A resurgent dining scene drawn from local produce coupled with a thriving arts culture is making Canberra an intriguing destination of late. We put together a guide to everything you should eat, drink and do during a whirlwind weekend away in the Australian capital.


Breakfast at Barrio Collective
Begin the day on a bright note at Barrio Collective, a friendly neighbourhood cafe in the vibrant suburb of Braddon in Canberra’s north. A minimalist space lined with benches, Barrio is known for the superb coffee roasted in its Fyshwick roastery and a menu all about simplicity. Depending on the time of year, you might come across a dish of heirloom tomatoes and Aleppo pepper on sourdough toast, or the seasonal veg plate featuring the latest harvest.

Bario Collective
59/30 Lonsdale Street, Braddon

Wind down in Adytum
A short jaunt down Lonsdale Street from Barrio is Adytum, a sanctuary housed in Braddon’s new Branx building. Launched in 2021 by local entrepreneur Renée Douros, Adytum is a tranquil space where wellness is the order of the day. Adytum’s day spa offers a range of restorative massages, body brushing and facials, which can be bundled into luxuriant spa “journeys” designed to foster harmony, vitality, and reconnection. A private bathhouse for two features a traditional hot rock sauna, a Japanese oak bath and a cold pail shower. Once pampered and restored, stop by the Elixir Bar, where you’ll find botanical tea, organic coffee, cold-pressed organic juices, and elixirs – cacao, matcha and chai.

101/16 Lonsdale Street, Braddon

Lunch at Miss Van's
Miss Van’s is the latest CBD venue from Andrew Duong, a local chef who has made his name running acclaimed local eateries including Baby Su and Lazy Su. At Miss Van’s, banh mi is on the menu – choose from lemongrass and garlic tofu or pork, with banana leaf-steamed mortadella, roast pork and chicken parfait – alongside a range of snacks, entrees and mains. The lunch set menu ($39pp) is a feast including two snacks, two mains and steamed jasmine rice. Think sashimi scallop and house-made Lao sausage to start, followed by umami butter egg noodles and gai yang grilled chicken. For dessert, try Miss Van’s house speciality: Vietnamese coffee and salted caramel ganache with condensed milk ice-cream, puffed wild rice and toasted rice powder.

Miss Van’s
Shop 4/113-119 Marcus Clarke Street, Canberra

Dinner at Aubergine
In 2008, Canberra-born chef Ben Willis returned home after a decade travelling and working around the world and, with his wife Andrea Collin, took over Aubergine. One of an unassuming string of shops in Griffith, Aubergine represents the pinnacle of Canberra’s resurgent paddock-to-plate movement. The award-winning fine diner showcases both Willis’s consummate skill in the kitchen and the region’s finest produce in a five-course menu. Depending on the timing of your visit, dishes might include beef rib eye with chestnut, smoked potato dumpling and truffle sauce or blue-eye trevalla with green goddess dressing, celery, apple and quinoa. The wine list is another drawcard, with an extensive range of international, Australian and local Canberra district wine on offer.

18 Barker Street, Griffith

Drink at Sideway
In the CBD’s Sydney Building resides Sideway, a late-night venue where you’ll find pizza, craft beer, wines by innovative producers and perennially interesting cocktails. Choices might include the yuzu and white chocolate Negroni, the Myrtle Sour (with pisco, cucumber and lemon myrtle) or the Puzo (with fig leaf whisky, peach leaf and toasted macadamias). Sideway is also the place to catch live music, anything from experimental electronica to acoustic sets.

Level 1/21 East Row, Canberra

Stay at Ovolo Nishi
A boutique hotel located in the in the CBD near Commonwealth Park, Ovolo Nishi is the swish base from which to explore central Canberra and its surrounding suburbs. Character-filled rooms feature restored vintage furniture and original artworks as well as all the high-tech mod-cons you need on a trip away. Other features include a 24-hour gym, a free loot bag and complimentary sundowner drinks at the end of each day.

Ovolo Nishi
New Acton Precinct, 25 Edinburgh Avenue, Canberra


Breakfast at Intra
In the morning, head west of the CBD to Campbell for a caffeine fix. Featuring a minimalist interior and floor-to-ceiling windows that gaze upon Hassett Park, Intra is one of the city’s most beloved coffee spots, serving a house blend from local roaster Barrio and single origins courtesy of Edition Coffee Roasters in Sydney. Breakfast jaffles come filled with kimchi, French onion gruyere or mapo tofu and Sichuan pork, or order the famed chashu bacon and egg roll before you spend another day exploring the capital.

30/12 Provan Street, Campbell

Lunch at Verity Lane Market
Another new venue to open recently in the Canberra CBD is Verity Lane Market, a food hall located in the Sydney Building. The vision of entrepreneur Phillip Keir, Verity Lane Market is named after Verity Hewitt, a bookseller whose eponymous store was a Canberra institution in the 1940s and ‘50s. Today, two vendors run kitchens in the space: boutique pizzeria Pizza Artigiana, and Ramen Daddy, a popular pop-up that found a permanent home at Verity Lane.

Verity Lane Market
Sydney Building, 50 Northbourne Avenue, Canberra

Browse Tributary Projects
An artist-run gallery located in Gorman Arts Centre on Ngunnawal land in Braddon, Tributary Projects serves as an incubator for early-career artists in Canberra. Since 2017, Tributary has operated as a collective and a community hub for the local arts scene. Nestings, a recent exhibition, explored the universal human desire for comfort – with the pandemic as a backdrop – and showcased the work of Alexander Sarsfield, Megan Kamei, Jessica Tanto and Ashley Lavoynne.

Tributary Projects
Block B Gallery, Gorman Arts Centre, 55 Ainslie Avenue, Braddon

Dinner at Raku
Raku serves up the finest Japanese cuisine in town. Named after a type of handmade ceramic art revered in Japan for the artistry required to produce it, Raku offers a dining experience where every detail is considered. Two tasting menu options highlight chef Hao San’s menu, including high-grade sashimi, Wagyu striploin and Taiwanese eel. A spot at the counter provides an unbeatable view of the chefs’ mastery, or retreat to one of Raku’s screened booths for a more intimate meal.

148 Bunda Street, Civic

This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with Visit Canberra.