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Top Italian Restaurants in Byron Bay, Australia

Amidst Byron Bay's restaurants are plenty of Italian options
Amidst Byron Bay's restaurants are plenty of Italian options | © Camila Se / Alamy Stock Photo
Byron Bay may be one of Australia’s most popular coastal towns, but there’s more to its food scene than seafood, barbecue and beach bars. If you’re after a taste of Italy, here are nine of the top Italian restaurants in Byron Bay to satisfy your pizza and pasta cravings.
There are numerous pizza joints in Byron Bay © Jack Malipan Travel Photography / Alamy Stock Photo

Di Vino

Restaurant, Italian

With a Roman co-owner and a chef from the Liguria region of Italy, it’s no wonder Di Vino serves up some of Byron Bay’s leading Italian food. This homey restaurant and wine bar is situated in the centre of town and has patio doors that open onto a large terrace for a refreshing sea breeze. The menu features bona fide Italian comfort food like tagliatelle, ravioli and panna cotta, as well as more imaginative meals like wild boar ragu and vegetarian pumpkin lasagna. Complete your meal with natural wine from Italian and Australian producers and you’re in for a treat.

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Jonson’s Italian Bar and Cucina

Restaurant, Bar, Italian

Jonson’s is a former winner of the Australian Good Food Guide award for Best Italian Food in the Northern Rivers region. The chic restaurant is decked out in black tiles, timber and quirky artwork and offers the chance to dine indoors or on the deck. The restaurant’s fine-dining chefs provide breakfast, lunch and dinner, and while pizza is off the menu, classics like spaghetti bolognese, antipasto boards, spicy meatballs and profiteroles are served with gusto. Choose from an extensive cocktail list, and visit on Pasta Tuesday, when you can order two pasta meals for just 25 Australian dollars (£12.50).

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Il Buco Café and Pizzeria

Pizzeria, Restaurant, Italian, Mediterranean, $$$

There’s nothing like a thin and crispy wood-fired pizza, which Il Buco delivers with style. It’s a small restaurant so it’s ideal for takeaways, which you can enjoy on nearby Main Beach. The artisan pizzas feature seasonal ingredients from local suppliers such as Coopers Shoot tomatoes and meat from Bangalow Sweet Pork. There’s also a range of appetisers, sides and desserts available at Il Buco, along with organic coffee.

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The Italian Byron Bay

Restaurant, Italian, $$$

Set across from Main Beach, The Italian Byron Bay is known for its contemporary menu created by co-owner and chef William Ennis, who has worked in two Michelin-star restaurants and won three prestigious Chef Hats. Choose from a selection of innovative dishes like lasagna of slow-cooked lamb and penne in a porcini cream sauce with vegetables and shredded beef cheek. Then there’s the outstanding chef’s risotto, duck leg and a robust wine and cocktail list, complete with a tropical garden and ocean views.

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Earth ‘n’ Sea

Restaurant, Pizzeria, Italian, $$$

If you’re after pizza, Earth ‘n’ Sea offers some of Byron’s best with a twist – they’re all made with a wholemeal base. This family-run restaurant has been around since 1976 and has 22 varieties of pizza, including gluten-free and vegan options, all with customisable toppings. Try the off-beat Beethoven, which is sprinkled with prawns, pineapple and bananas. There’s more than just pizza on the menu though, including garlicky baked dough balls and five types of pasta you can mix and match with six different sauces. Earth ‘n’ Sea is run by a Byron husband-and-wife team and has a delivery as well as eat-in service.

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Targa

Restaurant, Italian, $$$

Targa serves European dishes created from local produce. The menu features some Italian staples such as bruschetta, mushroom risotto, linguine pasta and hand-rolled gnocchi with roasted pumpkin, gorgonzola and sage. The restaurant is located just two blocks from the beach and boasts European decor to match the menu. Don’t miss the Targa tiramisu affogato with espresso, hazelnut ice cream and honeycomb.

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Trattoria Basiloco

Restaurant, Italian, $$$

Trattoria Basiloco is owned by an Italian family who hail from Sardinia, so expect the finest Italian food. Their signature is pasta served the traditional al dente way, as well as huge, 33-centimetre (13-inch) wood-fired pizzas with quality ingredients. Italian and Australian wines are served by the carafe in this atmospheric bistro with a Byron feel, set at the end of Main Beach with the option of dining al fresco. Pastas are all handmade with Sardinian flair, and there’s plenty of fresh seafood on the menu, as well as gluten-free pasta and veggie options.

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The Italian Diner

Restaurant, Italian, $$$

For a change of scene, head to nearby Bangalow to experience the retro charm of a real trattoria. The diner brings flavours from various Italian regions, with an emphasis on homemade pasta. Other popular picks include the fried-to-perfection arancini balls, black-pepper gnocchi and grilled Binna Burra eye fillet. Pair your meal with an Italian or Australian wine and for dessert, dig into the deconstructed strawberry panna cotta.

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Pizza Paradiso

Restaurant, Italian, $$$

Come to Pizza Paradiso for all your usual suspects, whether you’re looking for Hawaiian, pepperoni or a simple margherita. All of the bases in this Byron Bay pizzeria are served with a special, house tomato sauce and mozzarella with creative toppings to elevate the dish. Think cherry tomatoes and basil, bocconcini mozzarella and seafood. The Pesto Pizza is a favourite, with red peppers, ricotta and spinach, caramelised onion and roasted pumpkin. Gluten-free options are available, as well as tapas and desserts such as tiramisu, chocolate mousse and sweet calzone.

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There’s more to Byron Bay’s food scene than seafood © Peter Ptschelinzew / Alamy Stock Photo
These recommendations were updated on April 14, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.