Double Bay is one of Sydney’s most exclusive postcodes. A glitzy harbourside suburb, it features multi-million dollar homes, upscale designer boutiques and the iconic Murray Rose Pool on Redleaf Beach. It also now has a vibrant bar and restaurant scene that caters equally to the well to do and a younger, hip crowd – thanks in part to celebrity restauranteurs like Neil Perry and Bill Granger, who both run venues there. Incorporating a wide range of cuisines from Brazilian and Mexican to Thai and Indian, the choice and quality of restaurants in Double Bay is up there with anything Surry Hills and Potts Point can offer. If you are yet to sample the culinary delights on offer in this part of Sydney, outlined below is a selection of some of Double Bay’s best restaurants you should dine at.
After a glittering career that has spanned almost 40 years, celebrated chef Neil Perry opened his first-ever solo restaurant. Situated in Double Bay, on the corner of Bay Street and Guilfoyle, Margaret is an exceptional fine dining restaurant that was named after his late mother. Offering a menu that focuses on Mediterranean and Asian flavours, albeit with an Australian twist, Margaret is a very refined space that cost $5 million to fit out. Accommodating 120 people inside and a further 50 outside, it is open for dinner from Wednesday through to Sunday. With most of the gourmet dishes being priced at less than $50, and a top-notch bottle of wine setting you back $85, it is the perfect venue to go to for a celebratory night out.
Fancy a culinary journey to the Amalfi Coast? Well, that is exactly what you will be taken on at Matteo Double Bay. Taking inspiration from the Campania region of Southern Italy, the flavours, energy and vibe at this fantastic venue on Bay Street is unmistakably Azurri. Specialising in a menu that features handmade pasta, locally grown tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and local seafood, the food is inventive and delicious. Featuring a wide range of antipasti, secondi, pasta and pizza dishes, Matteo pushes the envelope with creations like vodka Rigatoni Pasta, Black Ink Mafadine Cuttlefish and Pappardelle Truffle Veal shining from the menu. Presented in a refined and elegant setting, the service here is outstanding too.
All of Bill Granger’s restaurants are designed to reflect the spirit of what it means to be Australian – namely sunny, easy-going and generous. His venture in Cross Street, simply known as ‘Bills’ is no different. Set within a refined, elegant and casual space, that is decked out with minimalist works of art and tan leather seating, the breakfast menu at Bill’s features all his classics, like ricotta hotcakes, and scrambled eggs on sourdough and the iconic sweet corn fritters. In addition, items like the buckwheat bowl and mixed seed bircher are add interesting new dimensions to it. Open every day from 7 am to 10 pm, the lunch and dinner menus showcase such gastronomic delights as a prawn burger with a lemongrass dressing and grilled lobster. If you are looking for a venue to impress someone on date night, this is a great place to go.
One of the most popular restaurants on Bay Street, Sinaloa is a contemporary Mexican Restaurant and Bar where the good times roll! Taking its name from the Mexican state which is much loved for its fantastic ingredients and delicious flavours, the menu at Sinaloa is designed to be shared with your friends. Curated by Axell Torres, the very talented head Chef, it features contemporary dishes that will delight your tastebuds. To support their food menu, they have a huge range of tequila and mezcal, as well as beers, wines and an inventive selection of signature and classic cocktails. Be sure to come here on Taco Thursday when this lively Hacienda bar really hits its straps. On Friday and Saturday nights, there are also DJs and other live entertainment too.
Open Monday to Friday from 4.30 pm until late, as well as Saturday from midday, the Bibo Wine Bar is one of the trendiest establishments in Double Bay. Born from a collaboration between the former head chef from Guillaume at Bennelong, and the former restaurant manager at Guillaume Paddington, the Bibo Wine Bar is a stylish and relaxed venue that offers high-quality Mediterranean food, which has a distinct focus on Portuguese flavours and French Michellin star technique. Pairing a great selection of wines with their upscale plates, the venue is very popular among local foodies and oenophiles. If you are looking for somewhere to go for a special occasion, this fabulous Bay Street establishment is well worth a visit.
Situated within the Intercontinental Hotel on Cross Street, the Sake Restaurant and Bar is one of the most popular Japanese eateries in the Eastern suburbs. Dominated by a central, communal 24-seat table, and replete with both viola calacatta marble and a feature wall that runs from the open kitchen to its sushi and cocktail bars, the venue offers style in spades. The exciting food menu at the Sake Restaurant and Bar showcases a thrilling mix of new and inventive sushi styles. It also presents much-loved classics that have been cooked on special binchoban charcoal, over a Japanese Robata grill, which was specially built for the venue. As you would expect, the sake and drinks menu here is very good too.
