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Prawns at Cirrus
Photograph: Anna Kucera

Where to eat seafood in Sydney

Thanks to our vast coastline Australia is a travel destination for seafood fans. Here’s where to get the best from the big blue in Sydney

By Emily Lloyd-Tait
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Sydney is a seafood city – we love our fish and chips, we've got one of the biggest seafood markets in the country and everyone is going nuts for poke.

So where are the best restaurants for eating the ocean's gifts? Whether you want to get around a whole mud crab at Mr Wong or try fish offal at Saint Peter, these are the best seafood restaurants in Sydney. 

RECOMMENDED: Our guide to the 50 best Sydney restaurants

Sydney's best seafood restaurants

Saint Peter food overview
Photograph: Supplied/Saint Peter

1. Saint Peter

Restaurants Seafood Paddington

When you sit down at the beautiful marble topped counter that runs the length of the new-look Paddington eatery it’s not a simple matter of ‘what do you want to eat?’, but rather, ‘what can you not afford to miss?’. Fill your space with seafood charcuterie, followed by a perfect piece of dry-aged fish, with their famous tart for dessert.

Interior at Cirrus
Photograph: Anna Kucera

2. Cirrus

Restaurants Seafood Barangaroo

Some of the city's top cooking talent is in the kitchen here at Barangaroo, and unlike the other restaurants in the Bentley Group stable, they're focussing all their attention on seafood. But forget a lemon wedge, here your prawns wome with smoked curd and ginger; your scallops woth pomelo and parsley; and your trout with XO, cucumber and sour cream.

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Inside restaurant at Ormeggio
Photograph: Supplied/Ormeggio

3. Ormeggio at the Spit

Restaurants Italian Mosman

Ormeggio at the Spit is now a seafood restaurant. The new direction is inspired by Pavoni’s affection for the culinary style of the Southern Italian region of Puglia (the heel of the boot). It’s all about seafood, cheese and vegetables, with crudos made from wild caught fish.

Golden Century food overview
Photograph: Anna Kucera

4. Golden Century

Restaurants Haymarket

You can’t call yourself a true Sydneysider unless you’ve had at least one post-rager dinner here. But if you're here for an occasion, it’s what’s in the tanks that counts, and it’s a collection of crazy fresh live seafood. Don’t even try pretending you’ll get out of here without an order of pippies in XO sauce. They show you your catch in a bag on its way to the kitchen and then mere moments later those little briny bivalves have burst open to luxuriate in the unctuous, savoury seafood sauce.It's a Sydney rite of passage.

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Waiters rushing around in a dining room
Photograph: Daniel Boud

5. Mr Wong

Restaurants Chinese Sydney

Dim sum doesn't get much better than this luxe Cantonese dining room. Come for lunch and enjoy your seafood in beautiful, two-bite parcels, like scallop and prawn shumai, crystal prawn and snow pea, king prawn and bamboo shoot, and lobster and scallop.

Oysters at Gaku Robata
Photograph: Anna Kucera

6. Gaku Robata Grill

Restaurants Japanese Darlinghurst

Like many of Tokyo's beloved dinner spots, Gaku is tiny, and a little chaotic, with smoke form the robata grill mixed in amongst cheery greetings and people crammed in for their beautiful hand rolls, sashimi, and grilled snacks.

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Bright interiors of Mimi's
Photograph: Daniel Boud

7. Mimi's

Restaurants Modern Australian Coogee

Mimi’s takes up the majority of the second floor in the new era Coogee Pavilion. You won’t be the only one ordering from the live seafood menu that includes market price mud crab and sea urchin. And bumps of caviar are delivered to your table on a dedicated cart, with accompanying frozen vodka so that you feel like you own a private jet, even if you can’t take it anywhere.

Fish and chips at FICH
Photograph: Cassandra Hannagan

8. Fich at Petersham

Restaurants Seafood Petersham

Fich at Petersham is definitely nicer than your average suburban fish and chip shop. It’s split in two – on one side you’ve got a counter for ordering takeaway and perusing the ready-made salads. Over the divide is a clean, white dining room with a single giant fish on one wall and Norah Jones on the stereo, where the menu stretches from fist-sized potato scallops with tomato sauce all the way to a ceviche of the day or tender calamari strips that are scored to soak in more of the garlic and chilli oil they are bathed in.

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Oysters at The Morrison Bar & Oyster Room
Photograph: Supplied

9. The Morrison Bar & Oyster Room

Restaurants The Rocks

Freshly shucked, just as nature intended, is how to eat your oysters here, because the less you do to an excellent oyster, the better. They are serious about their molluscs. Creamy Sydney rock oysters come in from all across New South Wales – Wallis Lake, Port Stephens, Lake Wapengo, Pambula, Merimbula and Womboyn River – and the big briny Pacifics they bring in from Smoky Bay, Coffin Bay and Port Douglas in South Australia, plus Little Swanport and St Helens in Tasmania.

Crab at Queen's Hotel
Photograph: Anna Kucera

10. Queens Hotel

Bars Pubs Enmore

What to order: Mud crab

How much? Market price

How is it served: Typhoon shelter crab, a style famously made at the Under Bridge Spicy Crab restaurant in Hong Kong’s Wan Chai district, gets a Sydney edition in this beautiful second storey dining room above a pub in Enmore. They deep fry the crab with garlic, chilli and black bean and then add the fried pulp from housemade soy milk for crunch.

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View of Bondi Beach at North Bondi Fish
Photograph: Anna Kucera

11. North Bondi Fish

Restaurants Bondi North

What to order: Fish and chips

How much? $32

How are they served: No Sydney visit is complete without a serve of fish and chips by the beach. If it can be a piece of flathead, armoured in a crunchy beer batter and served with tartare sauce on the side, the more the better. And for the real A-list treatment, eating it while enjoying some of the most famous beach views in the city is a very good way to go.

Want more seafood?

A top down shot of fried fish and chips with a side of mushy gre
Photograph: Anna Kucera

The best fish and chips in Sydney

Restaurants Seafood

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.

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