A restaurant packed with locals in the tourist-soaked heart of Sydney (a short stroll from Circular Quay) might sound like an improbability, but that’s the promise of The Morrison Bar & Oyster Room.
With high ceilings, exposed brick walls, vast windows and an architecturally striking circular bar, this is a place where you can have your fill of $1.50 oysters between 6pm and 7pm on Wednesdays; enjoy $6 house wines, beers and spirits everyday between 5pm and 7pm; or go the whole hog and enjoy a fine-dining fiesta any night of the week.
English-born Australian chef Sean Connolly is at the helm with a menu that dabbles in both seafood and meat, and plates up everything with plenty of panache.
Among the entrées, stick with the sashimi of ocean trout, kingfish and yellowfin tuna if you want to play it safe, or opt for the crab and lettuce tacos if you want to notch it up a bit. Whatever you do, don’t forget to order the southern fried prawn sliders that beautifully marry the brilliant kick of spiced mayo with the sweetness of super-soft milk buns.
There are plenty of crowd-pleasers in the mains sections too – from kingfish cutlets with miso hollandaise to zucchini noodles with sharp pecorino. Complement them with sides like chips drenched in duck fat or Brussel sprouts with lashings of olive oil and lemon.
Atmosphere: Smart and sophisticated, yet relaxed
Best for: After work drinks, casual weeknight meals and leisurely weekend dinners
Cuisine: Modern Australian
Standout dish: Southern friend prawn sliders
Open: Seven days for lunch and dinner
Address: 225 George Street, Sydney
Phone number: (02) 9247 6744