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By the glass at A Tavola Darlinghurst

A Tavola, meaning 'to the table' was the daily call to the dinner table for Chef and owner Eugenio Maiale. Growing up in an Italian kitchen is a special experience that as  a non Italian I have always been in awe of. It’s like growing up in the best restaurant where daily prep is not spared to mere minutes, but half a day of devotion. This is what qualifies Italians to be the authority on all matters culinary. Eugenio started his education in pasta making in his family's kitchen and his Mama sure taught him well. A Tavola Darlinghurst was a hive of activity on our arrival. A small dedicated army of friendly chefs were rolling out long sheets of pasta along their...

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By the glass at One Ford Street

  This place is close to my heart. My twin brother Sam Bennett is the head chef here and I am so proud of him. He serves humble Italian inspired dishes that are always big on flavour, simple yet original. Yeah, yeah you are probably thinking, talking up her brother, but guess what Sydney's media agree! Last year he was awarded one chef's hat in the Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Awards along with many more favourable mentions in the press. One Ford Street is a restaurant connected to The Cricketers Arms pub in Balmain. The unassuming pub has an inconspicuous stairwell leading down to a leafy green oasis. This is not your average pub restaurant, more of a restaurant in its...

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By the glass at The Stinking Bishops

Look at the smiles! The Stinking Bishops in Newtown is my happy place. Not only do they offer more than 40 of the world’s best cheeses, but they are also some of the nicest guys in the business. Kieran Day and Jamie Nimmo who own and run The Stinking Bishops, work together like wine and cheese, a restaurant match made in heaven. Kieran was a chef with big ideas and his good friend Jamie was looking for a career change from the film industry. Jamie's design ability and Kieran's know how in the kitchen, combined with their solid business minds, saw The Stinking Bishops born. They have been catering for cheese lovers' needs for over two years now. The Stinking Bishops offer great...

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By the glass at Lucio's

Walking into Lucio's in Paddington is like visiting your most arty friend, who has a collection you can only dream of, along with a warm welcoming embrace. Every available wall space is adorned by Australia's finest artists work. We were seated beneath Lucio’s latest addition, 'Sacred Fish' by Imants Tillers, hung only that morning. Lucio's offers old school Italian charm with genuine Italian waiters welcoming you inside. And Lucio Galetto himself is the host of all hosts. The restaurant has the warmth that only a family run restaurant can create. Lucio and his wife Sally and their two children Matteo and Michela, have all worked or work in the restaurant. Matteo has now opened his own successful restaurant, Capriccio, in...

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By the glass at AJO

Ajo! and eat... Ajo is Sardinian for let's go. I was lucky enough to go and spend last Friday lunch in the light and airy dining room of AJO at the Welcome hotel in Rozelle. Ajo has just retained its Chef Hat in the Sydney Morning Herald Good Food awards. And for good reason too. Ajo is a regional Italian styled restaurant that has a focus on Sardinia. Chef Daniel Mulligan's food philosophy is to cook food that is simple and seasonally driven, using only the freshest local ingredients. Daniel fine tuned his skills under the knowing eye of Giovanni Pilu for eight years as head chef of Giovanni's two Chef Hat restaurant Pilu at Freshwater. Well let me tell you this guy has skills,...

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