Our culinary queen was in town this year, after travelling Down Under for An Evening With Nigella Lawson, a three-city run of conversations. While a Sydney stage didn’t cop a night with her, many a Sydney venue did. We rounded them up last month, midway through her dining expeditions – and now we have the final count.

As well as being excited for Sydney’s Lune to arrive, and hitting a Paddington textile shop for her “favourite fabric” (for an ottoman-shaped reminder of Oz) she hit a few more venues – then took to Instagram to tell us about them.

Here’s where she ate next, what she ordered – and what she thought.

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Ester, Chippendale

Mat Lindsay is a master of his craft, and Nigella knows it. “Ester is, for me, one of the Big Three (the other two being Lucky Kwong and Saint Peter where I can never get over the incredible, exquisite quality of the food or the loveliness of those whose work and truest selves create such enduring joy out of a restaurant visit,” she writes on Instagram. “The last time I posted about Ester, I wrote such a long caption, I had to split one post into three. Hard though it is to quell my exuberance when writing about @mrmatlindsay’s cooking, I’ll spare you that now!”

What did she feast on? The fermented potato bread with salmon roe and kefir cream that she “remember[ed] slaveringly” from her past visit; “transportingly good” oysters; a “sensational” kingfish ceviche with nori and mandarin; “a rhapsodic dish of silken baked egg with sweetcorn puree and caviar”; and more. She also had the crêpe brûlée, and it was “everything” she wanted it to be.

Small’s Deli, Potts Point

“I simply couldn’t come to Sydney without grabbing a sandwich at my favourite @smallsdeli,” she writes. “I branched out – for me – by going for the Marsa (tuna with preserved lemon aioli, capers, olives , parsley & hard-boiled egg) and I’m very happy about it!”

Palazzo Salato, CBD

It was her first time visiting the Ragazzi crew’s pasta palace, which is celebrating its first birthday. “Stracciatella di Bufala with anchovies and breadcrumbs – only they weren’t breadcrumbs so much as teeny-tiny croutons! This was a simple sensation I can’t tell you how often I’ve looked at this exquisite painting of a photo in the weeks since I ate this, and each time it reminds me of the utter joy it gave me.”

Her happy highlights? The silky serve of busiate with prawns and paprika, the “sensational” spanner crab mafaldine and the “deeply flavoured” flat iron steak with Salato butter. “The ‘Salato’ referring to the restaurant," she writes. "Slthough a good enough description anyway, since it is indeed a salty butter, made as it is with anchovies – so up my strada!”

Jane, Surry Hills

She made a quick dash to Jane, but likely missed the happy hour cos she didn’t mention a standout $12 Martini. She did have a glass of wine, and a serve of “squid ribbons (like tagliatelle cut from raw squid) with peas, lemon aspen, and horseradish”.

Cho Cho San, Potts Point

This is the joint that warranted a return dining trip. Last time, Lawson waltzed across the road to Cho Cho to eat “pretty much everything on the menu” after a visit to Potts Point Bookshop. Second time round, and she’s locked in her four-part “absolute must-order list”: the “Petuna Ocean Trout with Pepper and Wasabi; I am obsessed with this sauce, completely obsessed! Then, the Eggplant Miso Sticks, the aubergine cooked to silken softness, encased in a sesame crust with resounding crunch. The jubilant Temaki Rolls, and a trio of desserts: Green Tea Soft-Serve Ice Cream; Black Sesame Mochi; and, something of a surprise for me that I loved it so much, the Soy Milk Pudding with Hazelnuts, Cream and Caramel!”

Clam Bar, CBD

“I know that @clambarsydney is said to take inspiration from a New York steakhouse, but it has a much softer feel to it than that premise would suggest,” Lawson writes. “And the food most definitely tastes as if it comes out of an Australian rather than American kitchen – which, after all, it does!

“I went for lunch … and my feeling was that if you’re at a restaurant called Clam Bar and there’s Clam Frites on the menu, that’s what you choose. So I did! Think moules marinières only made with pipis, and it was 100% heavenly: the broth rich, rounded and exquisite, vivid with the most gorgeous, green chilli oil, that also seemed to convey the fragrant grassiness of parsley. Good chips, too. I failed to photograph … the dramatically presented, luxuriously bulging cheeseburger, and I didn’t have room for steak but, having ogled the rib-eye the next door table ordered, it’s only a matter of time!”

Cirrus, Barangaroo

She splurged at the Bentley Group’s luxe harbourside spot. There were scampi tacos topped with pickled green chillies, and (more) spanner crab, this time in a tomato broth with marigold oil. There was a striploin as main, with a serve of chicken-salt-doused chippies. “Such gorgeous people working there, too,” Lawson writes. “Talking of whom, special thanks to @mrdiddly.”

Lucky Kwong, South Eveleigh

While her visit to Lucky’s was in part one of our Nigella Watch, she took to Instagram to profess her love in response to the news of it closing soon. “It’s no secret that I revere @kylie_kwong and adore Lucky Kwong, and while I’m sad to go through photos of my most recent wonderful lunch there in the knowledge that it is, in fact, to be my last meal there ever, what makes Kylie Kylie is the fact that she listens to her heart, and acts on it. Have a much-deserved break, wonderful human, and I’m excited for the next chapter. May you continue to flourish and help others to flourish: it’s what you do!

Do read @kylie_kwong’s post about the decision to close LK over on her insta. And thank you, KK, for everything.”

@nigellalawson