What makes a great restaurant? At Broadsheet, we’re interested in how well a place lives up to its own ambitions, regardless of its age, price point or cuisine.

Maybe it’s good value for money and a reliable source of fun. Maybe it pioneered a trend, and remains the most vital example of it. Or maybe, after several decades in operation, it still feels as fresh and relevant as ever.

All are equally valid answers when it comes to determining the best restaurants in Canberra. That’s why our list includes lively wine bars and other dressed-down eateries alongside the usual fine diners. The remit may be wide, but if you’re looking for restaurants that both define and capture the city’s culinary spirit, stop right here. These are Canberra’s absolute best.

Related Pages
Best Bars in Canberra
Best Cafes in Canberra



Though relatively young, Pilot is widely regarded as one of Australia’s finest restaurants. Its deceptively simple dishes evidence a fierce commitment to locality and seasonality, while the drinks list celebrates the country’s most exciting new winemakers and distilleries.

Shop 1 Wakefield Gardens, Ainslie

Bar Rochford


Natural wines, great food and a tasteful soundtrack – it's no wonder this is Canberra’s most acclaimed bar. Set within an 1920s heritage building with a window overlooking London Circuit, it also happens to be one of the capital’s best-looking venues.

65 London Circuit, Canberra



At this no-rules bistro, a woodfired oven powers the daily menu of seasonal dishes. Expect influences from France, Japan and everywhere in between, alongside a fun list of lo-fi wines. And in the former bank vault downstairs, a cosy little bar for more wine, snacks and killer tunes.

35 Kennedy Street, Kingston



The pace of modern Australian dining and the precision of Japanese cuisine come together on a seafood-heavy menu that goes all-in on premium produce. To drink, it’s sake, Japanese-influenced cocktails and a dizzying list of European and Australian wines.

148 Bunda Street, Canberra

Rebel Rebel


Just like David Bowie, the inimitable cool of Sean McConnell’s restaurant will draw you in – and then keep you there with raw talent. Expect elegant European-leaning dishes, a Canberra-heavy wine list, and a takeaway bottle shop on-site for when you do (eventually) have to leave.

23 Marcus Clarke Street, Acton

Mu Omakase


A refined, counter-style experience that’ll transport you to the omakase bars of Japan. Each of the 12 seats puts you up-close and personal with the chefs as they transform seasonal ingredients into contemporary Japanese dishes. Expect knife skills, seafood and plenty of sake.

1 Constitution Avenue, Canberra



Produce-driven, refined and seasonal; Aubergine is a staple of Canberra’s fine dining scene. And it continues to go from strength to strength. Visit for a set menu that changes almost daily, backed up by one of the largest wine lists in the ACT.

18 Barker Street, Griffith
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A team of chefs harness fire and smoke to bring Wilma’s progressive pan-Asian dishes to life. Native Australian ingredients figure heavily, and are executed thoughtfully across a menu of raw, wok-fried and barbequed hits inspired by Southeast Asia and coastal China.

1 Genge Street, Canberra

Monster Kitchen & Bar


The Ovolo Nishi Hotel’s sleek bar and kitchen is a destination all its own. A boundary-pushing, all-veg menu is primed for casual snacks or a formal dining experience, in a contemporary space punctuated by eclectic lounges, roaring fireplaces and lakeside vistas.

Bar 25 Edinburgh Avenue, Canberra

Les Bistronomes


A Gordon Ramsay alumnus is behind this modern French bistro, where seasonal ingredients and classic techniques collide on the must-order degustation. Gallic standards such as escargots and duck a l’orange are also on show, alongside a gamut of French wine and fun cocktails.

18 Blamey Place, Campbell



A classic Italian trattoria in the heart of Civic. Come for traditional hand-cut pastas, rustic secondi and wines sourced from small Italian producers. Mezzalira also has an alfresco offshoot called Da Rosario that’s primed for a street-side espresso.

55 London Circuit, Canberra

Italian & Sons


A relaxed, no-tablecloths trattoria serving house-cut pasta, woodfired focaccia and antipasti from the family behind Canberra favourite Mezzalira.

7 Lonsdale Street, Braddon



Named after the Spanish word for season, this moody inner-city bar is defined as much by its charcoal grill as its innovative cocktails. And while the menu isn’t strictly Spanish, dishes are reliably polished, approachable and driven by the day’s best produce.

15 Moore Street, Canberra



This Nikkei-stye restaurant brings together the flavours of Japan and Peru. It's in a moody, dramatically-lit space filled with statues and hangings from Peru. Expect Peruvian anticuchos alongside nigiri and sashimi with South American tweaks.

Shop B11A, 148 Bunda St, Canberra



Canberra has no shortage of great Southeast food. But XO ranks among the city’s most innovative purveyors, with a set-menu that doesn’t shy away from pushing culinary boundaries. And even though it’s a degustation-only affair, the atmosphere is laid-back and friendly here.

16 Iluka Street, Narrabundah
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A contemporary Thai diner serving sizzling claypot prawns and fried ice cream, and run by two brothers who grew up in their parents’ restaurant.

18/19 Eastlake Parade, Kingston



Set plum in the city centre, it’s no surprise this lively spot packs out nearly every night of the week. Despite this, it somehow manages to still feel like a relaxed neighbourhood bistro, with an energetic soundtrack and quality food to match.

Lonsdale Street & Eloura Street, Braddon

Chairman & Yip


A true Canberra dining institution. The decor recalls old Shanghai glamour, but the set menu deals in Cantonese, Sichuan and Yunnan flavours, complemented by a lengthy wine list and Asian-inflected cocktails.

1 Bunbury Close, Barton



This energetic, late-night East Asian diner is filled with neon lights and has one of the largest sake lists in Australia.

40 Bunda Street, Canberra