Seafood, sunshine and views of the harbour… these are exactly what come to mind when I picture a perfect afternoon lunch in Sydney – especially when it’s to celebrate a birthday! Although the majority of fine dining establishments are still closed in the city mid-week, there is one place which thankfully remains open for business… Sydney Cove Oyster Bar – an iconic establishment with the freshest seafood and best views in the city.
Operating for over 32 years, Sydney Cove Oyster Bar is the number one restaurant I think of when it comes to a luxurious & long lazy lunch, dinner or cocktails combined with sunset water views. There’s simply no place quite like it – attentive service, a varied menu and some of the finest wines & drinks available, to wash down that seafood you simply won’t be able to resist ordering! And whilst yes, they certainly are renowned for their oysters, trust me when I say there’s a lot more to choose from here to satisfy your tastebuds.
And this is why I’ve I returned to this foodie sanctuary for the second time in a month, to celebrate my birthday earlier this week! Here’s what I had from the menu for my special day:
Sydney rock oysters
Because can you really visit Sydney Cove Oyster bar and not try these?! They also have Pacific oysters as well as Kilpatrick oysters (with bacon and worcestershire sauce); however, I went for a couple of the Sydney rock oysters and wasn’t disappointed. They were mouthwateringly fresh and washed down perfectly with a drizzle of fresh lemon squeezed on top.
Sourdough bread with balsamic vinegar and olive oil
Anyone who knows me well is aware that I can’t pass up a decent bread plate. Especially one that comes complete with an olive oil & balsamic vinegar accompaniment! This always seems to take me back to my first experience dining in both Florence & Rome in 2015, which was a complete gastronomic holiday in itself.
Spectacularly fresh just like the oysters…. and served unpeeled which I honestly don’t mind. Peeling a plate of prawns reminds me of past Christmas celebrations and there’s something to be said about taking part in the process of preparing your own plate of seafood. These were plump and washed down wonderfully alongside the very more-ish Marie Rose dipping sauce & a drizzle of lemon. I had the 350g plate with a side of crisp cos lettuce – but honestly I could’ve eaten another 5 plates, they were that delicious (and I can’t ever resist king prawns)!
Pouring some champagne
Sharing a bottle of Veuve Clicquot, this was the natural bubbly of choice to celebrate my birthday and enhance this incomparable seafood lunch. Whilst I generally veer towards reds such as Bordeaux or Chianti, I have to confess champagne is a must-have element alongside a seafood lunch which elevates the entire experience for me. Wait staff will walk by and ensure your glass is topped up regularly too!
I’m quite extreme when it comes time to “dessert” – opting for either something with chocolate or veering towards the savory end with a cheese board. Sydney Cove Oyster Bar offer up two types of cheese – their Comte 18 month cheese (which is quite similar to a cheddar) alongside a blue cheese. Paired with red grapes, dates and apple slices, this was the ultimate choice to finish off a seafood lunch with a flourish. I only wish I took photos or a video of the cheese board to share with you on the blog… however at this stage I was honestly too focused on savouring the cheese & fruit!
Apart from the wonderful food, drink & service, this gem of a restaurant has breathtaking views of both the Sydney Harbor Bridge and the city skyline of the CBD. With the sunshine out and sparkling off the gentle water like diamonds laid out in front of us, there was truly no better place to enjoy my birthday lunch than at Sydney Cove Oyster Bar. With spring and summer ahead for the next half a year here in Australia, I can’t wait to return again to this happy place soon.
I hope you have enjoyed this review of Sydney Cove Oyster Bar – it’s a restaurant I would wholeheartedly recommend anyone visit, whether you are a local or tourist in Sydney. You can check out Sydney Cove Oyster Bar’s website, Facebook and Instagram for further details…. but make sure you book in advance if possible, because this is a very popular spot. One look at the photos and videos in this article should certainly demonstrate why…