Kisha Patel is an official CAPA blogger for spring 2016, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A political science and gender/women's studies major at Ursinus College, she is studying abroad in Sydney this semester.
In this week's post, Kisha tackles everyone's favorite subject: Food!
I love food and Sydney has the most amazing melting pot of cultures and cuisines which is definitely a big plus for me. Here are some of the best meals I have eaten so far! They range from under $5 to about $30 meals (working on a broke college student budget!).
Here is my money rating scale:
$ : $1-$10
$$ : $10-20
$$$ : $20-30
Disclaimer: I am a vegetarian, so this post is a little biased toward my veggie loving self, but if the vegetarian option is this good, I’m sure you can get a great meat option too; most of these meals were consumed with meat-eating friends who enjoyed their meals!
“There is no sincerer love than the love of food.” - George Bernard Shaw
CATEGORY 1: DESSERT (The most important part of the meal first)
1. MAX BRENNER'S CHOCOLATE BAR. Max Brenner has the most amazing selection of chocolate I have found, plus many locations across the city. For those of you who live in Urbanest Central, there is one located very conveniently behind us on Mountain St. (and the Salted Caramel Milkshake is a MUST try!!) They also sell individually wrapped chocolate treats which make a great (and relatively cheap for gourmet chocolate) present. I bought a bunch of chocolate bricks for my flatmates on valentines day! $$
Photo by Maddie Jazwinski
“Anything is good if it’s made of chocolate.” – Jo Brand
2. ANITA GELATO. This place is hands down my favorite gelato joint in Sydney. It is hidden in the back of Central Park Mall and has a beautiful lit up garden view if you go at night time. Try the Mascarpone Blueberry Gelato, it will change your world. $$
Photo by Maddie Jazwinski
3. DOUGHNUT TIME. If you’re still hungry after your gelato from Anita’s, Doughnut Time is conveniently located a few steps away, also in Central Park Mall. Definitely worth a visit for some gourmet doughnuts with flavors like “nutella stuffed, blueberry and cinnamon, Ferrero Rocher” and many delicious more! $$
CATEGORY 2: BURGERS (because I consider them a individual food group)
1. RIBS & BURGERS. THIS IS THE BEST BURGER I HAVE EVER HAD IN MY ENTIRE LIFE. Go here. Please. This lovely restaurant is located near Circular Quay in The Rocks. They have a huge menu of ribs and burgers and this mushroom burger changed my world. I had “The Veggie Patch Burger” which was portabello mushroom, spanish onion, mozzarella cheese, arugula, tomato, crispy onion strings and aioli. Also the milkshakes and onion rings here are to die for. $$$
“The only think I like better than talking about Food is eating.” - John Walters
2. THE BURGER PROJECT. I honestly can't tell you which was better, this “Magic Mushroom Burger” or the chipotle chili fries I ate with it. Together, they made a perfect meal out with my flatmates. There are locations all over the city, but this one was at George St and a quick walk to Darling Harbour which is where we spent the rest of our night after this great meal. $$
3. BURGER FUEL. This is a great place to hit up if you are a vegan. It is located in the trendy hipster area of Newtown and has many great veggie/vegan options like this “Combustion Tofu Burger” with tofu, teriyaki sauce, avocado, and peanut satay sauce. BurgerFuel also has GREAT sweet potato fries and their speciality, “Motobites” which are crumbled pumpkin, chickpea, carrot and ginger bites. $
"Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread and pumpkin pie." -Jim Davis
CATEGORY 3: OTHER ENTREÉS (to fill up on before a night out in Sydney)
1. HOTPOT. I had hotpot for the first time in Sydney. I went out to grab hotpot with my coworkers from my internship and now it is one of my favorite things to eat in Sydney. Hotpot locations are on every other street corner in Chinatown which is great. You start off by picking a spice level in your broth (picture below: extra spicy and mild) and then you order all the ingredients you want (meat, tofu, veggies, noodles, rice, dumplings, etc). These ingredients come out raw or frozen and you dump them into your boiling “hotpot” in the middle of the table. (Price estimate varies on your meal as you pay per ingredient ordered). Definitely do this with a larger group because you will be amazed at the amount of food you get per order. $$-$$$
Photo by Martina Aleksandrova (co-worker)
“Food, in the end, in our own tradition, is something holy. It's not about nutrients and calories. It's about sharing. It's about honesty. It's about identity.” - Louise Fresco
2. EAST BANK CAFÉ. This is the most pricey meal on my list. It's located in Circular Quay, but it comes with outdoor seating right on the Sydney Harbour and a beautiful view of the Harbour Bridge. I went out here with some of my flatmates to celebrate Galentine's Day (the day around Valentine's day that celebrates and appreciates the girl friends in your life). It is a great place to go for an occasion. I got the Mushroom Risotto (can you tell yet that I love mushrooms?). **but remember that while this meal can be close to $30-40 AUS, it is not as expensive in US dollars! $$$
"One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virginia Woolf
3. THE SODA FACTORY. This is the place to go for a cheap and filling meal on Tuesday nights. The Soda Factory does $1 gourmet hotdogs on Tuesday nights that are great. They also have a veggie and vegan dog! My favorite is the “Elvis Presley” which is a deep fried banana in a hotdog bun with peanut butter and strawberry jam. Featured in this picture is “The Yoko One” which is a veggie sausage, avocado, tomatoes, lettuce, and cheese. Disclaimer: for every three hotdogs you buy, you must buy one full price item on the menu or a drink. $
"You don't need a silver fork to eat good food." - Paul Prudhomme
4. GRAZE ON MAIN. This isn’t exactly in Sydney, but I stopped at this café on my trip to see the Blue Mountains and I was not disappointed. It was the handmade sweet potato gnocchi with a blue cheese and parmesan cheese sauce that I still have dreams about. I am dying to go there again for this meal. $$
5. BLISS AND CHIPS. FOR ALL MY VEGETARIANS AND VEGANS: If you don’t want to go home without having tried the iconic “fish and chips” head to Newtown to visit Bliss and Chips. They serve meatless traditional dishes that include fish, chicken, crab, and more, but all made with a soy product. They even give you a vegan tartar sauce. It is delicious. (Plus the meat eaters with me said it tastes exactly like the real thing). $
6. CHIPS ON A STICK. I got these at food truck during the Chinese New Year Lunar Markets but you can find similar vendors all over the city, including in Chinatown. They peel a potato perfectly so it is all still in tact as one in a cool spiral. Then it is fried and dipped in the seasoning of your choice. They have options such as satay, salt and vinegar, chicken salt, chili, ect. A great snack to get while exploring the city. $
I hope you all get a chance to check out some of these great food locations and enjoy them as much as I did. As the iconic foodie, Julia Child, once said, "People who love to eat are always the best people.”
Kisha's journey continues every Wednesday so stay tuned.