The city of Sydney is home to a wide range of world-class restaurants, but venture north of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and you’ll find quality dining establishments that are every bit as good. Whether you’re craving pizza, pasta, curry, sashimi, steak, tagine or a big plate of cheese, here are the 10 best places to grab a meal in North Sydney.
Restaurant, Tapas, $$$
Interior | Courtesy of Street Market Asian Tapas
The cozy, comfortable decor of this Kirribilli gem provides the perfect surrounds to nestle in for an evening of Asian-style tapas. The menu is split into cold, hot and charcoal share plates, plus yum cha and main options covering everywhere from China and Japan to Vietnam and the Philippines. Street Market also has a second location on Willoughby Road in Crows Nest.
Take a culinary trip to Europe for an authentic trattoria dining experience in the heart of Mosman. The Fourth Village Providore Restaurant dishes up breakfast, lunch and dinner — including a long-list of wood-fired pizzas — in a casual local marketplace atmosphere, featuring a vibrant providore brimming with carefully selected local and imported produce.
Ask the long line of regulars queuing up outside this unassuming Crows Nest eatery and they’ll tell you they’re waiting to feast on Sydney’s best ramen. Located in a small, nondescript orange building next to a school on the leafy Lower North Shore, Ryo’s is all about the noodle broth — the decor is simple, the venue is tiny, the service is rapid but the meals are mouthwatering.
This two-storey heritage-listed corner terrace on the vibrant Blues Point Road was transformed into a little slice of Morocco in December 2014, with the scent of scrumptious, spicy Moorish cuisine lingering in the air. It’s a short walk towards the harbour from North Sydney to dine out on some of the city’s finest North African cuisine at Moorish Blue, a modern eatery that puts a contemporary twist on Tunisian, Moroccan and Spanish classics.
There isn’t a restaurant in Australia that boasts better beach views than this Balmoral institution, a historic 1920s pavilion with stylish modern interiors perched right on the sand. Choose between the Bathers’ Pavilion’s sunny cafe — serving Mediterranean-style breakfast, lunch and dinner — and the upscale restaurant, with a seasonal menu that’s curated as carefully as the lengthy wine list.
Located in the middle of North Sydney’s bustling business district is a venue that describes itself as “Australia’s first authentic, high-quality Japanese BBQ restaurant”. Rengaya has been grilling traditional yakiniku barbecue since 1993, grilling the finest Japanese black cattle as well as fresh seafood and sashimi in a moody, luxurious dining room.
Crows Nest has no shortage of quality Indian eateries, but this is one of the best. Malabar specialises in South Indian cuisine, with super attentive staff dishing up the house specialty dosa — crispy pancakes stuffed with fillings — to two levels of diners. Just next door on the Pacific Highway, Dhakshin is another great place for a curry.
This sophisticated Military Road wine bar plates up an impressive food menu to complement a carefully chosen drop. Barrel offers exactly what you’d want to accompany a glass of red or white — cured meats, cheeses, large and small share plates plus dessert, as well as a ‘feast menu’ you can pair with matched wines — enjoyed amid the bar’s intimate atmosphere.
Down the hill from Cammeray’s main strip of eateries on Miller Street, this authentic Japanese restaurant has been barbecuing finger-licking chicken since 1991. Yakitori — grilled chicken skewers marinated in soy sauce — is Toriciya’s specialty, but they also serve an extensive menu of other Japanese treats like sashimi and beef stew.
Radio Cairo’s menu is as eclectic as the decor on its walls, combining African, Indian and Caribbean flavours. This inventive eatery has been a favourite of visitors to the vintage Hayden Orpheum cinema just across Military Road since the 1990s, attracting a steady stream of regulars for a pre or post-flick meal in the energetic dining room.