What makes a good restaurant? At Broadsheet, we’re interested in how well a place lives up to its own ambitions, regardless of its age, price point or cuisine.

Maybe it offers value for money and an incredible atmosphere. Maybe it pioneered a trend, and remains the most vital example of it. Or maybe, after several decades in operation, it still offers an undeniably great experience. All are equally valid answers.

The remit may be wide, but if you’re looking for restaurants that both define and capture Sydney’s culinary spirit, stop right here.

Related pages:
Best Restaurants in Chippendale
Best Restaurants in Surry Hills
Best Special Occasion Restaurants in Sydney
Best Date Places in Sydney

Ester Restaurant & Bar

Where a wood-fired oven is fed with produce sourced from Sydney and surrounds.

46-52 Meagher Street, Chippendale


A fun, energetic take on fine dining headed by ex-Momofuku Seiōbo chef Clayton Wells.

5 Kensington Street, Chippendale


Luxurious dining with prime views.

Overseas Passenger Terminal The Rocks, Sydney

Saint Peter

All-Australian seafood and wine.

362 Oxford Street, Paddington

Icebergs Dining Room and Bar

On Bondi Beach's cliffside, this upscale Mediterranean restaurant flaunts its fabulous food and view.

Restaurant 1 Notts Ave, Bondi

LuMi Bar & Dining

An intriguing restaurant in Pyrmont, with a chef that lists Noma and Attica on his CV.

56 Pirrama Road, Pyrmont

Momofuku Seiobo

David Chang’s Korean eatery from New York.

The Star, Level G 80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont

Restaurant Hubert

Reviving French splendour in an old-fashioned setting.

15 Bligh Street, Sydney


Drinks and snacks reach new heights at this not-restaurant from the team at Ester.

80 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills


A slow, intimate dinner of simple, local produce.

83 Percival Road, Stanmore

Oscillate Wildly

Cult neighbourhood restaurant serving up inventive degustation.

275 Australia Street, Newtown

LP’s Quality Meats

At the heart of this restaurant is a smoker that weighs a tonne, producing some seriously great-tasting meat.

Unit 1 16 Chippen Street, Chippendale


Charcoal-roasted meats and sides, paired with a choice of 300 wines.

50 Holt Street, Surry Hills


Let star chef Tetsuya Wakuda guide you through 10 stunning courses, while you gaze onto a peaceful Japanese-style garden.

529 Kent Street, Sydney


A slick tapas and cocktail bar with a dash of rockabilly.

216 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills


Sydney’s first fine-dining restaurant devoted to plants.

57 Macleay Street, Potts Point


A wood-fired oven, an open-flame hearth and some of the country’s best produce and cocktail bar underneath.

380 Oxford Street, Paddington

The Bridge Room

East meets west with a diverse culinary spread.

44 Bridge Street, Sydney

Sean's Panaroma

Rickety-chic at this memorable beachside restaurant.

270 Campbell Parade, Bondi

Big Poppa’s

Italian food, drinks and hip-hop served until 3am. Yes.

96 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst


High-quality produce cooked over a naked flame, with no sauces to hide behind.

23-33 Mary Street, Surry Hills

Bentley Restaurant & Bar

In the heart of the CBD, Bentley offers dishes that reflect a reputation for innovation.

27 O'Connell Street, Sydney


Seafood in Barangaroo with views of the harbour.

10/23 Barangaroo Avenue, Sydney


Peter Gilmore has made the culinary vision that earned him accolades at Quay more approachable at the Opera House.

Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point

Paper Bird

An all-day Asian restaurant from the Moon Park team.

46a Macleay Street, Potts Point


Home-style Japanese in a space that’ll transport you straight there.

102 21 Alberta Street, Sydney


Japanese food fit for a high (or first-time) roller.

Level G, The Darling at The Star 80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont

10 William St

Find classic Italian swagger at Sydney's most-experimental wine bar.

10 William Street, Paddington

Fratelli Paradiso

One of Sydney’s most treasured spots for Italian culture.

Bakery 12-16 Challis Avenue, Potts Point

Mr. Wong

A dumpling den with 1930s Shanghai effect.

3 Bridge Lane, Sydney

Golden Century

Fresh seafood since 1989.

393-399 Sussex Street, Sydney

Pilu at Freshwater

Sardinian fine-dining on the beach.

Moore Road, Freshwater