While the f-word (fusion) is not new to Sydney, we’ve definitely seen an influx of openings where the rulebook is tossed to the wind. We’re calling it genre-less eating, and often it’s a marriage of the US and Asia. From a New York-and-Japanese-style grill to American-Korean fried chicken, here are the latest openings breaking boundaries.
Best for: homemade pasta and natural wines in Alexandria.
Rather than the usual rockmelon accompaniment, buffalo mozzarella and prosciutto are paired with grilled peaches. Homemade spaghetti is stacked with saucy mussels, and tortelloni is stuffed with mushrooms and topped with Genovese walnut pesto.
There are local and Italian wines alongside white Sangria and Reverse Sake, an iced drink similar to granita.
Best for: crispy Korean fried chicken in Enmore.
Enmore’s newest Korean fried-chicken restaurant does just what it says on the tin. No-frills, American-style fried chicken with Korean chilli, soy and garlic toppings. Brother-and-sister duo Julie and Jeff Oh have curated a menu inspired by family recipes. Try the barbeque pork belly with kimchi with sriracha-topped fries. When their license arrives, Flying Tong will operate like a chicken-and-beer bar, something that has become a fad in Korea.
Best for: pasta and Negronis.
Founder of Fratelli Fresh, Nina Gravelis, has taken over the Missy French site in Potts Point. With former Fratelli Fresh head chef Sean Corkery in the kitchen, the food is comforting with an elegant touch. The crab spaghetti with chilli and cherry tomatoes reminds us of the good old days.
Best for: steak with all-American sides.
A New York-style Japanese grill has landed in Chippendale from Stanley Wong (Spice Market, Mandarin Oriental Hotel). There are four cuts of meat on offer, from Scotch steaks to tenderloins and pork chops, grilled over binchōtan charcoals. But wait until you see the all-American sides such as truffled mac’n’cheese and New York cheesecake.
Best for: fine dining in Bondi.
Dinner by Heston Blumenthal chef Samuel Cole and Finnish hospitality hero Tomi Björk have joined forces in Bondi. A dish that sums up Blanca Bar & Dining is the pastrami bonito. It’s soft from being cured overnight with yuzi, soy and brown-butter dressing, kombu pickles, and flakes of candied kombu.
Best for: one of the only Sydney restaurants serving salt-baked fish.
Singapore’s best Italian chef Lino Sauro (Gattopardo, Garibaldi) has arrived in Australia to open Olio in Kensington Street’s Old Rum Store. His focus is on seafood dishes that reflect his own experiences in Sicily and Singapore. Highlights include the ravioli with buratta and truffle sauce, as well as the salt-baked wild snapper with potatoes, broken open at your table.
The wine list represents Italy well, alongside some new local Australian producers, all with a focus on organic and biodynamic production. The adjoining 40-seater rooftop is surrounded by olive trees.