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  • Coogee
  1. Steak at Yana
    Photograph: Supplied/Yana
  2. Fish getting cooked over an open flame at Yana
    Photograph: Supplied/Yana
  3. A cosy corner at Yana
    Photograph: Supplied/Yana
  4. Bread, kingfish and scallops at Yana
    Photograph: Avril Treasure

Time Out says

This 120-seat coastal restaurant celebrates food cooked over an open flame, and the farmers behind the excellent produce

Yana stands for ‘you are not alone’. It’s a fitting name for a restaurant designed to bring the community together. The concept was spearheaded by chef Sam Lane (ex-The Corner House) who wanted to recreate the feeling of sitting around a campfire, telling stories and tucking into delicious, honest food. This is pretty much what you can expect to find at the new 120-seater in Coogee. Though, you can forget about the dirt – located a shell’s throw from the beach on the main promenade, Yana is chic, decked out with sandy tones, warm wood and exposed brick. If camping had a stylish eastern suburbs’ sister, this would be it.

The fire is there alright. It’s in the centre of the open kitchen, and you can smell the smoky notes when walking in. Nearly everything on the menu has been licked by an open flame – even the house-made focaccia – imparting a char and another dimension.

At Yana, Lane wants to celebrate local produce, and he’s passionate about working with farmers directly. On the menu you’ll see chooks from Altitude Farms near Orange, beef from Dandaraga Springs in the Southern Highlands and barramundi from Humpty Doo in the Northern Territory. Honey, which appears as a sweetener in a couple of dishes – including a starter of halloumi, lemon zest, pepper berry and oregano – comes from Lane’s dad’s bees, Hasty Tasty Honey, in Bendigo.

Other starter highlights include beef tartare with oregano verde, house-made chips, and soft herbs; whole king prawns with ’nduja butter and lemon; and roast cauliflower with romesco sauce, chive oil and almonds. Mains span a whole market fish, charred on the outside and succulent on the inside, and served with burnt lemon; a golden chicken with chilli butter and heirloom carrots; and a 1kg T-bone with a zingy herb sauce. Sides also get the flame treatment, like wood-fired broccolini with whipped ricotta.

Cocktails are fun and fruity. Go for the Yana Spritz with passionfruit, lemon, agave, prosecco and soda; the Hot Summer with vodka, kiwi, lime and chilli; or for a salty twist on the original, the Oyster Shell Martini. There are a handful of bottles of wine for $50, which gets a big tick.

Yana deliverers on honest, delicious food. Let’s hope the community gets around it for the years and stories to come.


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Avril Treasure
Written by
Avril Treasure


244 Coogee Bay Rd
Opening hours:
Tue-Thu 4pm-midnight; Fri-Sat noon-midnight; Sun noon-midnight
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