Do you have a milestone anniversary or big birthday to celebrate? Here are the best spots to toast to an important moment in Sydney.
Fine diners don’t get much more iconic than the luxe dining destination, Aria. Dubbed as one of Sydney’s best harbourside restaurants, Aria is the brainchild of chef Matt Moran, delivering a menu of refined, seasonally-driven eats inspired by Sydney’s iconic harbour views. With floor to ceiling windows framing two of Sydney’s most iconic landmarks, say cheers with a lavish a la carta menu curated by Executive Chef Joel Bickford (think mud crab with cucumber, snapper with summer squash and pasture fed eye fillet). Ready to splurge? Enjoy a seven-course tasting menu ($210 per person, or $350+ for beverage pairing), showcasing the chef’s favourite selection of dishes.
Find Aria at 1 Macquarie Street, Sydney. Find out more here.
In a similar vein, luxe fine dining destination Bennelong finds its home inside one of Australia’s most iconic buildings, the Sydney Opera House. With unparalleled vistas across Sydney Harbour, this lavish dining room is the perfect spot to celebrate a special occasion. With a menu curated by Executive Chef Peter Gilmore, expect a vibrant menu celebrating some of Australia’s best home-grown flavours. Opt for a two ($115) or three course ($150) a la carte menu, with a selection of fresh local seafood, aged meats, seasonal vegetables and so much more.
Find Bennelong at the Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point Sydney. Find out more here.
If booking a trip to Tokyo feels a bit out of your budget, Tetsuya is the next best thing. This acclaimed restaurant is one of the city’s leading Japanese dining rooms. Created by Tetsuya Wakuda, expect traditional Japanese-inspired eats served in a unique degustation-style setting. Each dish is enhanced by classic French culinary techniques, crafted with the freshest ingredients around. With a constantly evolving menu, diners can be sure that no two dinners will ever be the same at Tetsuya. Plus, the venue boasts one of Sydney’s most comprehensive wine lists, with sommeliers on-hand to help you pair wines to each dish on the menu.
Find Tetsuya at 529 Kent Street, Sydney. Find out more here.
Speaking of heading abroad, the subterranean French restaurant Hubert is one of the best spots to celebrate a special occasion in the heart of the CBD. Head down this spiral staircase and step into a moody, candlelit dining room filled with good conversation and lavish food and wine. Order a bottle of bubbles, a dozen oysters and treat yourself to a lavish banquet menu of French-inspired classics.
Find Restaurant Hubert at the basement of 15 Bligh Street, Sydney. Find out more here.
Earning a second mention on this list, Peter Gilmore’s highly acclaimed restaurant Quay is a must-see for those looking for a lavish spot for a special celebration. With panoramic water views, the menu at Quay is best experiences with Peter’s Ten Course Menu (accompanied by a carefully curated Wine List by Fink Wine Director Amanda Yallop and Quay’s Head Sommelier Shanteh Wong). Soak in sparkling water views while sample rare and beautiful ingredients sources from local farmers, fishermen and producers. Expect serious attention to detail here, with even the selection of each ceramic dish carefully considered.
Find Quay at the Upper Level of the Overseas Passenger Terminal, The Rocks. Find out more here.
Chippendale’s neighbourhood casual fine diner Ester is the kind of spot to toast to a big achievement. This intimate dining room serves up some of Sydney’s best bar-meets-restaurants eats, designed to be shared and savoured over a bottle of wine. Expect everything from roasted rock oysters to raw kingfish with daikon and bush tomato as well as hearty mains such as grilled wagyu with potato dashi and whole flounder with saltbush and preserved lemon. To wash it all down, grab a glass of natural wine, pop a bottle of cellared bottles or wine or opt for a classic cocktail.
Find Ester at 46-52 Meagher Street, Chippendale. Find out more here.
For over 25 years, Catalina Rose Bay has been delighting Sydney diners with one of the best dining to celebrate a special occasion. Set on foreshore in the heart of Rose Bay, Catalina is undeniably one of the most popular spots to wine and dine by the water. With their kitchen from midday until late, this is the perfect spot to swing by for a celebration any time of day. On the menu, expect a refined selection of delicate entrees, hearty mains and even a lavish dessert menu to end your dining experience on a sweet note. Plus, Catalina offers a dedicated oyster menu, the perfect way to celebrate a special moment.
Find Catalina at 1 Sunderland Avenue, Rose Bay. For more information, click here.
Escape to the country without leaving the city the contemporary farm-to-table restaurant, Fred’s Paddington. Step off the bustling Oxford Street and walk into a light-filled dining room, made to celebrating every special moment. Fred’s open kitchen layout gives diners an intimate glimpse at the culinary action, showcasing the signature rustic cooking style of Head Chef Danielle Alvarez. With dishes cooked on an open-fire hearth, expect fresh dishes using farmed and fished produce long with an extensive wine list ranging from classic drops to obscure regions and varietals. Looking for the perfect spot for a nightcap? Head downstairs to the adjoining cocktail bar, Charlie Parker’s for a delicious drink to end the evening.
Find Fred’s at 380 Oxford Street, Paddington. For more information, click here.
Just a quick stroll from the city you’ll find the award-winning dining room, Automata. Headed up by Head Chef Clayton Wells, this top Sydney restaurant finds its home on the thriving Kensington Street precinct. Delivering an ever-changing menu of Australian-meets-European eats, expect a fuss-free menu of eats celebrating fresh local ingredients. This sleek industrial space proves the perfect spot to celebrate a big occasion, with a 5 course ($120) or 7 course ($145) set menu available to take the stress of our choosing what to order.
Find Automata at 5 Kensington Street, Chippendale. Find out more here.
As one of Sydney’s only dedicated fish eateries, Saint Peter is an upscale seafood restaurant made for sampling delicious eats in a relaxed atmosphere. Prepare to sample some of Australia’s best seafood, with a menu of rotating dishes designed to showcase only the freshest catches. Expect everything from charred octopus, 8-day aged Murrumbidgee Murray Cod plus an extensive selection of freshly shucked oysters. To pair with this seafood feast, sip your way through Saint Peters’ curated wine list with a selection of traditional and natural drops to choose from.
Find Saint Peter at 362 Oxford Street, Paddington. Find out more here.
Just a short drive from the city, you’ll find a stunning little dining room called Sixpenny. Finding its home in the heart of Stanmore, this elegant fine diner offers a curated tasting menu dining experience showcasing local, ethically sourced produce. Expect a refined selection of dishes using ingredients sources from small-scale farmers, fishermen and producers. As far as top notch dining experiences go, this is one of Sydney’s best.
Find Sixpenny at 83 Percival Road, Stanmore. Find out more here.