Restaurants in Sydney That Should Have a Michelin Star

Sydney is home to many fine-dining experiences
Sydney is home to many fine-dining experiences | © / Alamy Stock Photo
Kylie McDowell

The Michelin Guide has made its way as far across the globe as Asia, but the influential European food guide hasn’t arrived in Australia – yet. The French tyre company’s food guide has rated over 30,000 restaurants since its inception in the 1900s. With a food scene as big as ours, it’s surprising there aren’t any Australian restaurants on the list. Here are the top Sydney restaurants that should definitely have a Michelin Star.

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Award-winning chef Lennox Hastie takes traditional BBQ and open-flame cooking to the extreme at his rustic Surry Hills restaurant, Firedoor. Taming hot coals to create striking dishes of vegetables, seafood and meat, the restaurant is a dining experience that comes with entertainment. Guests have a clear view of the open kitchen and can watch the masters at work among the 900C flames.
The $140-per-person five-course menu changes daily depending on the seasonal ingredients available, and only the highest quality produce making the cut – Firedoor works with farmers and small-scale producers to grow bespoke vegetables, rare ingredients, and aged meat for the restaurant.
Hastie honed his skills in Michelin Star restaurants across France, Spain and the UK before returning to Australia where he is critically acclaimed. Since opening Firedoor in 2017, Hastie published his debut book, Finding Fire, which features 80 of his best recipes. Hastie also features in an episode of the latest Chef’s Table: BBQ series on Netflix.
Check out Firedoor on Instagram for the Sydney restaurant’s daily top menu selections.


The list of awards given to Sydney chef and owner of Tetsuya’s restaurant, Tetsuya Wakuda, is pages long. Although the Michelin Guide hasn’t yet made it to Australia, Wakuda has been awarded two Michelin Stars for his Singapore restaurant of the same name. The traditional Japanese-inspired restaurant sits within a refurbished heritage-listed building in Sydney’s Central Business District.


Unassuming Sydney restaurant Sixpenny is one of the most raved-about restaurants in town. Named after the sixpence restaurants that operated in the late 1800s, its $175-per-person tasting menu is rooted in modern Australian cuisine. Seasonal ingredients are sourced from small local farmers, producers and fisherman.
The small three-hatted Stanmore restaurant is owned and run by award-winning head chefs Daniel Puskas and Aaron Ward. Sixpenny has been in the top 10 for the Australian Financial Review’s ‘Australia’s Top 100’ restaurants.
The menu changes constantly and they’re happy to provide options for those with allergies and dietary requirements when notified at the time booking.


La Parrilla

Argentinian barbecue restaurant Porteño is a Sydney favourite that has risen from the ashes after it caught on fire in 2015. Chefs and owners, Ben Milgate and Elvis Abrahanowicz, have been named ‘Chef of the Year’ by the Sydney Morning Herald and awarded with “Chef Hats” among other awards in the 10 years since they opened the original restaurant.
The Porteño concept is based around the traditional Parrilla and Asado style of Argentinian cooking, and the menu has been designed to share. Although the tapas restaurant is predominantly a meat-lover’s dream, it does have delicious seafood and vegetarian options.
Rockabilly-styled interiors, music and staff add to the upbeat flavour.

Rising Sun Workshop

This Newtown hardware store turned independent motorcycle workshop and restaurant is an unexpected location for some of Sydney’s most photogenic food. The casual two-level Rising Sun Workshop was partly crowdfunded, making it a true community hotspot for locals. Chef Nick Smith serves up his take on Asian-inspired Australian food in a relaxed setting and has been awarded a “Chef Hat”.
Rising Sun Workshop buys produce only from small local growers, roasters, smokers, brewers, winemakers and distillers. The restaurant is open all day with the chef’s dinner menu from $80 per person.

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