestled among the famed Tamar Valley. If you’d like to explore the surrounding vineyard and processing facility, book a ‘Behind The Label’ tour, or one of the other extensive experiences. If you’re interested in vineyard dining, we’ve also written about the best Tamar Valley vineyards and restaurants.
Address: 370 Relbia Rd, Relbia, TAS
Josef Chromy is the perfect place to indulge in a fresh, local lunch offering. (Image: Osborne Images)
5. Pickled Evenings
Pickled Evenings serve up modern, authentic Indian Cuisine with a Tasmanian twist, mixing fresh local ingredients with the flavours of Punjab. The restaurant has built a reputation as a favourite among travellers and locals due to its flavourful curries guaranteed to warm your belly on a chilly winter’s day. The lamb cutlets are one of the restaurant’s winning dishes— but vegetarians will have plenty to choose from with classic veggie offerings that include onion bhaji and potato and pea samosas. The interior is sleek yet friendly, dressed in warm timber flooring giving way to a warm and welcoming ambience.
Address: 135 George St, Launceston, TAS
6. Dynasty Chinese Restaurant
Could it be classified as an Australian regional city without an extravagantly decorated Chinese restaurant? Probably not. Dynasty invites you to come for the contemporary blend of classic Cantonese dishes, and stay for the extravagant, historical Asian architecture.
The restaurant hosts an extensive menu of all the staples, as well as some not-so-staple Australian additions for kids and fussy eaters.
Address: 95-97 Canning St, Launceston, TAS
Dynasty transports you to another place and time
Top bars and pubs
Tasmania is a world-class producer of wine, gin and whiskey. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that Launceston is teeming with trendy bars serving up the best of Tasmania’s produce coupled with great plates to pair. Check out the best bar and pub-style restaurants in Launceston where you can enjoy a tipple and a bite to eat.
7. Geronimo Aperitivo Bar & Restaurant
Located right on the outskirts of the action, you’ll recognise Geronimo Aperitivo Bar and Restaurant by the sheer number of people congregating to get a table. Taking a fresh approach to European tradition, the menu favours fresh Tasmanian products designed for sharing. While the menu consistently changes based on seasonality, I must say the seafood is certainly a hero. The pan-fried octopus and lentils were a trip highlight. Alongside the food, there’s also a curated beverage menu featuring all the local wines you came to town for.
Address: 186 Charles St, Launceston, TAS
Seafood is a hero at Geronimo Aperitivo Bar & Restaurant. (Image: Lusy Productions)
8. Saint John Craft Beer Bar
If you wander through Launceston’s main street on a Friday or Saturday night, you’ll wonder where all the people are. Turns out it’s here. Saint John is this town’s answer to a cosy, trendy ale bar that wouldn’t look out of place in a Melbourne laneway.
There’s something to satiate every appetite at Saint John Craft Beer Bar.
Food-wise, order one of the signature burgers over the bar. Fried chicken, beef, pork, vegan – there’s something to satiate every appetite. Wash it down with one of the 14 on-tap beers brewed in Tasmania, Australia and overseas. There’s also an extensive (170+) array of bottled beer, craft ciders, wines and top-shelf spirits.
Address: 133 St John St, Launceston, TAS
Saint John has Melbourne vibes.
9. Bar Two
Entering Bar Two will make you feel like you’ve stumbled upon a local secret. Inside, you’ll find a quiet, intimate atmosphere reminiscent of an upscale NYC bar. If you don’t have time to head up to Launceston’s famed Tamar Valley winery region— don’t sweat. You’ll find a great selection of local wine over at Bar Two, which has something to offer everyone from wine newbies to seasoned connoisseurs.
Bar Two has an atmosphere reminiscent of an upscale NYC bar.
The owners spent nearly a year personally meeting winemakers from the region and across Tasmania to curate the perfect wine list, which they’re now eager to share with patrons. Local products are a focal point here— with Tasmanian gins and whiskeys on offer, as well as tapas-style share plates that include local cheeses and freshly-shucked oysters.
Address: 47A Brisbane St, Launceston, TAS
Bar Two has curated the perfect wine list.
10. The Royal Oak Hotel
There’s no better way to end a day of exploring than a hearty pub feed and a cold pint. If you’re looking for a pub with character, The Royal Oak Hotel won’t disappoint. In this classic pub located next to City Park, you’ll find local musicians bringing the vibes on most weekends. Sit back and relax in the company of some local Launceston talent while the kitchen serves up hearty, elevated pub classics made from seasonal produce. Lastly, there’s an extensive range of Tasmanian craft beers to seal the deal.
Address: 14 Brisbane St, Launceston, TAS
‘The Oak’, as locals call it, has character and quality eats. (Image: Ness Vanderburgh)
Weaving country charms with urban coffee culture, hopping between the city’s many cafes is one of the best things to do in Launceston. We’ve rounded up an extensive list of our favourite Launceston cafes, but here are a few great options to get your caffeine fix or enjoy a leisurely brunch.
11. Bread & Butter Cafe
Combining Launceston’s quintessential quirkiness with urban hip, Bread + Butter Bakery is located inside a converted motorcycle storehouse. Head in for a great cup of coffee and sample some of their fresh-baked goods, made and served with butter from their onsite butter factory.
Bread & Butter Cafe and Bakery is Launceston’s trendiest brunch spot. (Image: Supplied)
The bakery and kitchen are also open-fronted, allowing patrons to take a peek inside to see where all the magic happens. As you watch trays emerge, loaded up with flaky croissants and jam-filled Danishes, you’ll certainly be craving something sweet.
Address: 70 Elizabeth St, Launceston, TAS
Bread + Butter serves up mouth-watering baked goods and pastries. (Image: Supplied)
12. Cafe Mondello
Cafe Mondello is a popular local hangout, and for good reason. The Cafe evokes the essence of Italy with its stylish yet cosy interior, decorated with vintage Italian posters. Menu highlights include the chorizo and prawn linguine for lunch, as well as classic all-day brunch items like smashed avo on toast. Although their hearty food menu is eclectic, Cafe Mondello’s Italian influence is evident in their focus on great quality coffee.
Address: 242 Charles St, Launceston, TAS
Relax at Cafe Mondello. (Image: Lusy Productions)
13. Mad Apple Cafe
Mad Apple is one of the best veggie/vegan cafes on the Apple Isle. Serving up a flurry of flavours with their Asian-inspired menu made from fresh Tassie produce, Mad Apple Cafe is the perfect place to head to if you’re keen on a healthy (yet delicious) brunch. The nasi goreng is a must-try, and the dahl is the perfect choice to warm you up on a chilly day. Sip on a cup of chai or coffee in the sunlit space and take a moment to admire the adorable herb garden outside.
Address: 122 St John St, Launceston, TAS
Read our ultimate travel guide to Launceston for more tips, guides and itineraries.