When it comes to hot weather outdoor dining, nothing beats golden, fried chips and a piece of fish. But what makes a really excellent fish supper? It's the quality of the batter through to the cut of the chip, the seasonings and sauces – are you for ketchup, vinegar, chicken salt, tartare of straight lemon juice. There’s a lot that goes into getting it just right, so we scoured the city to put together a list of ten the best to help you net the perfect catch.
Sydney's best fish and chips
This long-standing fish and chipper is right across the road from Balmoral Beach, and it’s perpetually busy no matter the weather. They use only MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) approved fish here, which means that it’s come from sustainable sources. New Zealand hake, battered to order, is the centrepiece of the fish and chips – both of which need the pep of some vinegar to liven things up. The real winner is the calamari, which is lightly crumbed and buttery. Stroll across the road and watch the waves roll in while you eat, or if you prefer the feel of grass under your feet, there’s a park right next door.
Bondi’s Best is true to its moniker. The fish to beer batter ratio here is just right, and the hoki fillets are tender inside their golden crust. Punchy tartare is the perfect counterpoint to the crumbed calamari. If you’re thinking about your beach body there’s also an entire menu dedicated to sushi. BB’s has the whole stretch of the 2026 postcode covered, with the original North Bondi store as well as ritzier digs in Hall Street. You can eat in at either, but with one of the world’s most iconic stretches of coastline a stone’s throw away, it’d be almost criminal not to go al fresco.
A place that’s been around for over 30 years must be doing something right. Ocean Foods is an Inner West institution, selling fresh and cooked seafood. The fish used in the fish and chips changes daily depending on the suppliers and is battered using a family recipe that’s been passed down through the generations. The result is a light, crisp coating that doesn’t dominate the flavour of the fish. Of course, we’re still going to add a little chicken salt to the chips and calamari. The extensive menu here covers old school classics like battered savs and seafood sticks (long may they live!) and is as cheap as chips. Do as the locals do and grab a box, sit out on the balcony and watch the world go by.
There’s always a throng of people waiting to get their fix at this Clovelly corner spot. She’s not very big, but she packs them in - then out the door and onto the footpath. The battered Pacific cod comes with a bubbly crust that snaps under your fingers. We’ll skip the calamari next time and order a generous side of chips with chicken salt. If you’d rather eat from the land than the sea, the burgers here have reached near cult status for good reason. Give your gut a real workout and finish things off with a deep-fried Mars Bar. The fish and chips come wrapped in paper, proper old-school like, so you can cart them down the hill to the beach.
When we got wind that a British-style chippy – appropriately named the Traditional Chip Shop – had arrived in Bondi Junction, we had one question: Would it be an authentic interpretation, or fall back into the Aussie palate's safety net? On first glance, they seem to tilt towards the former – diners can choose from cod, haddock or scampi for their supper. It lends a dash of authenticity to the proceedings, if not sustainability; we'd love to see a sustainable Aussie breed on the menu for the sake of ethics, and the planet. The extensive menu includes steak and kidney pies and puds, battered sausages and black and white puddings, but really, there’s one thing you should
Sustainable seafood purveyors Fish & Co have moved from Annandale into their new home in Harold Park’s Tramsheds, where they’re as popular as ever. These guys are deeply concerned with the provenance of their products, and ensuring that there’s still plenty of fish left in the sea for future generations. Strips of New Zealand hoki come coated in a golden beer batter that’s a little on the thick side but still has a nice snap. You can jazz things up by substituting regular fries for sweet potato chips. . Those wanting a break from tradition can choose from options like mackerel fish cakes and panko crumbed tiger prawns. Eat in if you’re feeling fancy, or for a cheaper option, grab takeaway and find a spot outside in the sun.
Part of the Merivale stable, the Fish Shop is more high-end than your local chippy - there’s definitely no eating with your hands here. The Potts Point diner is more about your refined, beachside-chic and the fish and chips here are equally classy. Beer battered flathead is perfectly handled and accompanied by crunchy, house-made fries and bang on tartare. The potato cake is also ace: fluffy, crisp and salty in equal measure. You won’t find crumbed calamari here; instead, there’s cuttlefish with lemon, chilli and parsley on offer. For those who aren’t fans of the fry, there are raw and cured fish options too.
If you look closely at that menu stuck up in the window of Saint Peter you'll notice there's a takeaway option. That's right, this fancy seafood restaurant is totally happy to box you up their daily fish and chips and save you the wait time for a table. The fish in question changes with what's fresh and available, but on our visit it's tender lengths of pink ling from Bermagui on the southern NSW coast, and each piece wears a crunchy armour of batter that trails off into little crisp tendrils. The chips are the hand-cut, skin on variety and have a proper, soft potato quality rather than those firm, yellow planks you might be used to. And there's no chicken salt here. Instead you get a wedge of lemon and a traditional tartare sauce that they tart up with natural yoghurt in place of the mayonnaise.
This unassuming joint in Naremburn is reminiscent of the chippies of yore. The menu runs the whole gamut, from fish and chips to seafood baskets (the lucky-dip of the sea), Chiko Rolls, and crab claws. The New Zealand cod used for the fish and chips is plump and juicy and they chicken-salt their chips here. Go retro and add some deep-fried pineapple for a sweet sidekick. Like the name, the prices here are old fashioned too. Anywhere you can order quality fish and chips and walk away with change from a tenner is a winner in our books.
There are more options for fish and chips in Manly than you can throw a thong at, but Fishmongers stands out from the crowd. Hoki is dunked in a light tempura batter that enhances rather than competes with the flavour of the fish. To the side are excellent hand-cut chips that are streets ahead of the usual fare. Deep fried strips of sweet potato on top add some extra crunch. These guys also try to do the right thing by our ocean friends by selling MSC certified seafood. Get your order to go and head over the road to the beach, because everything tastes better looking out over the big blue.
As the name suggests, the team behind Love Fish are passionate about seafood, especially sustainable, locally sourced seafood. Order fish and chips here and you’ll get beer battered NSW tiger flathead to go alongside twice cooked chips. The fish is cooked to perfection and the batter to fillet ratio is spot on. The chips suffer a little from their second dunk, but are still a tasty accompaniment, as is the house-made tartare, which has a solid horseradish kick. The fresh, panko-crumbed calamari hits the spot too - tender, not chewy. Ethical eating here goes beyond the food; all of the packaging used is either biodegradable or compostable. Eat in or takeaway at the Rozelle location, or look out over the harbour at their new Barangaroo digs.
There’s no ocean view on busy Botany Road; instead, this chippy relies on top-notch food to draw in a crowd. Kiwi Style Fish and Chips serves a steady stream of locals, as well as tradies needing hard-labour fuel. The owners experimented with different kinds of white fish for their battered fish before settling on cape capensis from the Atlantic. The result is a succulent, flaky flesh that holds up well in the deep-fryer. Opt for kumara chips (as our Kiwi cousins like to call them), and you’ll get deliciously sweet batons on the side. The potato scallops are just as they should be: pillowy inside and crunchy on the outside. This place is a trans-Tasman win we can all be happy about.