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A box of vegetables shot from above
Photograph: Supplied

The best produce boxes in Sydney right now

Top restaurants and bars across town are giving us big reasons to skip the supermarket

By Matty Hirsch
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There’s a reason dining out in our fair city is so damn good. Yes, a lot of it has to do with dynamite talent in the kitchen, but in the words of Neil Perry: “The cornerstone of good cooking is to source the finest produce.”

More often than not, chefs have access to remarkably fresh, hyper-seasonal vegetables and fruits, in addition to just-caught fish and livestock that have been raised with a great deal of care – and these are things you just don’t find roaming the aisles of the big retailers. 

We’re all spending a lot more time at home these days, but that doesn’t mean we should be sacrificing quality when it comes to what lands on the dinner table. In fact, there’s never been a better time to get creative on the pots and pans while supporting your locals at the same time. Some of our favourite places to get watered and fed are doing their part to ensure the livelihood of their suppliers by supplying us with the highest quality ingredients. These are the best of the bunch.

Want to learn cooking from some of the greats? Tune into Instagram for lessons from the likes of Maggie Beer and Neil Perry.

Need a bottle of wine to go with dinner? These are the best Sydney bottle shops offering home delivery.

The best produce boxes money can buy

An unpacked box of fresh produce and pantry staples on a table at Dear Sainte Eloise
An unpacked box of fresh produce and pantry staples on a table at Dear Sainte Eloise
Photograph: Supplied

Dear Sainte Éloise

Bars Wine bars Potts Point

How much? $100
Pick-up or delivery? Collect from the venue between 3-8pm Wed and Fri
How to order? Call 02 9326 9745 or email hello@dearsainteeloise.com
The Potts Point wine bar is putting together hampers plied with provisions. What’s included each week depends on supply, but you can expect local vegetables, a loaf of bread, housemade pasta from CBD sister restaurant, Ragazzi, and other staples like rice, cured meats, cheese, tinned tomatoes, farm eggs and a roll or two of toilet paper. Just try not to blow the rest of your savings on a bottle of from the extensive natural wine list when you pop by.

A box of  fresh fruit shot from above
A box of  fresh fruit shot from above
Photograph: Supplied

Merivale

How much? $60, $65, $100 or $150
Pick-up or delivery? Sydney-wide delivery on Thursdays
How to order? Click here
Trust one of the nation’s largest hospitality operators to roll out an almighty selection of goods from its premium suppliers. Parisi is taking care of the fruit and vegetable boxes, which hold everything from avocados to zucchini, including goodies like Christmas melons and Fuyu persimmons. On the seafood side, Poulous Bros are packing boxes that include live mussels, rock oysters and fillets of fish, while Havericks is in charge of meats and offering Angus mince, and rump, sirloin and T-bone steaks. Fred’s head chef Danielle Alvarez has written recipes to accompany each box, so you won’t be stuck for inspiration.

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A marble table full of fresh fruits and vegetables at Monopole.
A marble table full of fresh fruits and vegetables at Monopole.
Photograph: Supplied

Monopole

Restaurants Modern Australian Sydney

How much? $60
Pick-up or delivery? Pick-up on Sat and Sun between 10am and 5pm
How to order? Email info@monopolesydney.com.au
Monopole’s seasonal produce boxes are exactly what you'd imagine from a big-name chef behind four of Sydney’s finest restaurants. They’re stocked with fundamentals, such as sourdough bread baked at Yellow nearby, as well as favourites like eggplants and strawberries. You’ll also get a mix of delights that aren’t as easy to come by – think broad-bean shoots, star squash, cucamelons, smoked shallots and the like, with pickles, dukkah and some artisanal cheese. This is home to one of the best wine cellars in the country, so adding a bottle to your order is pretty much a given.

Eggs, produce, milk, rice and salt on a table at Sixpenny
Eggs, produce, milk, rice and salt on a table at Sixpenny
Photograph: Supplied

Sixpenny

Restaurants Modern Australian Stanmore

How much? $120
Pick-up or delivery? Pick up on Sat between 10am and 1pm
How to order? Click here
One of Sydney’s finest of fine-dining restaurants is stuffing hampers with what should be enough groceries for two people to last an entire week. Fundamentals like apples, pears, eggs and leafy greens are in there, but there are cheffy flourishes, too, like fresh pasta, farmhouse cheese and housemade granola. No great chef cooks without quality salt, so you’ll find some Murray River pink flakes included as well. They’re currently open as a general store on weekends, so grab a pastry or three when you pop in for pick-up.

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An unpacked box of produce and pantry staples
An unpacked box of produce and pantry staples
Photograph: Supplied

Nour

Restaurants Middle Eastern Surry Hills

How much? $79
Pick-up or delivery? Home delivery for $15 on Mon, free for orders over $100
How to order? Click here
You’ll find milk, sourdough bread, free-range eggs and basic fruits and vegetables in Nour’s Nourish Market Boxes, but the acclaimed modern Middle Eastern eatery in Surry Hills ups the ante with inspired additions like housemade hummus, Napoletana sauce and smoked labneh, as well as basmati rice, tins of tuna and even breakfast cereal. And yes, of course, there are two rolls of toilet paper included. While you’re on the website, you can also treat yourself to heat-at-home mains like mujaddara with lamb shoulder or spiced chicken with wild grains.

Someone holding a box unpacked box of produce and pantry staples
Someone holding a box unpacked box of produce and pantry staples
Photograph: Supplied

Three Blue Ducks

Restaurants Bronte

How much? $55
Pick-up or delivery? Both (delivery to nearby suburbs only), Tue, Fri and Sat
How to order? Click here
Fresh produce boxes seem like a no-brainer for these much-loved farm-to-fork pioneers. Theirs hold a rainbow of fresh fruits and vegetables, and you can top them up with organic farm eggs, sourdough from Iggy’s next door, pantry essentials or a bottle of wine from the natural-leaning Aussie-focused list. Co-owner Andy Allen also happens to be a judge on this season’s MasterChef, so he’ll be chucking in a mystery ingredient and challenging customers to upload their creations on Instagram to win a prize and share some inspo.

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An unpacked box of produce, beers and bottles of wine on a table at Fix
An unpacked box of produce, beers and bottles of wine on a table at Fix
Photograph: Supplied

Fix Wine Bar and Restaurant

Bars Wine bars Sydney

How much? $35, $40, $50 or $65
Pick-up or delivery? Both
How to order? Click here
Time Out’s 2020 Bar Awards Legend winner has four different options available. If you want to keep the fridge and pantry full, you can opt for a fruit and vegetable box ($50) with market-fresh seasonal picks and eggs or a $65 butcher pack with grass-fed sirloins, snags, pork mince and chicken breast. If you need something to go with the bottle of wine you’ll inevitably add to your cart, there are cured meat and gourmet cheese packs on offer so you can live the aperitivo-hour dream in full flight.

A box of raw meat and vegetables on a table at Nel
A box of raw meat and vegetables on a table at Nel
Photograph: Supplied/Cole Bennetts

Nel

Restaurants Sydney

How much? $45, $80, $130 or $185
Pick-up or delivery? Delivery, weekly on Tue and Thu to Sydney metro
How to order? Click here
Chef Nelly Robinson and his wife, Danielle, are continuing their commitment to spotlighting the best produce New South Wales has to offer with their range of Nel Boxes, all of which are sourced directly from the farmers and providers themselves. The $45 box scores you pantry essentials, while a box of fresh fruit and veg goes for $80 and you can add meat, seafood or a combination of both for more. All boxes come with recipes and serving suggestions by Robinson himself, and you can add a bottle of wine, too. 

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