Gone are the days of only a few standout eateries; now, Redfern has transformed into one of the go-to spots in Sydney’s bustling dining scene. From trendy cafes to casual ramen and wine bars, there’s no shortage of delicious options to choose from. We’ve put together a handy guide for your next foodie adventure, featuring the best chart-topping spots around the suburb.
It’s the newest creation from ex-Billy Kwong Chef, Hamish Ingham, celebrating Chinese cooking with a modern approach. The menu at Redbird centres around one single, signature dish: the eponymously-named Redbird. The bird itself changes regularly from chicken to pigeon or duck, poached in a classic, aromatic Cantonese red braise. Other dishes on the menu pay tribute to China’s lesser-known provinces, incorporating local and native ingredients throughout. Expect Kangaroo Tartare with crisp wonton skins, Steamed Murray Cod with ginger and shallots, and Sichuan Caramel Chocolate Truffles for dessert.
Find Redbird at 99 Redfern St.
Sofia is a coastal Mediterranean-inspired diner showcasing traditional homestyle dishes backed by renowned Australian Chef, Justin North. The dishes are flavourful but uncomplicated, shining a spotlight on the quality and seasonality of the locally sourced produce. Mouth-watering dishes include a Chargrilled eggplant salad with parsley, currants and pine nuts, 1kg of slow-cooked, charred lamb ribs with oregano, lemon and flake salt and a Walnut syrup cake with mascarpone. The best part yet? All cooking is done with Sofia’s own extra virgin olive oil, made from the family’s olive groves in Greece.
Find Sofia at Level 1/433 Cleveland St.
Opened by the Love Tilly Group and The People (behind The Norfolk House & Hotel), Redfern’s Catalan-inspired Wine Bar, La Salut, is making waves for its Spanish vino and share plates. It’s an intimate 40-person spot, with a wine list in the hundreds. Be introduced to an array of rare and natural Spanish wines such as pétillant-naturel from Nuria Renom in Alt Penedès, wines aged in tinajas (old underground amphoras) and Ramiro Ibáñez’s oxidative Palomino-based whites.
Find La Salut at 305 Cleveland St.
The Norfolk Hotel
The Norfolk Hotel is one of Redfern’s most historic pubs, spanning two levels, with two bars and an expansive outdoor courtyard. The menu boasts a selection of classic pub eats like Chicken Schnitzel, Chicken or Eggplant Parmigiana and mouthwatering burgers. The main event however is the meats off the grill, served with mash and vegetables or triples and salad. Highlights include the Bufferflied Half Chicken, 250g Riverine Pasture & Grain Fed Rump Steak, and the 250g Southern Ranges Sirloin. Plus, visit for Taco Tuesday where tacos are $3 and every time you hear ‘The Bell’ ring, you can get them for just $1 for 15 minutes only.
Find The Norfolk Hotel at 305 Cleveland St, Redfern.
Misfits’ dark brown doors may give the impression of leading to an underground club. However, step inside and you’ll be greeted with a sprawling retro restaurant with delicious food and drinks. The multi-faceted design for the venue includes a dining room, rooftop courtyard, casual front bar, and a secret bar hidden behind a bookshelf. The decor has been thoughtfully curated to preserve an old-fashioned ’70s vibe with lavish mid-century furniture. Food comes in varieties, with a menu split between classic pub fares like burgers and beers, to more artisanal offerings such as craft spirits and handmade blood sausages. There’s also an impressive selection of spirits, cocktails and even whiskey (which is listed in the dozens)
Find Misfits at 106 George St.
Bistro St Jacques
For years, the charming red bistro of Bistro St Jacques has stood amongst terraces, delighting their guests with unpretentious and honest French delicacies. Staying true to traditions whilst catering to modern tastes, Bistro St Jacques offers a unique twist on classic French techniques with a lighter touch. Drawing inspiration from the flavours of Southern France, the menu showcases fresh, locally sourced ingredients, with an emphasis on seafood and vegetables. Try Port Lincoln mussels with leek, riesling and crème fraîche sauce or their signature twice-baked goats cheese soufflé with parsley sauce.
