Akash Arora serves up Australia’s hottest new restaurants.
Margaret River, WA: Yarri
Food: After spending 21 years at Vasse Felix, chef Aaron Carr has created a new restaurant in conjunction with the winemakers at Snake and Herring. Inspired by the six seasons of the local Noongar people, the menu features sustainably sourced ingredients.
Drinks: All 20 Snake and Herring wines appear alongside a tight, ever-changing list of other regional and international drops.
Atmosphere: Dine in the courtyard under the trees or nab a table in the dining room with limestone, timber, terracotta and leather finishes.
Location: The coastal town of Dunsborough, the gateway to the Margaret River region.
7/16 Cyrillean Way, Dunsborough
Melbourne, Vic: Iki-Jime
Food: Fresh, simple seafood is the order of the day at Shannon Bennett’s new restaurant, which replaces Bistro Vue. Tuck into abalone-stuffed calamari and liberally buttered tiger prawns or order whole barramundi grilled to perfection in paperbark.
Drinks: An exhaustive menu of local and international wines, from French rieslings and chardonnays to an Adelaide Hills sparkling.
Atmosphere: Deep-blue walls and exposed wooden beams create a relaxed yet chic beachside vibe.
Location: In the heart of Melbourne’s CBD.
430 Little Collins Street, Melbourne
Brisbane, Qld: Salt Meats Cheese
Food: Restaurateurs Edoardo Perlo and Stefano De Blasi are bringing their Salt Meats Cheese franchise to Brisbane with dishes that are the mainstay of Italian cuisine. Start with gnocco fritto with rocket, prosciutto and stracchino, followed by pizza capricciosa.
Drinks: The cocktails are key. Sip a Bellini with handmade white-peach sorbet and prosecco or Campari served with an orange iceblock.
Atmosphere: Bright, fresh and summery, with light timber chairs, polished concrete, pendant lights and a marble-tiled bar.
Location: A short drive from the CBD, past Fortitude Valley.
3b/63 Skyring Terrace, Newstead
Sydney, NSW: Hartsyard
Food: Following a new fit-out and menu, this hatted Newtown restaurant reopens this month. Owner-chef Gregory Llewellyn’s contemporary food revolves around seasonal vegetables and seafood. Warm scallop crudo with mustard, anyone?
Drinks: A small edit (about 30) of mainly Australian small-batch wines, many available by the glass.
Atmosphere: The light palette is the perfect canvas for the striking artworks that decorate the venue, which also has a long marble bar.
Location: A three-minute walk from the Enmore Theatre.
33 Enmore Road, Newtown
Top image: Ike-Jime