By Greedy Financier
Yes I’m a skeptic – when it comes to restaurants with a view. But one restaurant with a view that I absolutely love is Café Sydney! With stunning views overlooking Sydney Harbour and amazing food, Café Sydney has become one of my favourite restaurants to dine at.
Views of Sydney Harbour from Café Sydney
On this particular visit, we came for a casual Sunday lunch. If you love your seafood, Sunday is the day to visit Café Sydney, as only on Sunday’s do they have grilled seafood specials (as well as their usual a la carte menu), accompanied by the sound of live music.
Café Sydney offers both indoor and outdoor seating. We specifically requested outdoor seating when we made the booking, and did not regret the request given that it was such a gorgeous Summer’s day. Beware of booking an outdoor table in Winter though – it can get a little chilly, but they do provide you with blankets when the weather gets cold.
Kiwi Crush Mocktail and T2 Iced Tea
It was a pretty warm day, so we decided to start with some refreshing beverages. The kiwi mocktail was very tart – hardly surprising since it had fresh kiwi fruit, lime and passionfruit syrup in it. The iced tea was sweet and almost cordial like with cherry overtones.
Kingfish Carpaccio (a special)
We chose the kingfish carpaccio and oysters as our starters. The carpaccio was a delightfully fresh appetiser which had bitter and salty flavours emanating from the grapefruit and fish roe respectively.
Sydney Rock Oysters with Eschalot & Caramelised Cabernet Vinegar
If you’re going to order seafood, you have to order some oysters. I generally prefer the Pacific Oyster; however we were informed that they were currently spawning. Nonetheless, nothing beats freshly shucked oysters, and the accompanying dressing was sublime – a neat concoction that was sweet from the red wine and flavoursome from the eschalot.
Grilled Seafood Platter for Two – Swordfish, Octopus & Chorizo, Moreton Bay Bugs and Scallops with Fennel Puree (a Sunday special)
For the main, we couldn’t go past ordering the grilled seafood platter. Every piece of seafood was cooked to perfection and infused with lovely flavours. The side mayonnaise that came with the platter was very creamy, however, to be honest, lacked flavour, and was unnecessary given how well the seafood was cooked and seasoned. I absolutely loved the octopus and smoky chorizo combination with super sweet blistered cherry tomatoes.
Grilled Seafood Platter for Two
The swordfish was a hearty piece of fish that made me feel like I was eating grilled chicken. The Moreton Bay Bugs had plenty of flesh and were covered in a fantastic garlic butter sauce. The scallops were so plump and juicy, and were complemented beautifully by the coleslaw and fennel puree.
Sea Salt Chips
To satisfy a deep fried food craving, we also ordered a side of chips. The shoestring fries came with a “healthy” dusting of sea salt, and were the perfect accompaniment to the seafood platter.
Mango Pannacotta, Strawberry Ice Cream, Marinated Strawberries and Mango (a special)
To top off a superb seafood lunch, dessert was ordered. The smooth as silk, yet firm pannacotta was reminiscent of eating mango pudding at yum cha with a robust mango flavour, which combined wonderfully with the real strawberry ice cream (it tasted of real strawberries, not the overly sweet fake strawberry flavour!) and pieces of marinated fruit. Fresh, fruity and relatively light – mango pannacotta is the ideal Summer dessert!
Fried Banana, Peanut Butter Parfait, Salted Caramel Peanuts, Chocolate Ice Cream
In stark contrast, the fried banana and peanut butter parfait dessert was deliciously rich! The banana had a light batter which was crispy and came with plenty of cinnamon. The peanut butter parfait had a heavy dusting of cocoa, and in conjunction with the chocolate ice cream, was simply scrumptious! The salted caramel peanuts and toffee brittle added a lovely salty dimension to the dish, as well as a delectable crunch.
Café Sydney is one of my favourite places to dine at in Sydney. It’s one of those restaurants that can be “dressed up or down”. It can be a relaxing place to spend a casual Sunday afternoon – kick back with a cocktail or two, indulge in some seafood, listen to the live band, and soak up the views and vibe. Or if you’re looking for a formal dinner venue - crack open a bottle of wine, order from the a la carte menu and talk over the sparkling lights of Sydney Harbour. Café Sydney really is a restaurant for all occasions.
Monday to Friday 12.00pm – Late
Saturday from 5.00pm
Sunday from 12.00pm for Lunch
Ph: +61 2 9251 8683
Level 5, Customs House
31 Alfred Street
Circular Quay Sydney