Some love 'em and some hate 'em, but either way, truffles (the pungent, forest-dwelling kind, not the chocolatey rum-laced kind) have embedded themselves into the consciousness of Sydney's dining scene as the ultimate wintery delicacy.
So where should you go to find the best truffle-based dishes? Devon Café has launched a truffle menu at its Surry Hills, Barangaroo and North Sydney locations, featuring an array of dishes to lure in the truffle fanatics among us. The truffle mie goreng is the perfect blend of luxury and accessibility, with fresh egg noodles, asian mushrooms, porcini bumbu, chicccaron, a softly poached egg, and of course, shaved truffle ($35). If you'd rather drink your winter warmth, the gianduja latte blends chocolate, hazelnut, and comes infused with rich, toasted flavours ($7.50). Or, go the whole hog, and order an entire truffle brunch experience ($69) which gets you a taste of all of the above, as well as truffle curly fries, and a truffle ice cream served with a truffle honey sponge. For other infused sweet treats, try out Black Star Pastry's wintery 'truffle' – it's made of choux pastry and filled with black truffle, hazelnut praline custard and dusted with cacao to finish.
In the CBD, you can head to Republic Dining to add truffles to any dish on the menu (a service also offered at picture-perfect Darlinghurst café, the Mayflower) and try a rotating menu of truffle-based specials, including truffled oysters mornay, and beef cheek with shaved truffles and a truffled pomme puree by the side.
Further west in Lindfield, Goodfields Café has launched a new, truffle-centric menu of its own. The truffle toastie is top of our list of fungi-based goodness to try: it's stacked with triple cheese, ham, truffle cheese sauce, and fresh, shaved truffle all housed inside a housemade sliced croissant loaf ($29.50). If that's still not indulgent enough for you, the cheesy lobster comes with thick cut chips doused in a truffle-cheese sauce ($36).
While the wintery umami flavour of truffles is a natural complement to breakfast foods, there's a place for their earthy flavours at the dinner table, too. New Shanghai, a bustling Chinese restaurant with outposts in the CBD, Ashfield and Chatswood Chase, has incorporated truffles into a new winter menu, infusing the flavours of black truffles into fried rice ($19.90), potstickers ($16.90) and xiao long bao ($12.90). If that's not enough to get you started in the world of the 'black diamond', we don't know what will be.