I love Since I Left You. Awesome little back alley Brooklyn-style cafe/restaurant/bar in the middle of the city dishing up super tasty nibble plates (with honeycomb!) and sensational cocktails. Brick walls and fire escapes surround you in a theatre set like courtyard. The name? The three lads behind it thought they'd show their exes what they could do on their own... www.sinceileftyou.com.au
Yok Thai Tapas and Wine in Rangers Road in Neutral Bay is so much more than what you expect after visiting many a Thai restaurant. This one is tapas for starters. Fantastic Thai food, but with the atmosphere of a curio shop thrown in. Gorgeous, friendly staff.
The Bridge Room is housed in a stunning 1930s building a short skip and a jump from Circular Quay. This Robata grilled duck breast with blueberries and compressed fig is an example of their delicious, classy food. It's such a sophisticated, light-filled restaurant with beautiful service - where business seamlessly meets pleasure www.thebridgeroom.com.au
Gastro Park is, as it sounds, a playground of gastronomy, without the pretences. It's food is all about beautiful, balanced combinations of wonderful ingredients. Grant King is a mad scientist with an absolute passion for superb food. This is the swordfish belly with wasabi pea crust. A big favourite of mine. www.gastropark.com.au
What a fun find. Hidden at the back Neutral Bay's Big Bear Shopping Centre is Garlic Teppanyaki House. The family who run it spend most of their lives here, dishing up food, watching TV and chatting to their customers. They spend a lot of time in laughter as well, throwing as much food as possible at the kids or anyone up for it. You can order anything on your pancake dessert, as they just duck into Coles to buy it for you! BYO. It'll put a smile on your dial. http://www.garlicteppanyaki.com
Cafe art by the famous barista - Chai (thats his name) at Uliveto Cafe. This place is an institution, always packed with creative and eccentric locals. Beautiful atmosphere - classical music playing in a courtyard brimming with big palms in worn Spanish-style pots. You could be forgiven for thinking you're on the Mediterranean coast rather than in the middle of Kings Cross! www.ulivetocafe.com.au