No one sits on the fence when it comes to oysters: either you can’t get enough of them or you wouldn’t eat them if you were stranded on an island with nothing else to eat.

Broadsheet is on team can’t-get-enough. If you are too, this is the right guide for you. Some of these restaurants have views of the ocean that you can enjoy as you slurp down oysters by the half-dozen or more (just don’t forget to chew – it’s a myth that you should swallow them whole). Other places serve them up with garnishes designed to be paired with wine. A lot of these restaurants are budget-friendly, serving great oysters for $1 or $2 a pop. That’s helping to dispel the idea that oysters are a special-occasion-only food that must be consumed with lots of champagne.

Sydney is one of the best places in the world to eat oysters. Few cities have oysters named after them, and fewer still have a variety that tastes as good as the Sydney rock oyster. It's an enormous smack of flavour concentrated across a smaller surface compared with other types, such as the Pacific oyster. Sydney rock oysters are featured accordingly on the menus of these places. Some renditions are familiar, and others get more experimental.

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The Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay

This seafood-focused fine diner has been setting the standard for oysters in Sydney for more than two decades. Look out over the water and choose from the 12-strong oyster list.

123 Ferry Rd, Glebe

Saint Peter

Saint Peter's is one of Sydney's best seafood restaurants, and is renowned for serving it in unexpected ways (such as the snapper sausage served on an English muffin). The oyster selection takes a different tack. There's a confident mix of seven oysters, each with a different provenance and taste profile.

362 Oxford Street, Paddington

Cirrus

Cirrus is a seafood-focused restaurant inside a bright, sun-lit bistro space in Barangaroo. There are three oysters to choose from as starters, and they also feature later on in the seafood platter, served with mignonette sauce.

10/23 Barangaroo Avenue, Sydney

Fred's

Fred's serves Claire de Lune oysters from renowned oyster farm Moonlight Flat. They come served with a coriander and white-pepper mignonette.

380 Oxford Street, Paddington

Sydney Fish Markets

Sydney's home of seafood can't be beaten on freshness. Although Doyle's steals most of the headlines (and is one of the few places where you can still get your oysters served kilpatrick), trusty providers like Peter's and Christie's serve oysters that are just as good. It's worth visiting for the theatre of seeing one of the masters shuck your oyster in a split second.

Bank Street & Pyrmont Bridge Road, Pyrmont

Icebergs Dining Room and Bar

The oyster here is served with cold-pressed lemon dressing, but it's the world-famous view out over the beach that truly elevates the taste.

Restaurant 1 Notts Ave, Bondi

Rockpool Bar & Grill

With all the steak on the menu, it's easy to forget that Rockpool is just as much a seafood restaurant as it is a steakhouse.

66 Hunter Street, Sydney

Otto Ristorante

You may balk at the concept of an $8 oyster, but it's worth trying the Tathra oyster here before passing judgement. These oysters are prized for their rarity, due to their limited geographic range and short season.

Area 8 6 Cowper Wharf Road, Woolloomooloo

Bennelong

Oysters here are served at the Bennelong bar. They're dressed with a lemon and pepper granita.

Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point

The Morrison Bar and Oyster Room

On Wednesday from 6-7pm, oysters are $1.50 each.

225 George Street, Sydney

Catalina

The Sydney rock oysters here come with two choices of garnish: eschalot and red wine vinegar, or lime, chilli and tobiko.

Lyne Park, Rose Bay

Poly

This Surry Hills wine bar serves up oysters by the half dozen, served with late harvest grape vinegar.

74-76 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills

Reign

It wouldn't be a champagne bar without oysters.

Level 1, Queen Victoria Building 455 George Street, Sydney

Golden Century

This icon may be better known for its abalone-based dishes, but the oysters here are just as worthy a starter.

393-399 Sussex Street, Sydney

Moxhe

Although Belgian food is better known for its focus on mussels, Moxhe's oyster offering is impressive. It uses the same provider as Saint Peter and the Boathouse on Blackwattle Bay.

65b Macpherson Street, Bronte

Public Dining Room

This Balmoral favourite also sources its oysters from the renowned Moonlight Flat farm.

2A The Esplanade, Balmoral

The Butler

Rock oysters at The Butler come garnished with chilli oil and a "maggi michelada".

123 Victoria Street, Potts Point

The Gantry

Enjoy your oyster with a stunning view of the Sydney Harbour.

11 Hickson Road, Sydney

Altum

Another rival for best harbour view – this time from the Luna Park side of the harbour.

1 Olympic Drive, Milsons Point

Queen Chow Manly Wharf

This Cantonese restaurant on Manly Wharf has its own dedicated oyster bar.

22-23 Manly Wharf East Esplanade, Manly

Mosman Rowers

This relaxed bar and restaurant is right on the water, making it a perfect spot for a glass of wine and an oyster or 12.

3 Centenary Drive, Mosman
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