For the lucky inhabitants of Surry Hills, the dining scene continues to go from strength to strength as restaurants hailing from Thailand to Lebanon settle into this culinary hub. From the heart of Crown Street all the way to the city fringes, the only major issue facing those searching for a top takeaway or a delightful dinner out is: where do I start?
What they do: All-day breakfast and lunch. Classic favourites with a Japanese influence.
Why you need to try them: If you're hurting for a plate of pure, explosive euphoria with a Japanese twist then the crazy mind of Chef Kenny has got you covered. From lighter bites, like the Umami Mushroom Toast with poached eggs, to the more substantial Signature Katsu or the gorgeous Brekkie Burger complete with wasabi hollandaise and milk bun, Kentaro delivers a playful yet absolutely satisfying breakfast or lunch experience in ways you've never tried before.
Where: Brooklyn Depot
What they do: Handcrafted burgers, hot dogs, salads and desserts, all inspired by Old Brooklyn
Why you need to try them: Put off the diet, slam-dunk the calorie counter into the bin, Brooklyn Depot is not here to help you slim down, it's here to whack you in the taste buds with everything in its flavoursome arsenal. Prepare for burgers, ribs, wings, thick shakes, unbelievable sweets like the Double Waffle Ice Cream Sandwich, Caramel Pecan Brownies and a whole bunch of other offers you can't refuse. Everything is served up with a little side of Old Brooklyn attitude too, as their handcrafted burgers with names like 'Flip the Bird', 'On the Lam', 'Fun Guy' and 'Fuhgeddaboudit' will attest.
Where: Nada's Lebanese
What they do: Hefty Lebanese meat dishes and vegetarian delights including hummus, babaganouge and tabouli.
Why you need to try them: "Our hummus game has been strong since 1977" – with a tagline like that, how can you not want to give them a shot? Whether you're after a meaty treat of grilled lamb sprinkled with coriander, garlic and lemon juice, or a vegetarian feast of delightful dips, deep-fried filo pastry and stuffed vine leaves, Lebanese is the way to go.
Where: Chicken Institute
What they do: Fried chicken like you've never had before
Why you need to try them: "Damn good chicken" is what you can expect from the place that rightly calls itself an institution and an authority on the subject. Chef Heaven Kim can show you fried chicken prepared in ways that will make both your eyes and your taste buds pop. Whether it's covered in sticky peanut sauce, garlic glaze or peanut butter and coconut, there's a whole new world of fried chicken waiting to be explored.
Where: Uber Thai
What they do: Thai signature street food
Why you need to try them: All the flavour, fragrance and immediate good feeling of authentically Thai street food has been successfully transported to the heart of Sydney. Soft pork neck skewers vie for your attention alongside addictive Thai spring rolls, pad thai and fish cakes with fresh kaffir leaves, not to mention wonton and fish ball soups that are just bursting with zest and flavour with every spoonful.
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