Food, glorious food!
Australia has fantastic produce, and that, coupled with a truly multicultural society has made Aussie cuisine one of the best in the world because you can find food to fit a wide range of palates, done expertly, and with the very best ingredients. And if you like coffee... wow. I'm a bit of a coffee snob and I will pit an Australian cup of coffee against anywhere else on the planet. The baristas here have mastered the perfect cup.
Here are a few of my favorite spots that you're unlikely to find in the tourist guides:
Bellagio Cafe (@bellagiocafe, 285 Bronte Road) -
About a 15-20min walk down Bronte Rd from Bondi Junction station, the walk is worth it for the awesome coffee and food, and if the walk built up your appetite, you're in for a treat. So much great food to choose from, and I went all out on their big breakfast with farmers ham, smoked brisket, cilantro creamed corn, sausages, egg and avocado smash on sourdough with a mango parsley salad. Don’t judge me...
And I love how they have water and a friend to keep your dog company whilst you eat..
*Tip: If Bellagio is too far to walk, you can try their sister cafe, the Nelson Road Tuckshop, only 5 minutes walk from Bondi Junction station along Bronte Road. Equally amazing coffee and excellent food, (although, the atmosphere is better at Bellagio).
Calabur Cafe (@calaburcafe, 51-53 Spring Street) -
Located on Spring Street in the heart of Bondi Junction is an awesome Asian/Aussie fusion cafe. Great vibe and super friendly owners/staff. Amazing food and wonderful coffee!
If you're wondering what an "Asian/Aussie fusion" dish looks like, try the Japanese soft-boiled Onsen egg with spicy tomato relish, smashed garlic-basil avocado, roast asparagus, saffron strands and cherry tomatoes with smoked ham or salmon on sourdough. Out of this world.
(Photo: Yolla Saw)
For a lighter breakfast option, they also do a yummy fruit, yoghurt and honey bowl. Mmmm....
*Tip: Calabur turns into a hip dinner spot and bar at night, so you get to enjoy its awesomeness at different stages of the day.
Osteria Riva (@osteriariva, 96 Bronte Rd):
This small, family owned Italian restaurant located 5 minutes walk down Bronte Road from Bondi Junction, has been around for a while. But unlike a lot of restaurants that have been open for years, this one is constantly busy every single night, and for good reason. This is the most delicious and authentic Italian food I've had outside of Italy (and a damn better sight than most of the restaurants in Rome). If you're craving Italian whilst you're in Australia, this is the place.
*Tip: reservations are highly recommended, and request the handmade pasta noodles with whichever sauce you order.
Ramen Ikkyu -- Located on the top floor food court of 401 Sussex Street in Chinatown (10 minutes walk from town hall or central station). Who doesn't love a good Ramen? And whilst Manila has some of the best ramen I've ever tasted, Ikkyu does it with a tonkatsu braised pork rib (including the bone) that made my tastebuds do backflips of happiness.
*Tip: if you're feeling extra hungry, they'll happily give you additional noodles for free!
The Rockpool Restaurant (@rockpoolgroup) -
Located on Hunter street near Martin Place station in the city, this fine dining restaurant is a Sydney icon, and for good reason. The flagship restaurant by world renowned chef Neil Perry, it prides itself on sourcing the best local organic, sustainable and free range ingredients and making dishes that melt in your mouth. I had the lamb chops with multiple sides wild mushrooms, creamed corn and potato and cabbage gratin (which tastes sooo much better than it sounds).
(Photo: @rockpoolgroup instagram account
because I inhaled the food before
remembering to take a photo)
Located on the 2nd floor of World Square on George street, about 5 minurwa walk from Town Hall station. The Americans made the humble burger a household name, but it was perfected by The Burger Project using all natural, free range, grass fed Australian beef and locally sourced organic products (not surprisingly, they are part of the Rockpool Group). The beef patties are ground fresh every morning on site and you can really taste the difference. They're big believers in sustainability, so all their packaging is 100% recyclable and they encourage customers to use the appropriate recycle bins.
*Tip: Make sure to try the duck fat fries and heavenly soft serve ice cream (made with milk and cream without the usual extenders and chemicals).
*Special thanks to my Sister Yolla and her boyfriend Alex for introducing me to some of their favorite cafes in Bondi.
**All photos taken by my @powermaccenter iphone7 in a @lifeproofph waterproof case
Special thanks to @rudyprojectph for my eyewear, @piquadroph for my luggage and @theheadware for my all-purpose tube scarfs
WWF Philippines National Ambassador &
WorldVision Philippines Ambassador for Disaster Risk Reduction and Preparedness