Fish At The Rocks
The cosy, intimate ambiance here at Fish at the Rocks makes for a relaxed evening out. Upstairs is a small terrace, perfect for summer dining and taking in the fantastic view over Sydney. It is BYOB giving you the option to bring your own drinks, but they are also fully licensed and offer a fantastic selection of beer and wines if you come unprepared. The beers served here are all sourced locally, so local in fact that they come from the Lord Nelson Brewery next door. The food here is exquisitely prepared and superbly presented. Their chalk board specials change daily, but recommended is the chef’s signature dish of stuffed whole boned baramundi, which melts in the mouth and is full of fantastic flavors. There is also an outstanding tasting seafood platter to share, and a dessert to die for: flourless chocolate and almond cake, with vanilla cream and a burnt orange caramel. It’s easy to see why Fish at the Rocks is so popular, so make sure to book in advance to avoid disappointment.
The Dining Room, Park Hyatt Hotel
If you’ve a taste for extravagant dining, then The Dining Room is the place for you. Once you have left your car with the Hotel valet, enter the newly renovated interior with intimate seating and a warm atmosphere that exudes class, elegance and style. There are floor to ceiling windows that offer breathtaking views over the harbour and of the iconic Sydney Opera House. Under the professional care of executive chef Frank Detrait, enjoy a delicious dinner of modern French cuisine with an Aussie twist, each course created with the freshest seasonal produce. Try the Darling River kangaroo loin, or the sumptuous Tasmanian salmon, and for dessert, the unforgettable Valrhona chocolate caraibe. Each dish is prepared and presented with the utmost care and is full of interesting and delicious flavors.
Saké Restaurant And Bar
Saké offers contemporary Japanese cuisine, under sushi master Shaun Presland. The interior is sleek and trendy, with traditional Japanese sunken tables and a smart sushi bar, and the atmosphere is energetic and lively with a plethora of wait staff on hand.The busy open kitchen cooks up a myriad of fresh seafood and exquisite sashimi. Try the king fish jalepeno or the delicious wagu beef tataki. Dine a la carte or try the chef’s nine dish set menu. With starters and mains interchangeable, the world is your oyster at Saké. The Saké bar is also open on Friday and Saturday evenings till late, where you can order fantastic cocktails such as the fruity Pink Blossom or the shocking Hattori Hanzo made with gin, saké and jalapeno peppers.
Perched above Sydney Harbour with spectacular views of the water, bridge and Sydney Opera House, Quay is one of Sydney’s four three-hatted restaurants ranked by the Sydney Good Food Guide. It’s modern, Asian-style menu is packed with exciting flavors and textures. Try the congee of mud crab starter, followed by confit pig jowel or sumptuous Flinder’s Island lamb, and finish with the legendary Snow Egg dessert. They offer a fantastic four course dinner menu, or go for you can opt for the eight course tasting menu. With its top class menu and exceptional wine list, Quay is the epitome of fine dining in Sydney. So sit back and enjoy the culinary experience and watch the myriad of boats sweeping through the water.
Sailor’s Thai Canteen And Restaurant
Housed in an old sailors home where seafarers once sought shelter is the Sailor’s Thai Canteen and Restaurant. Opened in the early 90s, Sailor’s was a pioneer of Thai cuisine in Australia. It is comprised of a minimalist interior split into two spaces; on one level is the informal canteen for all day dining with a large communal table, open kitchen and small outdoor terrace with stunning views over the harbour. On another level is the award winning restaurant with a broader menu and a more sophisticated ambiance. Try their famous Thai Chinese roasted pork in a sesame gravy, or one of their delicious panang curries. They also offer a three course menu and a fantastic eight course menu.
A local favourite for over 30 years, Phillip’s Foote is a classic pub, but with a difference. Housed inside one of The Rocks historic buildings, walk through the door and you will encounter a characterful Ye Olde pub. Carry on through to the back to find a spacious courtyard with a fantastic communal barbecue area. You can choose from a butchers style counter between an array of different kinds of steaks, fish or chicken fillets to barbecue yourself, with the help of some handy instructions. It also includes unlimited salads, fruits, breads and potatoes to make this a barbie to remember. Make sure you grab a drink on the way through the pub; choose from a great selection of local craft beers from the well stocked bar and sit yourself down in the courtyard for a fun picnic style meal.
Covering three levels in the beautiful heritage precinct in The Rocks is Appetito, a fantastic, authentic Italian restaurant. The floor to ceiling windows offer wonderful views over the rooftops and fill the space with light, adding to its radiant, relaxed atmosphere. This place also boasts two bars, a balcony, outdoor courtyard and a gorgeous private dining room. Tim Fisher, Apetito’s head chef with more than 20 years experience, conjures up mouthwatering fresh seafood dishes, pastas, pizzas and risottos, giving a modern twist to all the Italian favourites. Try the handmade pepper linguine with delicious Moreton Bay bugs (a type of lobster), or one of the outstanding ravioli or gnocchi dishes.
The rooftop at the Glenmore Pub is a destination in itself, with a panoramic view of Sydney Harbour. The rooftop now has a retractable roof so those amazing views can be enjoyed come rain or shine. The food here is just as impressive as the view, with its no frills hearty pub grub such as burgers, fish and chips, hot dogs and ribs. They also cater for vegetarians, and offer an extensive selection of tasty dishes, as well as a great kids menu. The Glenmore, with its al fresco dining with fantastic views is definitely worth all those stairs to the rooftop, but make sure to book in advance to avoid disappointment.
As the second home of the famed fine-dining establishment in Parramatta, El Phoenician is just as glamorous and extravagant as its sibling. The modern interior, glass and marble, sandstone columns, handsome banquettes and padded walls, exudes decadence with a trendy twist. They specialise in Lebanese food with a Aussie twist, served in the traditional Middle Eastern Mezza style, from delicious seafood and aromatic meat skewers to tabouli salads and an astonishing array of breads and dips. As well as being fantastic for large groups and celebrations, this is perfect spot for pre theatre dining as El Phoenician sits right on the waterfront and is just a stone’s throw from the Sydney Theatre Company. But if you are still here at the end of the evening, watch out for the belly dancers as they shimmy around the restaurant who bring the whole place to life.
Ananas Bar And Brasserie
The opulent décor of this Parisian-inspired bistro is a feast in itself. Living up to its name, the decor of Ananas is subtly infused with pineapple patterns, even the lamp stands are shaped like them. As well as these quirky touches, the interior of the brasserie is elegant and stylish. The Belle Époque murals on the walls, bird sculptures, banquette style seating and subtle lighting, all create a romantic, informal ambiance. Sit at the stylish bar for pre dinner cocktails before sampling the classic french gutsy flavors perfected by Irish born chef Paul Mcgrath. Try the entree of classic soupe a l’oignon, served to you at your table, or a melt in the mouth risotto followed by moule mariniere, fillet mignon or sole Grenobloise. The desserts are a winner too, with a menu full of delicious treats like their exquisite Black Swan chocolate tart. Throughout the year the Ananas Brasserie also holds exciting special events like champagne brunches, so if you’re in town make sure to visit.