The cosmopolitan North Shore neighbourhood of Chatswood is one of the best places in Sydney to chow down on southeast Asian food, with the suburb’s streets and storefronts crowded with mouth-watering Vietnamese, Thai and Malaysian restaurants. Check out the 10 best southeast Asian eats in Chatswood, Sydney.
Sitting smack-bang in the middle of Victoria Avenue in the heart of Chatswood, Thai Naan’s stylish dining room is one of the area’s more upmarket options. Expect huge portions of tasty Thai fare — we’re talking curry puffs, fish cakes and chicken wings to start, followed by black pepper lamb fillet, soft shell crab and ‘crying tiger’ steak for mains.
This trendy Thai eatery has become a Chatswood institution over the past five years, placing a very modern twist on the much-loved southeast Asian classics. Bangkok-born chef Pla Rojratanavichai set up the stylish joint in 2013 following stints at Sydney icons Mr Wong and Ms. G’s, serving spicy dishes straight out of Thailand in this classy contemporary space on Victoria Avenue.
The colourful lanterns hanging from the ceiling of this Railway St favourite create one of the most romantic dining rooms in Chatswood, and the Vietnamese dishes flooding out of the open kitchen live up to the setting. Huong Lua is an especially good choice for diners with particular dietary requirements — gluten-free and vegan plates are clearly marked on the menu, plus entire vegan and gluten-free banquets.
This Malaysian restaurant was first established in Kuala Lumpur in the 1980s, before it opened a venue in Chatswood to save Australian admirers the 6,600-kilometre trip to tuck into their famous yong tofu, pan-fried raddish cake, butter prawns, and signature wa tan hor (rice noodles in egg gravy). You can’t miss the bright green shopfront on Victoria Avenue.
An RSL club isn’t normally where you’d expect to find a lively Malaysian hawker market, but the Ipoh Club in Chatswood RSL is an exception. This dining area was founded by Jimmy Chong, who named the space after his hometown of Ipoh in Malaysia’s Perak state, and has brought the flavours of his native country to the North Shore via this popular lunch and dinner bistro.
This recently opened restaurant is a family affair — Virginie Maikim grew up in the Parisian bistros that her Saigon-born parents ran, and has now started her own restaurant in Chatswood that fuses French and Vietnamese flavours. Chao Ba lays claim to the best bánh in town — bánh khọt (prawn pancakes), bánh bột lọc (prawn dumplings), bánh xếp (crispy dumplings), you name it.
Named after the roadside stalls that line the streets of Kuala Lumpur, Mamak was started by three mates as a market stall in Sydney’s Chinatown a decade ago, before expanding to a Chatswood location in 2010. These days, Mamak’s Chatswood branch is one of the most iconic Asian eateries in the neighbourhood, renowned for its quick, cheap and tasty Malaysian favourites at the train station.
Welcome to Chatswood’s first and only Filipino cafe, dishing up a taste of Manila for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Located in the modern Epica building next to the railway station, Panama is a family-run business that captures the diversity of the Phillipines’ cuisine, from traditional recipes to the Spanish colonial era, plus Chinese and American influences.
This is the second Chatswood eatery opened by Khao Pla’s Pla Rojratanavichai, aiming to establish a diner that channels the vibe of a Thai train station. Chum Tang focuses on traditional Thai regional dishes — meang pla pan (grilled fish) and yum scallop (scallop sashimi with pear and palm sugar) are specialities — for Chatswood’s busy shoppers and workers.
This Chatswood food bar is everything you love about Vietnamese food: fresh herbs, explosions of flavour, and great value. The speciality at Saigon Rolls, as the name suggests, is their bánh mì — crispy white bread, crunchy pork crackling, salty pâté and sweet pickled carrots — plus the fresh summer noodle bowls and phở noodle soup are other tasty options.