Albee’s Kitchen, Campsie
Albee’s is a great little hole in the wall Malaysian place in bustling Campsie. Think a small, simple space with picture card menus on display, packed with hungry patrons. We had prawn laksa and chicken satay, both delicious, but the menu’s extensive and there’s lots more to try, including some Sarawak specific dishes from the owner’s homeland, each available only on specific days. One to return to!
Thai Paragon, Marrickville
An unassuming looking little eatery from the street, inside, Thai Paragon looks and feels just like a cute, contemporary Thai place you’d come across in Bangkok. The staff are super friendly and the food excellent value and really authentic, from a slow cooked mussaman curry to tasty chilli basil chicken. And they even give you chocolates at the end.
El Loco, Surry Hills
An explosion of colour (think hanging pinatas) in an otherwise cavernous, simple space, El Loco is a festive and fun taqueria and bar. Part of the Excelsior Hotel and the Merivale empire, El Loco features $5 tacos and cocktails of the margarita persuasion. Try the Pink Cuco ‘house slushie’ made with pink grapefruit juice and the spit roasted pork taco with pineapple salsa – so good.
Tokonoma Lounge, Surry Hills
All sleek and chic and moody, this is the bar at Toko, a gorgeous Japanese restaurant with izakaya style eating (wih many a gourmet twist). There’s an amazing light fixture and curved wooden ceiling feature, an extensive menu of sake, shochu, wine and cocktails, and you can order some of the snacks from the menu at the bar – loved the spider maki roll with soft shell crab.
A gelato experience up there with Gelato Messina, Gelatomassi is an award winning gelateria for good reason. The chocolate is rich and luscious, the mango amazing and the pannacotta, sweet and light and moreish.
Pasticceria Papa, Haberfield
This corner pasticceria in Sydney’s Italian hub is almost always packed, with people queuing for biscotti, gelato, cannoli and cake from one of the most enticing, sweet laden counters I’ve ever seen. So many sweets, so hard to decide, so I stuck to cannoli and they didn’t disappoint.
Sideways Deli Cafe, Dulwich Hill
Sideways does a really good chocolate brownie. At $4 a pop it’s a no brainer addition to a coffee order – moist, fudgy and most importantly, not sickly sweet (yes, this sweet tooth has limits!). There are friands, muffins, and cakes aplenty here too – the pear and chocolate cake is another winner.