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Sydney City guide: 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money

Not to rub it in, but I’m feeling pretty refreshed (and even a little tanned!) after a nice holiday in Australia for the last couple weeks. Normally on a trip all the way out to Australia I’ll always spend a good amount of time with my first city love, Melbourne but this time I cheated and explored what sunny Sydney had to offer.

They say Melbourne is the intellectual brunette with all her cultural activities and meandering laneways that force you to really get to know her and Sydney is the beautiful blonde with all her dazzling natural beauty, iconic beaches and waterfronts that are obvious and right there for everyone to see and admire. But there’s more to Sydney than her gorgeous looks – she can cook, and damn well too.

Here’s a guide that’ll blow your gastronomic mind (the same way it did mine) and make your trip to Sydney one to remember.

Sydney City guide - 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Click on the map to access the city guide in Google Maps

SYDNEY RESTAURANT HIT LIST

 

BILLS, DARLINGHURST

A trip to Sydney would not be the same without a trip to Bill Granger’s restaurant, Bills in Darlinghurst. Bills is the home of the most famous scrambled eggs in dare I say it, Australia. Everything on the menu here is simple, well cooked with Bill’s signature freshness.

Best Bit: The scrambled eggs – they are fluffy, buttery and smooth like you’ve never tasted before. You can also pick up a (hopefully signed!) copy of one of his cookbooks to try recreating them at home.

http://www.bills.com.au/

Bills Darlinghurst | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Inside Bills Darlinghurst – Photo: Concrete Playground

Bills Scrambled Eggs | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Bills Scrambled Eggs

 

THE GROUNDS OF ALEXANDRIA, ALEXANDRIA

They don’t call it “The Grounds” for nothing – it’s a veritable complex of food, coffee, horticulture, floristry and landscape design. How many cafés have you been to that have a coffee research and training centre, grow their own herbs and veggies in the gardens, have an in-house bakery AND keep baby farm animals?

Best Bit: The Breakfast Board is the breakfast of champions.

http://groundsroasters.com/

The Grounds of Alexandia | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

KITCHEN BY MIKE, ROSEBERY

Not far from The Grounds of Alexandria is another restaurant/concept store but this time in a warehouse complex that is breathtakingly huge. The canteen style restaurant serves up quality food prepared with ridiculously fresh ingredients – think beetroot, freekah, goats cheese and mint salad with a bacon and gruyere quiche. Be warned that lunch starts serving at 12pm and everyone gets there on time – if you’re not on time you’ll be lining up a while!

Best Bit: Head there early and give yourself a good hour to check out the incredibly curated Koskela home store, which takes up most of the warehouse space. The gorgeous space is filled with amazing light and Australian designed furniture, art, artisan home wares and utensils as well as a children’s area – think Scandinavian whimsy meets Brooklyn craftiness.

http://kitchenbymike.com.au/
http://www.koskela.com.au/

Kitchen by Mike | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Koskela Store | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Koskela Store – Photo: Claudia Stephenson.

Koskela Store | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Colour Assembly Exhibition at Koskela by artist Beci Orpin. Photo: Beci Orpin

THE COMMONS, DARLINGHURST

The kind of spot you can hit on a warm Sunday afternoon and stay well into the night grazing on charcuterie, calamari and chardonnay. You won’t know where the time went once it’s time to head downstairs into the basement bar 🙂

Best Bit: The Sunday afternoon garden party vibe is completed with an Aperol Spritz.

http://thecommons.com.au/

The Commons | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Charcuterie & calamari @ The Commons Sydney

 

GNOME, SURRY HILLS

After strolling Surry Hills you’ll need a little caffeine hit to keep you perky enough to visit all of the boutiques on your list. Situated right on Crown Street is Gnome – the perfect spot to recharge with a short macchiato and inadvertently overhear an interesting conversation between some cool looking local DJs planning their European tours.

Best Bit: They know how to make good coffee. The consistency of the macchiato is creamy all the way to the end and never ever watery.

https://www.facebook.com/GnomeEspressoandWineBar

Gnome Espresso | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Short Macchiato @ Gnome Espresso

THREE BLUE DUCKS, BRONTE

Sydney food at its very best – there’s something about this city that does food with an Asian twist with such finesse and this spot is no different. Three Blue Ducks is known equally for its amazing fusion food as it is for its two very handsome surfer/chef/gardening owners – either way, it’s very much worth the visit 🙂

Best Bit: Visiting the back garden where they grow all the fresh herbs and veggies.

http://www.threeblueducks.com/

Three Blue Ducks | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Inside Three Blue Ducks – Photo: Daniel Boud

Three Blue Ducks Veggie Garden | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Three Blue Ducks Veggie Garden

MS G’S POTTS POINT

Ms G’s is that cool bar where Vietnam and Malaysia meet up with Sydney. Unfussy pan-Asian food with big flavours and a little edge via graffiti-ed walls and pink neon signage.

Best Bit: Who doesn’t love a slider let alone a banh mi slider?

http://merivale.com.au/msgs/

Ms G's | Sydney City guide: 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Outside Ms G’s – Photo: Akin Creative

NOM, DARLINGHURST

A hole in the wall Japanese Izakaya that I probably wouldn’t tell you about if I lived in Sydney for fear of not being able to get a seat. Run by a mother and daughter team from Tokyo and frequented by Japanese locals – its as authentic as you can get.

Best Bit: Japanese potato salad with fish eggs on top – OMG

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nom/107180352780547

Gyoza | Sydney City guide: 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money |meltingbutter.com

Gyoza – Photo: Marc Matsumoto

THE FISH SHOP, POTTS POINT

I’ve had a fish and chips craving for over a year now (the Americans just can’t seem to get it right). It was finally satisfied at The Fish Shop. Amazingly fresh fish fried just enough for that light crunch in your mouth, thick hand cut chips, gourmet tartar sauce and a slice of lemon (and maybe a side of mushy peas) is all you need to walk out with the look of satisfaction on your face.

Best Bit: You’ll start out with the intention to share your fish and chips and market menu item with your dining buddy but neither of you will want to share in the end.

http://merivale.com.au/thefishshop

The Fish Shop | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

Inside The Fish Shop – Photo: Anthony Reginato

Fish and Chips | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money |meltingbutter.com

Fish and Chips @ The Fish Shop

HOUSE, SURRY HILLS

North Eastern Thai food from the same people who brought Sydney-siders Spice I Am (arguably the most famous Thai restaurant in the city) but this time, no queue to go with it.

Best Bit: Jackfruit salad and green curry is done how you’d expect it to be done in Thailand.

http://www.spiceiam.com/house-surry-hills

House Surry Hills | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com

The kitchen at House – Photo: Ken Hughes-Parry

REUBEN HILLS, SURRY HILLS

Reuben Hills has all the right cred – voted best coffee by the Sydney Morning Herald, owners from respected coffee stock in Sydney and a decided passion for coffee that you can see and feel as soon as you walk in and take note of all of the high-tech Barista contraptions.

Best Bit: The space – unassuming Surry Hills shop at the front, open garage roller door with cool light installation and exposed brick walls at the back.

http://reubenhills.com.au/

Rueben Hills | Sydney City guide- 11 restaurants that give Melbourne a run for her money | meltingbutter.com


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  1. […] SYDNEY CITY GUIDE: 11 RESTAURANTS THAT GIVE MELBOURNE A RUN FOR HER MONEY […]

  2. […] I checked out Ms G’s, a hip pan-Asian restaurant in Potts Point. It instantly took a spot in our Sydney restaurant guide and also became the subject of my Vietnamese food obsessions. You see, the food at Ms G’s is my […]



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