Broadbeach Waters’ latest restaurant is a literal dream come true for its owners Nenad Miljkovic and Sandra Ostojic. In November 2019, the couple took over the lease of the site formerly occupied by the Society of Florida (and most recently the Trembling Cup), renaming it Sandrino Kitchen & Bar (literally meaning in Serbian ‘Sandra’s Kitchen & Bar’).
“Over the last 24 years, three different fortune tellers told me that I would one day own a successful restaurant with a lot of water around it,” Nenad tells me, “and here we are!”
One of a small cluster of shops tucked away in Florida Gardens, Sandrino is an ambient space in grey stone and tiles fronting a quiet tree-lined suburban street. With a large servery bar, huge bifold windows open to catch the breeze and an enclosed back courtyard, the venue is equally suitable for a quiet chat over drinks or an intimate dinner, joining friends to watch Eurovision or a soccer match, or celebrating a special occasion or wedding.
Although the venue was purchased as a café, it didn’t take the new owners long to realise that there was a gap in the dining market for South-Eastern European restaurants, a space that due to their heritage and passion for Balkan food they were uniquely suited to fill.
“There is no Balkan restaurant on the Gold Coast,” Nenad says. “Australians know something about Balkan people, such as Nikola Tesla (one of the greatest inventors of all time) or Novak Djokovic (currently ranked world No. 1 in the world in men’s singles tennis), they may have visited the Dalmatian coast in a cruise ship, but they know little about Balkan food. This is our chance to show off our cuisine to the Gold Coast.”
So Nenad and Sandra, with their family’s help (including Sandra’s father and her grandmother, Rose assisting in the kitchen), relaunched Sandrino in January 2020, their new dinner menu inspired by South-Eastern European flavours.
A great way to enjoy a meal at Sandrino is to relax, take in the casual vibe and indulge in a share platter or ‘Mesano Meso’ containing a mixed grill platter of different meats (specially made cevapi – skinless sausages, pljeskavica – meat patties, raznjici – skewers, smoked Serbian sausage and grilled chicken), all embued wih the smokiness of char grill, served with lepinja (flatbread), kajmak (Serbian-style cream cheese) and potato or cabbage salad ($64.90 for a meal for 2 – 3 people). A side of ajvar (red capsicum relish) is also imperative. Watch out for winter specials coming up, such as goulash.
As the venue is licensed, this is also the place to start your meal with one of six different flavoured Serbian brandies, enjoyed straight or on ice, followed by Serbian beers or wine with your dinner, the celebratory atmosphere helped along by traditional dancers on some weekend nights.
And talking celebrations, Nenad and Sandra recently hosted their own wedding feast in their restaurant, in true Balkan style. Another dream come true.
1/1 Naranga Avenue, Broadbeach Waters Ph: 07 5570 1645
Open: Thurs – Sunday 5:30pm to 10:30pm.
NOTE: Good Food Gold Coast dined as a guest of Sandrino Kitchen & Bar.