The task of jamming all the best eateries in Newtown is no doubt a big one. From garage workshops and laneway burgers to gourmet cheese bars and delis, Newtown is studded with some solid restaurants hosting all the juicy feeds.
We’ve rounded your heavy hitters from King Street and everywhere in between, here are all the best restaurants in Newtown.
Take a seat at the deli counter and indulge in a fine selection of cheeses, fancy caviar and cold cuts, or opt for the whole dine-in bonanza in their bistro – which of course features many a deli ingredient. From the guys that brought us Porteno and Bodega, you can’t go wrong at Continental Deli. Share some scallops with bottarga butter and salted chilli, or grilled king prawns with lardo, coconut and lime. For dessert polish off the chocolate mousse with mascarpone cream, blood plum and coffee jam. Oh, and you can't leave without trying Continental's iconic "Mar-tinny"—a martini served in a tin can.
We first encountered Gigi about 4 years ago, before she made her full vegan transition. The rustic wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas and calzones (this time sans cheese) remain some of the best around Sydney and the team here have even developed vegan cheese for those that think a pizza without cheese is blasphemous.
This mammoth Thai institution has some of the best Thai food in Sydney, serving keen diners for over 20 years. Service is top-notch here, with super speedy delivery of mains despite it being packed most nights of the week. Try the betel leaf prawn or the classic chicken satay to start. Choose from all the usual suspects for the main event—green, red, yellow, massaman and penang curry.
Stinking Bishops is a gourmet cheese bar with over 40 varieties of cheese on offer. Saddle up to a charcuterie board, made up of two, three or four types of cheese and pair with local wines. If you’re wanting a meal of the heftier sorts these guys also serve up a slow cooked lamb shoulder with fennel, cashew and mint. Then there's the very (very) indulgent mac and cheese.
Rising Sun Workshop
This neat little back alley joint is an eclectic haven for coffee, baked goods, motorcycles and ramen. Part communal workshop, part ramen house—Rising Sun was dreamt up by a collective made up of former coffee legends, motorbike enthusiasts, a baker, a chef and a designer. Chef Nick Smith's ramen is the stuff typical of what you would find in Tokyo and this is the only place in Sydney to do breakfast ramen—onsen egg, buttered toast broth, crispy bacon bits and smoky tomato.
It’s been hailed as one of Sydney’s best burger joints, and for a good reason. Located in an old dingy church with walls covered in writing, gothic chandeliers, candle wax and loud punk music, we don’t really know what makes Mary’s burgers so damn good but they have set the bar. The legends at Mary’s serve up a cheeseburger on steroids with a grass-fed beef patty, American style cheese, in-house smoked “trash-can” bacon, crispy lettuce and some secret sauce that has us drooling just thinking about it.
Bloodwood Restaurant and Bar
With a trio of hospitality heavyweights and chefs, you know it’s going to be good. The menu at Bloodwood is seasonal and designed for sharing. Since opening their doors, this place has been inundated with food and wine awards. Get the ball rolling with golden polenta chips and cheesy gorgonzola dipping sauce. Share a classic charcuterie board, spiced beef brisket and maple fried chicken and sip on seasonal fruit bellinis.
Delhi ‘O’ Delhi
Dehli ‘O’ Dehli is an upmarket cosy little Indian joint redefining your opinion of butter chicken. As a collection of local restaurant awards adorn the walls, you know you’re in for a treat. Get a crew of your hungriest mates together for the slow cooked whole leg of lamb, infused with cinnamon oil and marinated in potli spices for 24 hours. For something slightly less over the top, opt for Indian classics like duck masala or butter and garlic prawns with a big portion of butter Naan bread thrown in for good measure.
Once famous for its Southern-American fried chicken, Hartsyard has had a sophisticated revamp. With new head chef, Jarrod Walsh (Formerly QT Hotels and Automata), it comes as no surprise that the menu here has been slightly refined. Expect fried cheese with hot English mustard, roast duck with plum hoisin and flank steak with anchovy butter. Weekends at Hartsyard mean a boozy brunch, complete with exclusive dishes and matching cocktails.
This little hole in the wall specialises in (yep you guessed it) bao. It seems that the traditional Taiwanese street food has crept onto menus Sydney wide, offering staples such as pork belly and the likes. But Belly Bao likes to push the envelope with their bao offering, serving up their specialty “baogers” (burgers with a bao bun), slow braised beef short rib bao, bao noodles and, wait for it—a Golden Gaytime bao decked out with gaytime icecream, salted caramel, fresh banana and coconut. You’re welcome.
Oscillate Wildly is a posh little fine-dining restaurant complete with fancy white table cloths, serving up French bistro-inspired cuisine. Head chef and owner Karl Firla seeks to bring diners a seasonal menu using ingredients from local producers and suppliers where possible. While the 8-course degustation menu is changed up regularly, you can expect dainty and delicate portions using a range of exotic and gourmet ingredients.
The brains behind LP’s Quality Meats and Porteno have formed a holy alliance to bring to life this wood-fired pizza joint. With pizzas adorned with meats courtesy of LP’s, cheese sourced from nearby Marrickville cheesemakers Vanella, and fermented pizza dough with the puffy edges, this place is up there with the best. The pizza menu is limited to around 5 choices, which is a win when you’re indecisive. Try the mortadella pizza topped with fior di latte, garlic, parmesan, green olives and of course house made mortadella.
Famously known for that giant cookie that littered Instagram feeds far and wide, most would think this place is purely a daytime affair. Luckily for us, they open for dinner Wednesday through Saturday donning a pretty tasty menu too. You’re in for lamb ragu, hot sticky beef ribs and giant ravioli pillows. And now’s probably a good time to mention that these guys are serving up a dessert share platter complete with lamington trifle and milo mousse teacups.
The Italian Bowl
Having been in business for over a solid decade, this place has got all of your wildest pasta-related fantasies fulfilled. From your fool-proof spaghetti bolognese to pesto smothered ravioli and Puttanesca penne, The Italian Bowl has got you covered. Choose your pasta of choice then add your favourite sauce—simple as that.
Delivering a menu full of Cantonese classics, Queen Chow boasts their famous handmade wonton soup and BBQ Peking duck pancakes for patrons to try. With Eric Koh, a world-famous dim sum chef, in the kitchen, this meal is one for the snaps.
While you're here you should check out all the new Sydney openings we're excited for this month.
Image credit: Supplied.