And just like that, winter’s here. But this month we’re warming up with pizza by the slice at stellar new pizzerias (including one that sells them by weight, Roman-style), dining at three of the biggest openings of the year so far and hopping between cinemas to catch new flicks at Sydney Film Festival. Here’s where you’ll find Broadsheet editors this month.
Three more big openings from our fave operators
Seasoned hospitality operators and groups have been unveiling new additions to their stables left and right – last month we told you we’d already checked out Palazzo Salato and were heading to Armorica and Brasserie 1930 in May. And in June, we’ve got a new hit list to tick off.
Starting with Le Foote, an audacious and alluring new wine bar by Swillhouse, the team behind Restaurant Hubert, Alberto’s Lounge, Shady Pines and more. Order small plates like scallop carpaccio and Cantabrian white anchovies, or go bigger with the barramundi with burnt butter and Rangers Valley bavette while sipping from a cracking, 300-strong wine list and watching the world go by through the window, which has views of the Harbour Bridge and MCA (it’s got a good vantage point for Vivid, too).
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There’s also Clam Bar, the New York-inspired steakhouse from the teams behind the Italian-accented Pellegrino 2000 and neo-French diner Bistrot 916. “New York classics meet the daggy drinks of the ’80s” is how co-owner Andy Tyson describes his drinks list, featuring Martinis in tall glasses and Blue Daiquiri that swaps food colouring for natural blue spirulina. Head chef Sam Galloway’s menu starts with a full raw seafood bar (including caviar and oysters three ways) before classic appetisers like scallops casino, rump camp steak tartare and the unmistakable beef-fat potatoes from Bistrot 916, care of chef-owner Dan Pepperell.
And some of the best in the biz when it comes to grand new venues, the Speakeasy Group has opened The Sanderson inside a heritage-listed former department store. With the reputation the team’s built from Nick & Nora’s, Mjolner and the recently reopened Eau de Vie, you can expect attention to detail, a memorable experience and a team that pulls out all the stops. There are complimentary cocktail shots, Cape Grim beef tartare prepared tableside, theatrical cocktails set ablaze and a menu that includes lobster pasta, abalone mushroom with butternut pumpkin, smoked Wollemi duck and bombe alaska. Phew.
Santo Palato comes to Sydney
Giorgio De Maria is on a roll. After bringing chefs and winemakers from the Italian region of Irpinia on a whirlwind tour of Australia in April and May, he’s now doing the same with Abruzzo-born chef Sarah Cicolini, one of the most exciting young chefs in Rome today. And we’re surprised tickets are still available, but we’ll be tucking into a long lunch with her trattoria-style dishes (including Roman tripe, tagliatelle with white ragu and the arancini-like supli al telefono) and wines curated by De Maria (of course) – at Paski Vineria Popolare on June 4. Saluti.
At the movies
We’re crunching the numbers for this year’s Sydney Film Festival: 70th anniversary, 239 films, 67 countries, 37 world premieres, 90 narratives, 54 docos. Maths is not our strong suit, but it seems like the sum is one massive program worth checking out. The New Boy, starring Cate Blanchett, Deborah Mailman and 11-year-old newcomer Aswan Reid, has been making waves at Cannes Film Festival and will have its Australian premiere here. There’s also Wes Anderson’s star-studded Asteroid City, intense drama Monster by director Kore-eda Hirokazu (Shoplifters and Broker), Kiwi comedy Red, White & Brass executive produced by Taika Waititi, Penelope Cruz-starrer L’immensita and plenty more.
The Hub also returns to Sydney Town Hall as the heart of the festival – get a casual drink at the bar between films, attend a ’60s-themed party dedicated to Hairspray, hear from author Bruce Pascoe after a screening of The Dark Emu Story, check out an exhibition documenting the festival’s 70 years and rally your mates for the prize-packed SFF Film Trivia Night. Remember – the answer is “Rosebud”.
Any way you slice it
Sydney isn’t lacking in great pizza places, but three new pizzerias have got us excited about bread, crust, sauce and toppings all over again. Especially since they all serve by the slice.
There’s Oti, the new takeaway joint by Merivale that’s brought Roman-style pizza, show-stopping focaccia-like slices, sandwiches made with hand-stretched schiacciata (focaccia’s thin and crispy cousin) and lines out the door to the CBD. We’ll be rocking up early so as not to risk getting there when everything’s sold out.
Broadsheet directory editor Dan Cunningham’s new favourite spot is City Oltra, where you can get classic round pizzas that are more American than Italian, but not quite New York-style either. The bestseller is Rancho Relaxo, which is “a bit naughtier” than your average pepperoni thanks to the addition of cool ranch. And inspired by the pizzerias of Rome, Ta Ta Ta in Bondi Junction serves rectangular slices that are sold by weight. There are 12 to 14 different toppings on display on any given day, but the menu changes almost daily – previous hits have included three types of mushrooms on a parmesan-cream base, silverbeet with confit tomatoes and feta, and salami with fior di latte, mozzarella and rocket on tomato sauce.
No rest for the Vivid
We’ve already been to see the lights at Vivid, but as the festival has consistently proven over the last few years, there’s more to see and do than just the lights. In fact, this month we’re more excited about the music and food.
There’s a moving tribute to the incomparable Archie Roach (featuring Paul Kelly, Emma Donovan, Dan Sultan and more); a series of free concerts ranging from electronic, shoegaze and soul to hip-hop, psychedelic and Afrobeat; a multi-sensory festival that’s taking over Carriageworks for 10 hours of partying; and a last-minute line-up change that’ll see legendary producer, DJ and rapper Madlib headlining a massive party.
Vivid’s also pulling out all the stops for its inaugural Food pillar – we’re stopping by a new food, wine, art and music festival-within-the-festival curated by Palisa Anderson (Chat Thai and Boon Luck Farm) and P&V’s Mike Bennie, then
sitting down for a First Nations dining experience by the founder of native food business Indigiearth and heading to a popular night market, this time with stalls curated by leading chef Matt Stone.
We’ve also rounded up the best places to eat and drink outside the official Vivid Food program, including a rooftop bar where drinks won’t cost a pretty penny and an underground venue with a late-night cabaret club. See you there.
For more restaurants, exhibitions, activities and pop-ups, check out our regularly updated guide of Things To Do in Sydney.