On the cafe strip at Bronte Beach, Swell Restaurant has ridden the crest of the wave for years. Dishing out seafood and sushi plates, it's a beacon for those wanting a view of the surf and a meal to boot. Once it stretched over two premises, but now the neighbouring room has become Bronte Cucina, an Italian diner from the same owners, open for lunch and dinner.
During the summer, Bronte Beach eateries are packed, but at night they tend to be a favourite for locals. Bronte Cucina is pretty intimate, with a mural of old-world Italian food and wine on one wall and a simple, clean set-up. The menu, chalked out overhead, welcomes a mix of modern Australian and similarly clean Mediterranean cuisine.
With an emphasis on organic and gluten-free, Bronte Cucina also promotes a healthy palate. Entrees range from kingfish carpaccio with capers, olive tapenade and raspberry vinegar, to fresh figs wrapped in prosciutto and stuffed with gorgonzola.
Mains are split between pastas – the best of which is a wonderful thyme pappardelle with duck ragout (slow cooked for eight hours) and porcini mushrooms – two seafood dishes (crisp ocean trout or swordfish) and a tender eye fillet or pork fillet saltimbocca.
If that’s too much, there’s always the nearby Bronte to Bondi walk to burn off any excess calories.
465 Bronte Road, Bronte Beach
(02) 9386 5666
Lunch, Fri to Sun noon–2.30pm
Dinner, Wed to Sat 5pm–10.30pm