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Christmas in July

Because it's the only sensible time for a roast in Sydney

Photograph: Neal Whitehouse Piper

Christmas in July makes perfect sense in Sydney, since it’s finally cold enough to enjoy having the oven on for hours, wearing ugly knitted jumpers and eating dense fruit cake served in a literal ring of brandy fire. But if you’re not quite up to hosting, gather your tribe and hit up one of these festive feasts.

The Local Taphouse

Grab your friends (10 to 30 of them) and book a traditional roast dinner at Darlo's original craft beer hall. You need to order and pay in advance, and then kick back with no stress or money talk to mar an evening of rare breed pork belly (or lamb, beef, fish, or chicken) with your choice of three sides. If you roll with a meat-free crew, they even have a vegetarian option.

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Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel

The winter feast menu at this easterly outpost kicks off on weekends with mulled wine, followed by roast Kurobuta Pork with sides of rosemary and sea salt potatoes, parsnip, and Yorkshire puddings. Finish off your meal with sticky date pudding for dessert. Try and book a table for sunset and pretend you’re doing Christmas in Europe by the sea.

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Watsons Bay


What this cosy Balmain bar does differently with their Sunday roasts is that they break down a whole beast and roast up potions for two or four people. This means you get roasted meat for your entire party, plus salad, Yorkshire puddings and roasted veggies. The portions are available on a first come first serve basis so if you’re a picky eater you’d better aim for right on noon, and you can reserve a table online.

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Tommy's Beer Cafe

Really get into the Bavarian spirit with a whole pig on the spit at Tommy’s Beer Cafe. You can book for up to 24 of your nearest and dearest for a buffet that includes snacks, salads, breads and sides to accompany your whole hog, and it’s served by their house chef in a private room, so prepare for the least stressful dinner party you’re ever going to host.

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This Christmas in July celebration will leave your heart feeling as full your stomach because while you eat your fill of roast turkey galantine, red wine braised lamb shank, and Christmas cake ice cream you can contribute to the reverse Christmas tree where guests leave warm clothes and blankets for children that will go to the Salvation Army.

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PJ O'Brien's

PJ O’Brien’s is hosting a Christmas in July feast every Wednesday so that you can gorge on turkey or roast pork, or a bean and lentil shepherd’s pie if you’re veggo. It’s a three-course meal, but if you’re booking for ten or more you can name your day and they’ll sort you out.

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The Riverview

Who amongst us has the ability to cook a whole suckling pig in our unreliable rental property ovens? That’s why you pay the professionals at the Riverside Hotel to cater to a minimum of ten of your mates with pizza bread starters followed by tender pork with roast potatoes, roast pumpkin, sauerkraut, seasonal veggies and sauces.

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More ways to escape the elements

101 things to do indoors

Get out and undercover with our guide to indoor activities, from entertainment parks to sport and fitness, classes and talks and cultural venues that are warm and dry all year round. Because fresh air is overrated...

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By: Time Out editors