The Blue Door on 5th

There’s something very special behind the blue doors on 5th Avenue Palm Beach. In the former home of Pablo Pablo, owner/chef Dylan Cashman has taken up residence. He’s intent on raising the bar on Gold Coast cuisine, offering food that’s locally sourced, excitingly fresh, innovative and theatrical. It’s all that and more!

Having worked at Sydney’s Pilu, Cottage Point Inn, the iconic Sean’s Panaroma and, closer to home, Fins and Paper Daisy, Cashman has continued his move north, finally bringing his superb cuisine to the Gold Coast. We spoke to him about why he chose the coast to open his first restaurant:

“The Gold Coast is now a major growth area for Australia with so many people working here,” he tells us. “We wanted to open a Melbourne-style city restaurant. We see so many people moving up to the Coast and we wanted to be part of that changing culture.

I grew up in Crescent Head and have worked between Byron Bay and Sydney. The Tweed Coast has always felt like home to me. Besides, growing up surfing, there’s no better place to be than here!”

The former Spanish restaurant is now white, its fresh uncluttered space providing a blank canvas to show off Dylan’s extraordinary cuisine. It’s not the venue which makes this experience special, but the quality and freshness of this expertly sourced food, its innovative presentation and the way the diner is asked to participate in the meal making The Blue Door a superior dining experience.

“We work very closely with several farmers – Greg Foster in the Tweed (who also sources from the organic markets in Brisbane for us), Freeman’s Organics, Buck’s Farm in Chillingham and Palmers Farm in Cudgen. Although we use about 90% organic produce, essentially, it’s about getting the best we can buy,” Dylan says.

A board on the restaurant wall outlines the evening’s food bowl rather than the menu, as many would expect, produce defining menu rather than the other way around.

“We change menu items every week or fortnight, depending on crops. I might ask for one particular vegetable and the farmer says he’s got fabulous beetroot and cabbage, so that’s what we get – the best produce. We work with what’s flourishing and what grows here.

Vegetables are like people. They get tired when they fly around the world. We don’t need to eat asparagus from Peru. We can choose to eat something else that’s local.

We source buffalo milk from a farm in Kempsey, and one of our beers on tap from Bucket Brewery, because it’s the best black beer I’ve ever tasted. We work with whole animals whenever we can, such as suckling pigs from a farm in the Macleay Valley.”

Superlatives. There aren’t enough to describe Dylan’s food sourcing, but it doesn’t stop there… Service, presentation, and the well-curated wine list also match the food quality.

We begin our meal with house-made bread and butter. The starter for our sourdough is three years old, brought back from Germany, Dylan tells us. It’s given the same care and attention as everything else, all made in house: brioche, lavosh, ice cream and sauces.

Served with a board of four salts, we’re asked to grate and taste the different salts with the unsalted butter and bread, from the mild pink salt of Bolivia to peppery volcanic-tasting black Indian salt.  It’s the beginning of our participation in the meal, an interaction with the food that is as much about education as it is about eating.

Campfire fish is presented hangi-like in a bowl of sand, twigs and stone, its foil covering unwrapped at the table. There’s dashi broth to pour over the coal-cooked Ballina swordfish and prawns seafood. It’s participatory dining, served with grace and knowledge, yet all the hard work has been done in the kitchen.

There’s no doubting Dylan’s immense skill, our crescent of free range Glasshouse Mountain chicken, cooked sous vide with parsnip purée, roasted Jerusalem artichokes, and chive oil one of the most stunning chicken dish we’ve ever tasted.

Likewise, the side of Brussel sprouts contains a myriad of complex textures and taste. Cooked three ways, the hearts sous vide with black tahini and caramelised yoghurt, the inner leaves poached, and outer leaves fried crisp with pickled chilli, toasted buckwheat, sunflower seeds and lemon myrtle, it’s a stunning dish; one of many vegetarian dishes that Dylan has presented at a banquet.

Dylan contends that diners need to be more educated about their food, where it’s from and how fresh it is. Why do we settle for second rate food at high prices, he asks, when for little more we can enjoy a superior experience?

“I didn’t go to fine dining when I was growing up, but they’re the times you remember, the times you talk about.

To me, The Blue Door isn’t just a special occasion restaurant. I see it as the place you can dine once a fortnight. People put us up there for the service, but to me it’s about the food as well. All meals are priced under $40. You get what you pay for. Here you can have the best steak, or go somewhere else nearby and pay almost the same amount for a low grade cut of meat.

We have many return customers. Once they’ve dined here they come back,” he says. We already have!

Technique, imagination, commitment and dedication all add up to The Blue Door on 5th. Hardly surprising that this restaurant was recently picked by Anthony Huckstep (Delicious) as the best new restaurant in Queensland.

2, 5th Avenue, Palm Beach Ph: 0456 194 552

Dinner: Tues – Sat 5pm – late; Brunch: Sat – Sun 11.30am –

Note: On one occasion, Good Food Gold Coast dined as guests of the establishment.




The Blue Door on 5th Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato



Degustation Dinner Licensed Lunch Main course $25 to $40 Modern Australian Palm Beach Restaurants Seafood Vegan friendly Vegetarian , , , ,

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Please feel free to contact Good Food Gold Coast at ABN : 76 400 146 716