Find Bistro St Jacques at 96 Pitt St.
Nestled in the heart of Redfern is Fontana – a cosy and inviting Italian diner serving authentic Italian food with a rustic flare. In the kitchen, owner and chef, Daniel Johnston, oversees the creation of a menu that highlights familiar and nostalgic flavours. Although the menu changes frequently, guests can anticipate a variety of share plates, delicious pasta options, and hearty mains to choose from. Start off with a cocktail and ricotta della casa with house-made focaccia, before moving onto pappardelle osso buco – tender braised veal shanks that fall right off the bone.
Find Fontana at 133A Redfern St.
The Sunshine Inn
With a knack for delicious vegetarian food and a heavy focus on natural wine, it’s no wonder why The Sunshine Inn is a Redfern favourite. The venue is split into two, with a more laid-back dining experience at the front of the house, and an exclusive degustation-only dining room (known as DD’s) in the back. The menu focuses on elevated pub food, most of which are vegetarian. Expect tempting offerings like jalapeño poppers with tapioca cream cheese, smoked garlic hummus, cheese and olive plates, as well as larger dishes like a vegetarian “meatball” sub and vegan scallops made with mushrooms.
Find The Sunshine Inn at 180 Redfern St.
Bush takes a page out of traditional Aussie culture, using that as inspiration to offer a single-page menu with no-nonsense dishes. Head Chef, Grant Lawn, viewed the restaurant as a chance to re-introduce the Australian bush to the forefront of Sydney’s dining scene, with food and ingredients directly inspired by the Australian outback. There are small starters to get your appetite going, like Smoked Eel pikelet with chilli jam and saltbush spliff. Larger plates get more experimental, with the likes of Kangaroo, Pepperberry, Warrigal Greens and Illawarra Plums scattered throughout.
Find Bush at 55 George St.
There are only 28 seats at Redfern’s Rara, making the izakaya-style eatery an intimate and cosy affair. Customers flock near and far to get their hands on hand-pulled ramen, vegetarian options and snack-style share food, but perhaps the most popular is Rara’s tonkatsu broth. In keeping with tradition, the tonkatsu broth at Rara is made using only water, garlic, and pork bones. The signature bowl of tonkotsu ramen offers a choice of Shio (salt) tare, black garlic oil or chilli oil, and is garnished with smoky chashu. The chashu, made from Bundarra Berkshire pork, is slow-roasted, seasoned, and finished over a coal grill, adding a unique smoky flavour you won’t find anywhere else.
Find Rara Ramen at 66b Regent St.
Bart Jr is the second Redfern venue from the Scout’s Honour crew, perfect for those seeking a sophisticated yet relaxed wine bar. Its menu rotates every three weeks, with seasonal food and drink specials to keep you on your toes. The dishes are simple, creative small plates that are made for communal sharing, like Pappardelle with duck & porcini ragu and tuna rojá with curry leaf butter. Drinks are carefully curated, featuring a selection of locally grown and biodynamic options. Beers are from local brewers and cocktails are shaken with a rotating menu also, which means you’re bound to discover new favourites all the time.
Find Bart Jr at 92 Pitt St.
Kepos Street Kitchen
Bringing the flavours of the Middle East to the heart of Redfern is Kepos Street Kitchen, known for its all-day Israeli-inspired menu. The eatery serves coffee, organic tea and even mocktails alongside brunch-style cafe food, running well into the late afternoon. Tel Aviv falafel and homemade hummus is one of their signature dishes, each bite being more flavourful and crispier than the last. For main dishes, you can choose between soft-baked eggs and delicious sandwiches, or stick to lighter options like their tabouleh salad, tossed with finely diced tomato and pomegranate.
Find Kepos St Kitchen at 96 Kepos St.