Racine Restaurant

Our understated country waitress is effortlessly beautiful. She gestures casually out one window to show where the 2014 Logan Sauvignon Blanc ($12/glass) comes from, then the other to indicate the origins of the Pressed Duck ($36) with lentils and heirloom carrots.

Abode Bistro

Hotel restaurants are curious beasts; and while Abode has been cleverly located as a stylish, stand-alone restaurant, it is still very much part of the Parkroyal Darling Harbour. As you’d expect, the restaurant fulfils a role in providing accessible, comforting and familiar food to overnight stayers.

The Cross Eyed Dog

While the predictable consequences of Lockout Laws are reaping havoc upon the character of Newtown, a level-by-level revamp is occurring in the original 1832 site of the ‘new town store’ from which the suburb drew its name.

The Dandylion Bondi

You’ve got to wonder why it’s taken so long for a fully-fledged vegetarian restaurant to open in an old DVD store in Bondi. Lamenting the lack of options and the demise of movie rentals, co-owner Chitti Lardi, a vego who grew up in the Inner West, sought the perfect spot for a 100% vegetarian (with vegan options) diner.


Chef Roy McVeigh marches to the sound of his own beat – and to be honest, it’s refreshing in a culinary world seemingly dominated by cronuts, overfilled doughnut milkshakes, and meals served on anything but plates.

Mum’s Table

“Pho is a beef noodle broth,” says Mylisa Nguyen (ex-LuMi Dining) emphatically, before continuing: “there’s nothing vegetarian in Vietnamese food.”

Mama’s Buoi

Salty, sweet, sour and... not. Fried Chicken Ribs ($10) with chilli-lime glaze were touted as the entrée to choose if you like it hot, but they lack any sort of real chilli kick.

The Spice Cellar

While the somewhat lurid colours of this year’s Vivid painted this town, I slipped twenty feet underground to investigate this sunken cellar.

The Henson

Your hipster pub life needn't stop when you have kids! You can bring your beard, your Kindle, your tatts, your children, yes, even your dog (true story) and save on funky Mac & Cheese ($14). It’s rippled with silver beet, cauliflower and leek, and baked in an old-fashioned enamel-coated tin plate (very on-trend), making it super tasty and vegetarian-friendly.

Restaurant Arras

I was warned: categorise this restaurant and whatever it is, will vanish in a puff of steaming chai, rather like their steamy yet elegant dessert: Hot Tea, Iced Tea, Aaah Tea featuring rhubarb, cranberry and raspberries. But I’m going to have a crack using Owner/Chef Adam Humphrey’s own words: “We’re very serious about what goes on the plate, but we’re taking the piss.”