The best toasties in Sydney
Two slices of bread, cheese and butter are the building blocks of the most comforting snack of all time, the toasted sandwich. From there you can stick to the classics – baked beans, tinned spaghetti, savoury mince, or the infallible combination of ham and tomato with cheese – or get crazy and wild with the fillings. There's basically nothing that doesn't taste good inside a hot pocket with cheese. If you're craving the simple pleasures of a jaffle, these are our favourite places to get them.
The best cocktail bars in Sydney
No one is pretending that cocktaisl are a cost-effective way to relax or party in Sydney. In a city where $20 a drink isn't an uncommon price tag, you really want to know that what's in your glass has been shaken and stirred by the best in the business. These are the places that you can always trust to give you a truly outstanding drink in exchange for your hard-eraned.
The best pubs in Sydney
A lot of beers were drunk, schnitzels eaten and trivia answered in the search for the best pubs Sydney has to offer. We honed our pool skills, got surprisingly accurate with darts, and busted some PBs at Big Buckhunter in the pursuit of the venue that ticked all the boxes; welcoming, great beers, good food, games, entertainment, inclusive and relaxed. There are a lot of rock-solid pubs in this city, and these are the pick of the bunch.
The best bars in Sydney
We scoured the city to find the best drinks, greatest chat, most perfectly crafted playlists, tastiest snacks and top vibes to be had in Sydney. We put our livers and our sleep patterns on the line to bring you, dear reader, a comprehensive guide to the best bars in town.
Sydney's best new bars and pubs
Sydney craft beer guide
Thanks to the boutique brewing boom, local watering holes are boasting seasonal brews on tap, craft breweries are opening up all over Sydney, and we have two annual festivals dedicated to all things craft beer. Here's where to get in on the sudsy fun.
The best underground bars in Sydney
The best pick up bars in Sydney
The best beer gardens in Sydney
The best pubs with fireplaces in Sydney
Bar crawls in Sydney by area
Some of the best drinking dens in the city are clustered inside the 2010 postcode, which means a sip trip around Surry Hills involves a whole lot more excellent cocktails, biodynamic wines and craft brews with a whole lot less trekking between venues.
Pubs in Balmain
Balmain is one of the most pub-dense suburbs in Sydney, thanks to its proud working class history as a working wharf and the place where the Australian Labor Party got their start. But times have changed and Balmain is now a well-heeled neck of the woods and many corner boozers have become homes and boutiques. However there are plenty of watering holes left for when you have a thirst that only a well-poured beer can quench, and these are our top picks.
There was a dark time, not so many years ago, when after work drinks were limited to huge booze barns with no soul and pubs. Those were your options. Fast forward less than a decade and the CBD now possesses an exceptional collection of bars, from underground tropical hideaways to booze attics with cocktail maestros at the helm. You can drink life-changing wines, the freshest ales and fruity elixirs made from seasonal harvests, and sometimes you can do it all in the same place. It's a big part of what makes Sydney awesome.
Not only is the Inner West home to many of the eccentric, creative and proudly rainbow tribes of Sydney, it's also where you'll find some of the best small bar action. Tiny little haunts slinging great drinks and keeping the vibes lively and local. If you don't have one already, your home-away-from-home is probably on this list.
Based on Instagram posts alone, you'd be forgiven for thinking Bondi was only about sunrise yoga, surfing and high intensity cardio session. But this beachfront 'burb also possesses an ace collection of bars for when the old exercise you want to be doing is bending the elbow.
A bar crawl in Newtown is the ultimate pick'n'mix for a parched Sydneysider. It's also great for anyone who would like the minimum travel time necessary between venues. Newtown's bars are all conveniently spaced along King Street and Enmore Road like some sort of boozy daisy chain, which means you can go from dog-friendly brewery bars to moody cocktail dens, neighbourhood wine bars, indie boltholes and rock-n-roll burger bars in no time at all. To make it even easier we've mapped out the best way to cram in all of Newtown's best bars in one hit.
The best bar snacks in the business
The best schnitzels in Sydney
Crumbed chicken breast or veal hammered out flat might sound like an incredibly simple dish, but there is an art to getting schnitzel right. The shell needs to be well-seasoned and to stick to the meat instead of falling off like an ill-fitting jacket. The meat needs to be cooked through but remain tender and juicy. And the quality of your sauce is a linchpin to the whole enterprise - good gravy is everything. We ate a lot of schnitzel to bring you this list – may our stomachs and waistbands have mercy on us.
The best pub pies in Sydney
A proper pub pie is a thing of beauty. It's the heart-warming pastry pocket that goes a treat with a freshly poured ale, and if you can eat it in front of an open fire, you've got yourself the ultimate winter hat-trick.
