Sydney is home to an excellent dining scene, and it doesn’t wait until the clock ticks past noon to wake up for the day. Check out the 10 best brunch and breakfast spots for a morning feed in the Harbour City.
Don’t believe the old adage that breakfast is the most important meal of the day? Just ask the long lines of Sydneysiders crowding the city’s cafés for a pre-noon feed. Join the locals for a coffee and a smashed avocado with a big brekky at one of these brilliant brunch spots in Sydney, Australia.
Single O first opened its doors in Surry Hills way back in 2003 – an eternity ago in hospitality terms – and has been plating up an exciting all-day breakfast menu ever since, featuring dishes such as braised pork belly, brisket roll, and something healthy called the ‘mothership bowl’. The helpful menu even comes with a glossary to help unpack details about the food and fun facts about their roastery – Single O is one of the biggest roasters in Sydney’s speciality coffee scene.
You’ll find Cornersmith’s original café in Marrickville but their second branch in Annandale is a more spacious option for a lazy brunch in Sydney’s trendy Inner-West. The menu is constantly changing with the seasons, but a few things never waver: every dish is vegetarian, ingredients are sourced from local small-scale producers, and Cornersmith’s signature pickles and ferments take centre stage.
If Wes Anderson and your grandmother teamed up to open a café, it would probably look something like Little Lord. Combining a pastel colour palette with homely decor, this 1950s-inspired Camperdown café curates a seasonal meat-free menu displayed on old-school chalkboards sitting on the counter. Keep an eye out for Little Lord’s legendary toasted sandwiches.
You can’t talk about brunch in Sydney without mentioning The Grounds, the Alexandria mega-café that’s become an icon of the Harbour City’s hospitality scene. Occupying a heritage-listed industrial precinct in this now-fashionable inner-city suburb, The Grounds is made up of a huge café, restaurant, bar, garden, bakery, patisserie, coffee roastery, markets, florist and even an animal farm, so there’s a veritable buffet of brunch options on the table.
Morris is the second café opened by the ownership team behind Scout’s Honour in Redfern, and they’ve brought their famous sandwiches and cookies with them to their new venture in Paddington. Sitting on a corner behind the University of New South Wales’ art and design campus, this sleek café specialises in hunger-busting sandwiches such as the poached chicken and salad or the mushroom burger with beetroot relish.
This Surry Hills favourite fills the light-filled atrium of an elegant Art Deco building with some of Sydney’s best speciality coffee and a five-star brunch to match – feast on dishes like the PCP gumbo, creole jambalaya, and buttermilk fried chicken waffles. You can also find PCP’s sister café Reuben Hills on nearby Albion Street, serving a Latin American-inspired brunch in a similarly industrial-chic space.
The North Shore suburb of Chatswood isn’t where most Sydneysiders would head to sniff out breakfast, but Chimichuri is an exception. Hidden from the hordes of commuters that storm Chatswood station, this quirky café specialises in inventive, indulgent, Instagrammable breakfast recipes. Chimichuri’s signature is the soft-shell crab ‘Black Benedict’ burger, while there’s also an upscale truffle menu to treat yourself to.
After a fire shut down their stylish converted warehouse in late 2018, Brewtown is back to what they do best: dishing up some of Sydney’s most Instagrammed brunch dishes. Coffee beans are roasted on-site and there’s a meaty breakfast and brunch menu to peruse, but the stars of the show are the delectably flaky ‘cronuts’ coming out of Brewtown’s in-house bakery.
Kendall Lane is the oldest alleyway in the Rocks, and it provides the atmospheric settings for one of Sydney’s best brunch spots. Everyone can find a dish they’ll love on the Fine Food Store’s lengthy menu – there’s a long list of breakfast classics to enjoy until midday on weekdays at 3pm on weekends, plus a stack of tasty wraps and sandwiches to enjoy in the afternoon.
Found just a stroll from the golden sand of Bondi Beach, Harry’s has been a part of the Bondi community since 1997, expanding from a hole-in-the-wall coffee joint into one of Sydney’s premier brunch spots. The wholesome, inventive menu suits the health-conscious Bondi crowd – we’re talking beetroot, quinoa and ricotta fritters, coconut and lychee chia cloud and plum-cured ocean trout.