Sydney is internationally recognised for its harbour surrounds and the glistening ocean that rolls in to its spectacular coastline. It seems only appropriate then, that some of the city’s best restaurants are located just metres from the shore. Here are eight Sydney restaurants plating up stunning food with views to match.
Bennelong, Circular Quay
Acclaimed chef Peter Gilmore’s Bennelong takes residence in the Sydney Opera House, producing its own sense of memorable theatre on every plate served. Celebrating Australia’s native produce at the core of its menu, Gilmore has created a stunning restaurant experience that reflects the Australia ideal as much as the iconic building it is housed within.
Bennelong Point, Sydney Opera House, Sydney; (02) 9240 8000
Aria, Circular Quay
Co-owned by restaurateur Bruce Sullivan and Chef Matt Moran, Aria has worked hard – and succeeded – to maintain its distinguished standing since Moran’s initiation into celebrity-chef status. As it has done since opening in 1999, the restaurant continues to receive the highest accolades thanks to Moran’s ability to consistently create balanced, elegant dishes.
1 Macquarie St, Sydney; (02) 9240 2255
Catalina, Rose Bay
Extended over the water in Sydney’s salubrious Rose Bay, Catalina has a reputation for hosting the suburb’s illustrious elite, who come for the romantic location and award-winning food. Named after the area’s historic seaplanes, which visitors may still witness taking off during the day, Catalina offers a unique atmosphere coupled with an impeccably fresh menu of seafood, sushi and sashimi.
Lyne Park, Rose Bay; (02) 9371 0555
Flying Fish, Pyrmont
Situated on Pyrmont’s Pier 21, this restaurant claims space in one of Sydney’s significant maritime heritage sites looking east with a clear and magnificent outlook towards the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Flying Fish ties together the history of its location with an innovative menu by offering interiors of modern, understated elegance coupled with a unique mix of Asian-inspired seafood and meat dishes.
Lower Deck, Jones Bay Wharf, 19-21 Pirrama Rd, Pyrmont; (02) 9518 6677
Icebergs Dining Room and Bar, Bondi Beach
Overlooking perhaps the most photographed ocean pool in Australia, Bondi’s Icebergs Dining Room and Bar has gained a sterling reputation in the eyes of international visitors and locals alike. Moving away from standard waterfront seafood fare, Icebergs takes inspiration from its director Maurice Terzini’s Italian heritage. The result is a menu focusing on seasonal and inventive flavours, ever-evolving under the guidance of head chef Monty Koludrovic.
1 Notts Ave, Bondi Beach; (02) 9365 9000
Quay, The Rocks
Quay is unparalleled in Australia for its collection of industry-recognised accolades. It has not only been awarded the local, prestigious three-hat rating for more than 10 years running, but has also been been named Best Restaurant of the Year by The Good Food Guide on multiple occasions and was also rated the Best Restaurant in Australasia in 2012 by S.Pellegrino World’s Best 50 Restaurants judges. Executive chef Peter Gilmore sources the restaurant’s produce from independent fishermen and farmers in order to provide the highest quality local menu of modern Australian cuisine. With an eastern outlook across the harbour to the Sydney Opera House, Quay boasts one of the finest Australian restaurant views – a perfect match for the establishment’s culinary excellence.
Overseas Passenger Terminal, Hickson Rd, The Rocks; (02) 9251 5600
The Bathers’ Pavilion, Mosman
The beautiful harbour sanctuary Balmoral Beach provides the perfect backdrop for The Bathers’ Pavilion – a restaurant that offers a laidback, family-friendly feel whilst maintaining the highest standard of fine-dining offerings. The restaurant focuses on Australian growers and producers as suppliers of its premium ingredients, presenting a wine list featuring Australia’s “Small Vineyards”, alongside a seasonally determined food menu.
4 The Esplanade, Mosman ; (02) 9969 5050
Berowra Waters Inn, Berowra Waters
Finding a secluded waterfront eatery around Sydney is difficult to say the least, yet Berowra Waters Inn offers exactly that. Located north of the city, away from road access in the native bush setting of the Hawkesbury River, the restaurant is only accessible via private vessel, seaplane or private ferry. It isn’t the location alone that impresses its patrons, of course; a superb degustation menu dictated by the seasons complements sommelier-recommended wines.
Public Wharves, Bay Road, Berowra Waters; (02) 9456 1027