The best places for cheese and wine in Sydney
The Sydney venues for days when all you want to do is graze on a luxurious cheeseboard and put a solid dent in a bottle of wine while you catch up on the last few years, days or minutes of someone's life and discuss the age old question: washed rind vs hard cheese.
$10 steaks in Sydney
There's no tastier way to replenish your iron stores than with a juicy steak, and no cheaper way than with these steaks for ten bucks or less.
The best bar snacks in Sydney
As the line between restaurant and bar becomes increasingly blurry, it's now possible to make a whole meal out of the excellent bar snacks flying over the counter at our favourite haunts. These are the places we head when we're not sure if drinks is going to turn into dinner, but we want to keep our options open.
You might also like...
Guess who's back
Everyone from Steve Manfredi to Paul Merrony and even (in his youth) Matt Moran has been through the kitchen of The Paddington Inn. But its history is deeper than that – in 1860, the beloved hotel played host to the first ever meeting of the Paddington Council. For the last 30 years, the Paddington institution has been under the watchful eye of the family-owned nightlife empire Solotel. In the last six months, the pub, like Paddington itself, has been undergoing some major changes, and will reopen on September 8. It's been fully renovated by George Livissianis, the man behind the gorgeous décor at Cho Cho San, and the revived Dolphin Hotel, and now houses a new bar and dining room. And to go with the new look there's a whole new menu. Seasonal, produce-drive, simple and gorgeous, it's been created by head chef Justin Schott, a man who's arrived at the Paddington Inn via Rockpool and Kitchen by Mike. "We’re making as much in-house as possible – we are dry ageing the duck, and we’ll make our own cotechino as well as focaccia and gingerbread daily," Schott says. An à la carte restaurant at the back of the venue will be accompanied by more casual fare at the front bar. That menu is inspired by classic pub grub, with an elegant update. “The new kitchen will be open plan so diners will see it all going on. I can’t wait to get moving and add to the innovative food history of The Paddington Inn.” As well as a significant and interesting wine list, cocktails also play a starring r
Two countries, two cultures, seven cities: one festival
Confluence Festival of India in Australia is the most significant showcase of Indian arts and culture ever to be staged in Australia, taking place in seven cities across the country between August and November 2016. The festival program includes world-class dance, theatre and music as well as conferences and workshops on Indian innovation, politics and sport. Events are scheduled in Adelaide, Alice Springs, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. One of the festival’s key components is fostering bilateral ties, with joint performances and collaborations between Indian and Australian artists and thinkers.
Whether you’re still on your training wheels or you’re the next Robbie McEwen or Cadel Evans, the Spring Cycle is an event perfect for you. Proudly supported by Roads and Maritime Services and open to cyclists of all ages and abilities, The Spring Cycle is the ultimate city fun-ride. With ride options of 12km, 50km and 105km, each route guarantees riders the chance to cycle across Sydney’s iconic Harbour Bridge completely traffic-free! Say goodbye to the confines of cycling lanes and revel in car-less lanes as you cross the magnificent Harbour, bypassing the Opera House and zipping through the Rocks and Barangaroo. Starting in St Leonards Park and finishing up in either Pyrmont (12km ride) or Olympic Park (50km and 105km), enjoy post-ride entertainment as you relax and unwind in the presence of friends and family. Enter as a team, individually or take your kids free of charge. Early bird tickets are on sale now (end Aug 31).
Broadway Sydney's flash new second floor is open for business
If you’ve visited Broadway Sydney any time within the last year, you would’ve noticed that Level 2 has been undergoing a serious makeover. And now, after 12 months of redevelopment works and an expansion of 3,400 square metres, it’s finally been unveiled! The doors swung open on August 18 and the $55 million redevelopment is now showing off 30 new retailers in food, fashion and beauty. International brands you can now find at Broadway include H&M, Sephora, Victoria’s Secret, Seed Heritage, Sunglass Hut, Calvin Klein Underwear, Napoleon Perdis and many more. If all that shopping has given you an appetite, you can sate it at Passiontree Velvet teahouse; Din Tai Fung; Zeus Street Greek; Chinese food experts Mr Wu; Turkish food kings Eat Istanbul; and Vietnamese street food vendors Bun Me, alongside familiar favourites like Soul Origin, Nando’s, Grill’d Healthy Burgers, Schnitz, Guzman Y Gomez, Hero Sushi and Cha Time. The newly renovated Level 2 is also pretty to look at – it's adorned in contemporary Australian art from Four Sydney-based creatives – illustrator and silkscreen printer Kate Banazi, emerging furniture designer Vincent Buret, textiles artist Victoria Garcia, and industrial designer Adam Goodrum.