If you’ve just hopped off the last flight to Sydney, taken a taxi or Uber to your hotel and would rather check out the local dining opportunities than the contents of your minibar, savvy business travellers and night owls are in luck. Unlike some major cities in Australia, Sydney has a variety of late-night establishments and eat precincts located centrally, where you can dine out after 10pm – and it’s not just fast-food fare. Here’s where to eat after hours in Sydney.
A stalwart of the late-night dining scene, the area around Haymarket between Darling Harbour and Central Station is the go-to spot for after-hour eats. In fact, top Sydney chefs have been known to pop into BBQ King when their own kitchens shut for the night. Open until midnight in the new Liverpool Street location, BBQ King’s Peking Duck is its most famous and popular dish. Golden Century Seafood Restaurant is another late-night favourite – the comforting congee menu is available from midnight to 4am.
Don’t discount the area around Pitt Street, between George and Elizabeth streets in Haymarket, affectionately known as Thaitown. Chat Thai on Campbell Street offers a supper menu from 9:30pm to 2am where you can sup on grilled meat skewers, spicy salads and fragrant curries and soups or sample a silky Thai dessert.
If sweet treats are your weakness, make tracks to Surry Hills, just southeast of Sydney’s CBD and near Central Station. Here you’ll find Gelato Messina on Crown Street, open until 11pm from Sunday to Thursday and until 11:30pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Choose daily from 40 freshly churned flavours of gelato and sorbet, minus the early evening queue.
Surry Hills also does a mean trade in late-night chicken dinners. Sample the finger-lickin’ Southeast Asian seasoned chicken at Juicy Lucy on Elizabeth Street (open until 11pm Thursday to Saturday), or try the fried chicken and Champagne combo at Butter on Hunt Street (open until 11:30pm on Fridays and Saturdays).
Darlinghurst and Paddington
A hop, skip and a cab ride from Sydney’s CBD is the inner-city locale of Darlinghurst. Find late-night eat streets along Victoria, Oxford and Stanley streets in this popular entertainment district of bars, restaurants, cafes and clubs. Head to Bar Brosé on Victoria Street for French fare – it’s open until 11pm on Wednesdays and Thursday and until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.
A little further up the road is Paddington wine bar 10 William Street, which serves up a carefully curated menu of Italian dishes with an extensive wine list until midnight from Monday to Saturday. The Paddington is another reliable spot where you can feast on a hearty meal with a pint in cosy pub surrounds. Located on Oxford Street, the kitchen is open until midnight from Monday to Thursday and until 3am on Saturdays and Sundays, with a late-night menu of cheeses, cured meats and more available after 10:30pm.
You can also dine after the evening rush at one of Sydney’s most popular restaurants, Mr Wong. The fine-dining Cantonese restaurant on Bridge Lane in Sydney’s CBD is helmed by celebrated chef Dan Hong and you can partake in a dim sum platter selection and eight types of tea on the late-night menu –available until midnight from Thursday through to Saturday.
Another hot new-ish restaurant in the CBD is Hubert, just down from the Prime Minister’s office on Bligh Street. Open for dinner until 1am from Monday to Saturday, Hubert is a warm inviting space pairing affordable French and Francophile cuisine with fine wines.
But if a pizza is what you crave, pop down to Frankie’s Pizza by the Slice to satiate your cheesy desires. This CBD pizzeria on Hunter Street, just down from Hubert and also owned by the Swillhouse hospitality group, is open until 3am seven days a week. Available by the slice or whole, your pizza comes with a side of eventful ambience – no quiet nooks here – so you can really become acquainted with after-hours Sydney.
Feature image: Getty