There are many things that make Adelaide great: the wine, the Hills, smiley fritz, Lucia’s number one sandwich. And at this time of year, with the buzz of the Fringe and the heat beckoning us all towards the beach, there’s no denying the city’s sparkle.

But what about the spots that hover a bit more under the radar, that you have to go out of your way to find? We asked nine chefs and creatives about their favourite underrated spot in Adelaide.

“I will always love The Grace Emily and The Wheatsheaf. Also, the various Italian social clubs around Adelaide are an awesome place for cheap and delicious grub. They are still a place of refuge for the older Italian community and are an untapped source of nostalgia and kitsch for those who want something different. I grew up going to the Abruzzo Club on Churchill Road – they have an excellent weekly Friday night pizza and pasta offering I highly recommend.”
Carla Lippis, composer and singer

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Angler in Stirling. Dry-aged seafood, the best fish’n’chips – if it’s sustainably sourced and from the water you’ll find it at this place. Move over Josh Niland, we’ve got our own seafood expert right here in South Australia in the form of chef Sam Prance-Smith! He’s just opened a place in the Central Market too – it’s called Fair Seafood – if the city is more your vibe.”
Callum Hann, chef, Olive

Mandoo, the best tiny hole-in-the-wall Korean spot. Always incredible.”
Billie Justice Thomson, artist

“I still haven’t been!” “Is that the one out north?” “Never heard of it.” They’re all responses I’ve got when raving about Topiary, an (almost) out-of-town diner that flies far further under the radar than it should. It occupies a 140-year-old cottage and its sandstone courtyard, where you feel a world away sitting beneath the wisteria-wrapped arbour. The reasonably priced à la carte lunch menu balances fine-dining flourishes with a new crowd-pleaser: pizzas made with a sourdough starter that’s as old as the Pollards’ tenure at the venue. The bases are crispy, the crusts are beautifully blistered, and toppings might include brassicas, wild-herb pesto and whipped feta; sopressa salami, capsicum and garlic-spiked honey; or oyster mushroom, fior di latte and thyme."
Tomas Telegramma, food, drinks and culture writer

La Popular Taqueria in Port Adelaide. They run two-for-one Margs, and the food is delicious. Not sure if it’s underrated but it’s absolutely a hidden gem.”
Jake Kellie, chef, Arkhe

“Port Adelaide is very underrated. For starters it has such a rich street art scene, largely due to Wonderwalls Festival, showcasing large works by both local and international artists. Couple this with its heritage architecture and cobbled laneways, and you have this charming historic town where the old meets the new.”
Alex Bellas, artist and muralist

“Visiting the Egypt Room at the South Australian Museum is a peacefully seance-like experience. The wall murals haven’t changed since the 1940s and the collection of Egyptian mummies, sarcophagi and objects is reliably mind-blowing, no matter how many times you’ve been there before.”
– Stavroula Adameitis (aka Frida Las Vegas), fashion designer and creative

“I don’t even know if I’d call it underrated, but the Adelaide Botanic Gardens on North Terrace is a family favourite. It’s beautifully designed, and I love that you can slip out of the city into a place of calm tranquillity. I used to go there to read, and now we go to let the kids roam and explore and watch the ducklings and turtles.”
Hannah Kent, novelist

"Hometown Flavour, a small Chinese restaurant tucked away in the corner of the Adelaide Central Market, which has a special rice-noodle soup. The highlight of the soup is the fermented bamboo shoot, which is very stinky but delicious – you will either love it or hate it!"
Simon Ming, chef, Odé