5 Swanky Restaurants In Sydney Worth The Splurge

Sydney’s most sumptuous and trendy hotspots!

Sydney is a city with no shortage of spectacular high-end restaurants worth dropping a pretty penny on. Whether you’re inside a beautifully decked out venue or while looking at spectacular views of the water, Sydney’s swankiest, most popular restaurants create a dining experience you’ll never forget!

Rockpool Bar & Grillultimate fine dining

Rockpool Bar & Grill
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The illustrious Rockpool Bar & Grill is the big daddy of fine dining in Sydney. It is a cavernous, over-the-top dining hall built into an art-deco skyscraper in the CBD. Everything glimmers from top to bottom in what’s described as “Australia’s most beautiful dining room.”

You can bet your bottom dollar (which you’re definitely about to spend) that Rockpool has some of the choicest, most expensive cuts of meat on the continent. Every piece of premium beef is directly sourced, butchered daily, dry-aged on premises and contains no growth hormones or antibiotics. This being Australia, there’s also a first-class selection of seafood on the menu with locally sourced swordfish, spanner crab and jaw-dropping rock lobster for $210. Steaks are cooked over wood-fired grills, seafood inside charcoal ovens and all other cuts of meats over scorching flames.

As one of Sydney’s original fine dining restaurants, Rockpool Bar & Grill is always ready to impress. For a swanky night out on the town with a big date or client, Rockpool has all the glitz, glamour and grub you need to hit the spot.

Ariarefined and artistic

Aria Restaurant
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Amazing seasonal ingredients. Masterful tasting menus. Close-up views of the Sydney Opera House. Aria curates all of the best things about Sydney into one masterpiece of a restaurant.

Everything about Aria is refined and artistic. The interior is straightforward and elegant in order to highlight the superiority of the food, as well as the spectacular view. Because really, does the Opera House need any more dressing up? The ingredients and their presentation are striking in their attention to detail. Hyper-seasonal menus are crafted with only the top ingredients that best represent the bountiful continent. Get ready to try wild kingfish, black market sirloin and maremma duck in its most beautifully evolved form. Every entrée is exquisitely coherent so that you can anticipate the sophisticated balance of flavors before you even order.

Aria is definitely the hot table which every gourmand in Sydney is gunning for. If you’re lucky enough to snag a reservation, you’re definitely in for the dreamiest dining experience happening Down Under.

Catalinabest seafood

Waterfront views.
Waterfront views. Photo: Nadia Cho

Catalina is a beautiful Sydney institution of over 25 years, which floats above the glimmering harbor of Rose Bay. Catalina is the most polished version of classic waterfront dining. The luminous and elegant white-tablecloth dining room is encased in floor-to-ceiling windows that always look out to bright crystalline waters.

Catalina has been a close family business since 1994, so the service and ambiance feel warmer than most fine dining venues. The menu is less conceptual and geared more toward serving tasty dishes that the masses will enjoy. Expect super fresh seafood and meats with flavorful sauces and crunchy, satisfying textures. Be sure to try their mouthwatering Crispy Skin Cone Bay Barramundi. It’s the only barramundi in Australia that you’ll ever need to try!

Whether it’s for birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, first dates or a fancy power lunch, Catalina is there with gracious hospitality, fresh delicious food and sparkling water views. There’s a reason it’s stuck around for 25 years, and continues to be a steady favorite for Sydney-siders of all generations.

Momofuku Seiobopremium Caribbean cuisines

Aria Restaurant
Facebook Aria Restaurant

Momofuku Seiobo, located inside Sydney’s most luxurious casino hotel, The Star, was David Chang’s first restaurant venture abroad. With executive chef, Paul Carmichael from Barbados, at the helm, Momofuku Seiobo explores Caribbean cuisines, brought to life with bountiful Australian produce. The creative culinary gamble has certainly paid off since the very beginning. So far, the restaurant has garnered three hats from the Sydney Morning Herald, three stars from Gourmet Traveller and multiple Restaurant and Chef of the Year awards.

Breaking from David Chang’s Asian-focused cuisine, Momofuku Seiobo looks to “honour the cultures of the Caribbean and share the stories of the wonderful farmers and producers we work with”. The menu is an amalgam of colorful island-inspired creations along with familiar comfort food that showcases flavors from Puerto Rico, Barbados, Tobago, Haiti and more. It is clear that anybody who’s blessed enough to visit Momofuku Seiobo is in for a never-before-seen culinary adventure, that’s unlikely to be found anywhere else in the world.

Good luck finding a table though. The bar only seats five people at a time and dining room seating is reservations only, which can be made up to 90 days in advance for just 1-4 people.

Ormeggio at The Spithigh quality Italian

Ormeggio.
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Another breathtaking waterfront venue, Ormeggio at The Spit is a real stunner, located on a deck at the Spit Bridge. Seaplane or yacht is the preferred method of arriving at this swanky seaside joint. It’s a fabulous venue where you can enjoy a superior quality Italian meal while overlooking the glittering turquoise waters of Mosman.

What do you get when you combine innovative Modern Italian chefs with a fresh catch from Australian waters? You get Sydney rock oysters with raspberry and tomato emulsion, Yellow Fin Tuna Battuta crostini and charcoaled prawn spaghetti. The degustation menu allows you to try all the best menu items and takes you through a gorgeous little tour of Italy’s gastronomic regions. It’s no wonder Ormeggio at The Spit has the current title of NSW’s Best Italian Restaurant with two hats in Australia’s illustrious Good Food Guide.

With a sparkling waterfront venue and a menu to match, Ormeggio at The Spit is certainly worth the drive or boat ride to the other side of the Sydney Harbour. Ormeggio is everyone’s desired final destination after a long beach day or an afternoon of sailing around with cocktails aboard.

Nadia Cho

Communications Associate

Nadia reps Team JST traveling the world in search of exclusive features and online via JST's social media platforms. You can find her exploring metropolitan cities or lounging on tropical beaches.

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