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LuMi Bar & Dining | Pyrmont, Sydney

When one is on the everlasting quest for great food, one goes to great lengths to consummate the experience that bestows on us food euphoria on a higher plane. But in doing so, one may sometimes forget that there is excellence everywhere around us. LuMi Bar & Dining is, quite simply, one of the worst-kept secrets in Sydney. In the two years since it opened this Japanese-Italian lightbox, perched at the tip of Pyrmont harbour, raked in awards so fast the yachts & speedboats in the habour seemed positively slothful.

You don’t even have to click into this post to infer that I’m going to wax lyrical about the place – if it’s between reading this piece and making a booking right now, I think you know where my recommendation lies. But for those with a bit more curious? Read on to find out why I think this may just be one of my favourite Sydney restaurants in 2016.

Date Last Visited: 17/09/2016  22/03/15
Address: Wharf 10, 56 Pirrama Rd Pyrmont, NSW 2009
Go-to dish: parmesan chawanmushi
Price Guide (approx): $115 for 8-courses

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Menulog Turns 10 (and $10 off your next order!)

When I turned ten years old, in China, I got a red pocket to celebrate my first double-digit age milestone without too many broken bones. There wasn’t much in there, but it allowed me to go full glutton over my favourite street eats. Such opportunities were considered a luxury back then – that red pocket made my week.

Now, food delivery service Menulog has also hit the gong on this momentous occasion: the oldest and largest food ordering system in Australia has just turned ten, but instead of spending lavishly on itself, they’ve decided to spread the love to us all – read on to find out more!

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Hills Bros | Martin Place, Sydney CBD

When it comes to naming exceptional cafes in Sydney’s CBD, it would be a struggle for me to even name five venues, let alone a top five. Don’t get me wrong – excellent coffee talent is plentiful, but cafes that serve great food as well? A demand where supply is dearly lacking. Are us suits really so busy that we can’t sit down and have some properly delicious food while on lunch break?

I sure hope not, because the folks from Paramount Coffee Project and Reuben Hills finally bring us the gift of Hills Bros – a cafe in the heart of Martin Place that does as much justice to food as it does to the coffee bean.

Date Last Visited: 6/09/2016
Address: 5 Martin Place, CBD, Sydney, NSW
Go-to Dish: brown rice congee

Price Guide (approx): $10-20

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Neil Perry’s Eleven Bridge | Sydney CBD

Stalwart (n) – a loyal, reliable, and hard-working supporter/participant in an organization or team. If there was ever a shoehorn restaurant fitting this definition in Sydney’s dynamic fine dining landscape, it would absolutely, unequivocally, be Neil Perry’s Rockpool. Established in 1989, it has the incredible honour of being the longest-running fine dining restaurant in Sydney. As far as the high-end goes, Rockpool is immutable.

But now, times are a changing – Rockpool closes its figurative doors, re-opening under its new mantle Eleven Bridge. The biggest question then – same same, or different?

Date Last Visited: 26/08/2016
Address: 11 Bridge Street, Sydney NSW 2000
Go-to Dish: Whole partridge steamed in bread w/glazed turnip
Price Guide (approx): $40 entrees, $50-$70 mains, $25 dessert

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Guillaume | Paddington

Guillaume Brahimi is a French giant in Sydney – both in real life, and in his eponymous restaurant which, for many years, has been a French institution at the Sydney Opera House. They say that you can’t miss what you’ve never had – I beg to differ.

See, I never got the chance to visit “Sydney’s best French restaurant” during its stint at our most famous landmark. The chance escaped me – Guillaume at the Opera House closed its doors in 2013. I missed out on what surely must have been wonderful food, set in an iconic location and complemented by world-class service. I missed what I never had – until now.

Date Last Visited: 30/07/2016
Address: 92 Hargrave Street, Paddington, Sydney, NSW

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Ninou Patisserie & Boulangerie | Rosebery

Long-time readers of the blawg know that I seldom review patisseries, bakeries, and the like. Not because I eschew visiting them, but rather because it is rare that I get enough “material” to coalesce into a blog post. I’m Still Hungry is, after all, a slow reads blog – it’s rare that I eat a significant percentage of my body weight in sugar in order to obtain enough content for a post.

Thus, you know a patisserie is something special if I’m putting out a post. Say hello to Ninou Patisserie & Boulangerie – my current favourite patisserie/cake shop in Sydney!

Date Last Visited: 14/08/2016
Address: 1-3 Dunning Avenue, Rosebery, Sydney

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Sushi Omakase at Hana Ju-Rin | Crows Nest

You could say that Michael Phelps has won a “decent amount” of gold medals in his Olympic career. You could say I’ve eaten a decent amount of sushi in my lifetime. Guess which of the aforementioned two sentences is the bigger understatement? It’s safe to say that if the consumption of sushi was banned in Sydney, I would be packing my bags tomorrow.

Fortunately, Sydney’s Japanese scene is once again bolstered by a hidden gem of a Japanese restaurant in the Lower North Shore that has – despite all odds – escaped my radar. Say hello to Crows Nest’s Hana Ju-Rin!

Date Last Visited: 5/8/2016
Address: 300 Pacific Highway,Crows Nest, Sydney, NSW

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The Best Burgers in Sydney

Hi! You may know me as the guy who brought you the series on the best ramen in Sydney. Why, welcome back dear reader! Looks like you and I share quite the discerning palate of carbs and fat, the source of any balanced diet.

Here’s the deal folks. For the ramen post, I covered seventeen ramen joints. That’s not exhaustive, but it was a start. I’ve upped the ante this time round, because I’m both an overachiever and a masochist, with arteries that somehow manage to remain relatively lipid-free. This time, I’m going to cover thirty burger restaurants.

Did I stutter, or are you going to wipe the stunned look off your face and click through?

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Attica | Ripponlea, Melbourne

In 2013, I visited Attica, then the #21 best restaurant in the world on the San Pellegrino World’s 50 Best List. And  I was not impressed – Ben Shewry’s food wasn’t my idea of world-class. Certainly – the polished service, the attention to detail and the use of native Australian flora and fauna were all most exemplary and worthy of recognition. However, the food just wasn’t all that…tasty. My palate is my palate, after all – as such, while I appreciated it, I didn’t like it anywhere near what I thought I would.

But short of a disaster, I’m all about second chances – there’s no way true restaurant reviewers would score a venue based off just one visit, and if I’m going to make a judgement call on Attica, I ought to take a page out of their books. A second visit, three years later, was in – colour me seriously impressed.

Date Last Visited: 07/07/2016 27/11/13
Address: 74 Glen Eira Rd Ripponlea, VIC 3185

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Mercado

Mercado European | Sydney CBD

You know I have to say, I love my job. Not only is my office situated right above the train station at which I get off, but I’ve got decent hours, and most importantly – the people I work with are nothing short of fantastic.

But you know what? Food’s always been a bit of an issue. Sure, you do have the recently revamped MLC which is probably the classiest food court around, and a smattering of mainly Italian-based joints dotting the place, but no restaurant in particular I would write home about or – as it turns out – on which I’d write a blog post. Enter Mercado, the next “big thing” in Martin Place.

Date Last Visited: 13/5/2016
Address: 4 Ash St, Sydney 2000
Recommended Dish(es): truffle mortadella, wagyu tongue brioche, roasted octopus

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