Sydney Food And Drink
Sydney is home to incredible waterfront dining; some of the best restaurants in the world; and hidden gems where you can taste authentic food from every nationality. Pull out the credit card and treat yourself to a first-class feast at one of the finest; after all, you only live once.
When it comes to finding special locales for a leisurely drink in Sydney, you won't be left high and dry on that front either. Whether your preferred tipple is grape or grain, shaken or stirred, or muddled and mashed, Sydney has got thirst-quenching covered. From basement bars, to places for a rooftop rendezvous, to vino bars and craft breweries, there’s oodles of sophisticated, kitsch and historic places to whet your whistle.
Bennelong at the Sydney Opera House is a highlight of any visit to Sydney. Sitting beneath the ‘sails’ looking over Sydney Harbour - how could anyone ignore one of Australia’s greatest views? After a multi-million-dollar revamp, chef Peter Gilmore now reigns over this Sydney icon.
Currently ranked #58 on The World's Best Restaurants list, across the harbour at the Overseas Passenger Terminal (with the best views of the Opera House), Peter Gilmore also oversees the award-winning state-of-the-art menu here. Make sure to leave room for the legendary ‘Snow Egg’ dessert.
The Bridge Room
Tucked away in a 1930s heritage building behind Circular Quay, this place has won a swag of awards since it opened, including recently Restaurant of the Year and three hats in the 2016 Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide. Exceptional food amongst elegant mid-century decor.
If you haven’t been to Tetsuya’s at least once, you’ve missed out on one of Australia’s most extraordinary dining experiences. Chef Tetsuya Wakuda’s French-Japanese fusion dishes are nothing short of masterpieces. The heritage-listed building; with Japanese-inspired furnishings and chef Tetsuya's eclectic art collection, are too.
Botanic Gardens Restaurant
Set amongst the surrounds of Sydney’s Royal Botanic Gardens, the Botanic Gardens Restaurant is like dining in a tropical rainforest. The modern Australian menu, like the gardens, changes with the seasons, but sitting on the wisteria covered terrace on a warm summer day is glorious.
The Bather’s Pavillion
Looking out over Balmoral Beach, the Bather’s Pavillion is a favourite of the fashionable Mosman set. Serge Dansereau’s food is as sublime as the setting, day or night. As well as the breezy restaurant, there’s a café open for breakfast, or cocktails by the beach.
Lord Nelson Brewery
Claiming the title of Australia’s oldest pub brewery, this long-time resident of the historic Rocks precinct is a must for a drink, not only for the 1800s architecture and history, but for the ales brewed on the premises; and its 350-plus bottle wine list.
Australian Heritage Hotel
The century-old Australian Heritage Hotel is a favourite watering hole for locals and a great spot to spend time sipping pints and sharing one of their signature pizzas, such as pepper kangaroo or saltwater crocodile. It still has many of its original 19th century features.
The Wine Library
The Wine Library, in stylish Woollahra, stocks more than 500 wines from around the world, best enjoyed by the glass with its accompanying menu of wine-friendly food. It’s quite an education, with the helpful staff always willing to provide tasting notes in an unintimidating way.
Sydney doesn't have a lot of rooftop bars, but of the few, The Glenmore in The Rocks has the best views of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House. It’s the place to be on a hot summer night, with a refreshing drink in hand.
In the top thirty of the Australian Bar Awards World’s 50 Best Bars for three years running, this shoe-box sized attic bar near Circular Quay specialises in cocktails using the freshest seasonal fruit; with Australian beers, world-wide whiskies, and biodynamic wines amongst its extensive list.
Gin & It
Set inside a shipping container, the newest pop-up bar to grace Wulugul Walk in Barangaroo specializes in gin, bragging a 180-strong selection behind the bar, including Gin 1495, recreated from a 500-year-old recipe. There's also a comprehensive wine list, plus beers for those who prefer.