Zachary Tan (ex-Bistro Guillaume) is Devon's executive chef. When the first Devon opened in 2013 on Devonshire Street in Surry Hills, it eschewed the standard breakfast model. Tan’s concept was simple: mix different cultures and cuisines to serve restaurant-quality food in a cafe setting. He then took that approach to Barangaroo.

Devon North Sydney (opened early 2018) doesn’t shake up Sydney’s cafe scene like its predecessors, but it’s still recognisably Devon-like. That means playful, approachable and punchy.

Instead of burgers with fried mozzarella patties, and stacked French toast, North Sydney has a rocket, quinoa and kale veggie bowl topped with a zucchini fritter and dotted with drops of corn puree. There’s also a chia pudding with almond milk, organic honey and tropical fruits.

This more traditional approach is echoed in the interiors, which are less Surry Hills hip and more relaxed all-day diner. Plants line the wall, and there’s simple, well-spaced timber furniture. At times during the day, a glass facade lets sun flood the space. It’s more family oriented, there’s even room for prams.

For those looking for a more typical Devon experience, ask for a guest-roast coffee, a custard-stuffed Luxe croissant; or a ragu alla sichuanese, which is coriander tagliolini slathered in a dandan-like sauce (a spicy Sichuan sauce) served with hunks of burrata. There’s also the omurice, a Japanese omelette which is unashamedly ugly, with gravy and a fluffy egg hiding a clump of garlicky tomato rice.

Alternatively, go for dinner and order DIY baos with crisp pork hock or a whole chicken roasted Malay-style.

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Updated: September 27th, 2022

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