In addition to the fashion and shopping, deluxe restaurant dining is another of Paddington’s major drawcards. Fred’s (380 Oxford St) is an inclusive fine diner with a rustic heart that has taken the open kitchen concept to its apex, removing the walls entirely so that the dining room and kitchen are one and the same.
Saint Peter (362 Oxford St) is devoted wholly and exclusively to the fruits of the sea. Under the direction of chef Josh Niland, who has committed his career to seafood, brunch becomes a pescatarian dream with smoked eel served on pikelets and uni on crumpets, and at dinner time, a tangle of octopus legs are punked up with a feisty XO and silky squid ink. A couple of doors up, Fish Butchery (388 Oxford St) is the expansion of Niland’s empire, serving sustainable prime cuts from the ocean and the best takeaway fish and chips in town.
The Cipri family also has you taken care of for soul-warming Italian food. Of an evening, Cipri is a welcoming place to sit down to a plate housemade pasta, Rose and Joe’s top pick is the ‘Pappardelle con ragu d’anatra e funghi’ with thyme pappardelle, slow braised duck, and swiss brown mushroom ragu. At Barbetta, they say you can’t go past the ‘Best ever lasagne’ for lunch. For fresh South East Asian food, Joe and Rose also love to get down to Chubby Cheeks (437 Oxford Street) for modern Thai dishes designed to share.
Across the road from the UNSW Art & Design campus, Indian Home Diner (86 Oxford St) is a popular port of call for those on a student budget to pick up a late-night Indian kebab.