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Norma's Deli

  • Restaurants
  • Manly
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Recommended
  1. Delicious sandwich at Norma's Deli
    Photograph: Supplied
  2. Delicious food at Norma's Deli
    Photograph: Supplied
  3. A club sandwich at Norma's Deli
    Photograph: Avril Treasure
  4. Some take home Greek meals at Norma's Deli
    Photograph: Avril Treasure
  5. Cheeses at Norma's Deli
    Photograph: Avril Treasure

Time Out says

5 out of 5 stars

Norma's is Manly's all-in-one Mediterranean bakery, café, diner and grocer – and our idea of heaven

Monday Swimwear – the popular swimwear line by business entrepreneurs and beautiful people Natasha Oakley and Devin Brugman – got its name because the duo figured if you’re in a bikini on a Monday, life’s pretty good. It’s a Tuesday when we visit Norma’s Deli – the all-day bakery, café, diner and grocer in Manly – and while there isn’t a bikini in sight (it is winter, after all), there are a heck of a lot of Aperols. In fact, we count at least three tables with the trademark orange drink. Everyone around us looks relaxed and happy. Perhaps it’s because we’re close to the ocean (or, that people are in fact, actually on holidays) but it’s a vibe we can get on board with. Forget swimwear – we've decided that if you’re drinking an Aperol on a Tuesday at Norma’s, life’s pretty good.

Opened at the start of 2023 by the team behind next door's Butterboy and nearby Rollers Bakehouse, Norma’s Deli is named after owner James Sideris' grandmother. The all-day eatery is found at a sprawling site that sits just below the Corso. Longtime Manly and Northern Beaches locals will know the space well – for years it was usually a discount or less-than-average souvenir shop. So to see the area snapped up by good hands is like a breath of fresh, salty, gorgeous air.

Speaking of good looks, Norma herself is a ten – she's decked out in terrazzo with glass cabinets showing off make-your-tummy-rumble sweet and savoury snacks, well-priced sangas and thick slabs of pizza. The room is spacious and open plan, with both dining and takeaway areas. Along the side walls are shelves stocked with artisanal goods – everything from pasta sauces to pickles, hot sauce and natural wines. Fridges are chock-a-block with ripe cheeses, comforting meals and charcuterie. In other words, our idea of heaven.

People are lining up for take-home goods, all made in-house: spanakopita, Greek stuffed capsicums, moussaka, pastitso (a traditional Greek beef and pork ragu pasta bake) – as well as fresh loaves of sourdough and croissants, which are all baked in house daily. We’re here to sit in, and take a seat at the bar.

Sadly, a bittersweet Spritz isn’t on the cards for us today (it is a Tuesday, after all), though a grapefruit and holy basil drink more than quenches our thirst.

A pork souvlaki comes on a metal skewer that rests on a pillowy and still warm pitta. The pork is succulent, charred, and paired with a zippy tzatziki; verdant herb sauce with oregano and mint; crunchy and pickled onions that add sharpness, plus fresh cucumber. We remove the skewer and roll it up. It’s absolutely delicious, and can almost transport us to Greece, where our entire Instagram following seems to be at the moment. Reluctantly, we share half with our dining companion, noting to self that today was the day to dine alone.

A waiter walks past us with an enormous Caesar salad covered in a cloak of Parmesan cheese, a beautifully golden chook, and legit-looking Greek salad with a whole slab of feta. We love it here.

Norma's ‘Club Med’ sandwich, with a side of crisps, is put in front of us and shuts us up. It’s mighty big and a sight to behold, stacked with chicken, grilled halloumi, tomato, cucumber, sliced green olives and pancetta, on three slices of brown toasted bread. It’s a sandwich surfers would dream of, and one we enjoy, though we would have liked a vinegary mayo or sauce to add another dimension.

On the way out, we order a takeaway coffee (the beans are from Single O), plus a koulourakia (a Greek cookie traditionally eaten around Easter). It’s buttery, crumbly, has the perfect amount of sweetness, with a hint of vanilla and orange, and reminds us of the ones our grandmother used to bake.

We’ll be back to Norma’s Deli for the moussaka, and an Aperol, that’s for sure. And maybe another koulourakia. And the damn good pork souvlaki. See you next Tuesday, Norma. 


Heading to Manly? Check out our local's guide to the area

Hungry in Manly? Suss out the best restaurants in Manly, over here

Or eat your way through the best Greek food in Sydney

Avril Treasure
Written by
Avril Treasure


74/78 The Corso
View Website
Opening hours:
Daily 8am-5pm
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