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Barbecue Etiquette: The Do's and Don'ts of the Great Australian BBQ

How's your Barbecue Etiquette?

Australians are a pretty relaxed bunch. We like our sunshine and our no-hassle way of life but there are a few things we hold sacred. The great Australian barbeque is one of those sacred past times.

For many Australians, attending a backyard barbeque is second nature but some of our unfortunate brothers and sisters may not have had the opportunity. International visitors may also need a helping hand navigating the social etiquette of an Australian barbeque.

That’s why we have put together a list of do's and don'ts to make sure you don't act like a "downright drongo" at your next sausage sizzle.

Some BBQ Do's


It’s customary in Australian culture to "BYOB" or Bring Your Own Beer when invited to a barbeque. When everyone brings their own beverages, there is sure to be enough to go around. It's also considered polite to leave any unconsumed beers in the fridge for the host after the barbeque is over.

Compliments to the Chef

Although this is not exclusive to Australian barbeque culture, thanking the cook for their efforts in preparing your meal is always a good idea. If you have had better sausages in bread elsewhere, keep it to yourself and find something nice to say.

Bring a Plate

Quite often when you’re invited to a barbeque, the host will ask you to "bring a plate". This usually refers to a salad but it can also include dessert or pre-dinner snacks such as a platter. Bringing a Pavlova or a potato salad is considered good form.

BBQ Don'ts

Don't Touch an Australian's Barbeque without Being Asked to

If you have been invited to a mate’s house to partake in their barbeque, whatever you do, don't start telling them how they should be cooking the food. Each Australian likes to cook their barbeque their own way. If you start flipping burgers or messing around with the grilled onions without being asked to, you won't be invited back.

Very Informal Attire

You don't need to dress up for a BBQ. It's the one social event in Australia where you are expected to wear thongs and shorts. For women, any informal summer dress or comfortable outfit is considered appropriate. Barbeques are about relaxing with friends so shirts, ties and fancy hairdos are left at the door.

Phones Down

While it may be tempting to bust out your phone and check out the news feed during lulls in the conversation, it’s considered bad form. Barbeques are social occasions where conversation, storytelling and general catch ups on gossip are encouraged. Having your face buried in your device will make you the least social person there, so put it on silent and leave it in your pocket or bag.

For tips on the perfect gift for your barbeque host, visit our website. If you’re looking to host a BBQ of your own, come down to our local store on Bridge Road, Richmond, and ask for a recommendation.

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