Nestled on Kiaora Lane, within the heart of Double Bay’s vibrant dining precinct, Little Jean is a chic, airy and light-filled cafe that features impressive modern decor. Presenting a gourmet breakfast menu, as well as a delicious range of mains for lunch and dinner the venue champions the best in fresh and seasonal produce through the contemporary dishes they offer. Committed to sustainability, Little Jean sources a lot of its ingredients from local markets. Beautifully plated, their meals are works of art that just as appealing to your eyes as they are to your taste buds. Open every day from 7 am to 9 pm, the service here is polite, warm and attentive, while the ambience is casual and relaxed.
Inspired by a decor that represents 1930s Shanghai, China Diner proffers a new and contemporary approach to Asian dining. Creating vibrant and aromatic dishes that honour its heritage, this popular venue is tucked in between The Sheaf and Bake Bar on Kiaora Lane. Providing a feast for all your senses, China Diner specialises in a delicious range of dumplings. Their menu also features Cantonese inspired meat, seafood and vegan dishes, which they match with an exceptional wine, cocktail and sake list. For those who like al fresco dining, you can choose to eat outside, although the restaurant also has cosy booths inside on which you can sit on. If you would prefer to eat at home, you can even order from a separate takeaway section.
Over on Cross Street, Bedouin is a delightful Lebanese restaurant and cocktail bar that dishes up mouthwatering traditional middle eastern food. Inspired by a family heritage that spans three generations, the venue is arguably one of Sydney’s best-kept secrets. Offering two separate group booking menus – one of which is fully vegetarian, as well as a fantastic a la carte menu which has a number of salads, hot and cold Mezza and dishes from the grill, the aromatic dishes Bedouin offers come out sizzling. You can choose to pair them with a nice range of cocktails, champagne, wines or spirits, and as the venue is open until 3 am on Friday and Saturday, you can drink them well into the early hours.
Craving some spicy Asian food? Then head on over to the Spice Market. For over a decade now it has provided Sydney foodies with a Thai Restaurant experience like no other. Located on New South Head Road, directly over the road from the cinema, this intimate hole-in-the-wall style restaurant offers a fabulous menu of soups, curries, noodles, stir-fries, fish dishes and salads that are as good as anything else you will find in Sydney. While the choice at the Spice Market is wide, don’t visit here without trying the incredible lamb and pumpkin massaman curry and banana flower salad, both of which are to die for. Overall, the service at the restaurant is fast and friendly, while the buzzy atmosphere only enhances your dining experience.
Another popular Asian restaurant on the New South Head Road is the Chinta Kechil. Specialising in a delicious range of Malay, Indian and Chinese fusion cooking, this impressive restaurant is set on a colourful roof terrace which features a showpiece central Buddha altar. Easily described as comfort food, the deliciously moorish Parker Gems and Ella’s Wraps are two finger food starters at Chinta Kechil you simply won’t be able to get enough of. For mains, they also offer a terrific range of prawn dishes, as well as a wide selection of meat curries that are bursting with flavour. The venue isn’t big by any stretch, incorporating 16 seats at small tables and benches, but the quality of the food and overall ambience more than makes up for it.
Arte Bianca is undoubtedly one of the most popular Italian restaurants in Double Bay. Serving up a delightful selection of Sicilian-inspired pizzas and the most exquisite house-made pasta, this fabulous Bay Street eatery offers dine-in, takeaway and delivery. If you choose to dine at Arte Bianca, the restaurant has an intimate street dining area which is perfect for people-watching. While inside it is a bright, white and very relaxed space that holds a lovely atmosphere. In support of their extensive and varied food menu, there is also a fabulous range of wines available for you to try. The restaurant can often get very busy, so it is always a good idea to make a reservation beforehand.
If you are looking for a restaurant that offers something a little bit different, then Circa could well be it. Located on Knox Street, within the Cosmopolitan Shopping Centre, this venue is a self-confessed seafood and rosé-centric restaurant + bar. Offering flavours which have been inspired by the experiences and gastronomy of Japan and South East Asia, Circa presents an open seafood bar and signature rosé that can be enjoyed indoors, or at charming street-side seating. Showcasing a mix of classic dishes and newer, inventive choices, the food menu celebrates local, fresh and sustainable ingredients. Some of its most popular dishes include the snow crab pasta and truffled wagyu tataki. While their ‘Eight Ball’ chocolate ganache and ‘Bonsia’ bavarois are two desserts you simply have to try!