Neutral Bay has always punched above its weight when it comes to dining, with lots of North Shore locals happy to frequent the great eateries in the area. With Covid restrictions, these local businesses need our support more than ever. Here’s our shout out to six relative newcomers to the Neutral Bay dining scene – we encourage you to head on in and give them a try!
Set in the leafy back streets of Neutral Bay, Henrys offers Japanese-inspired dishes designed to be shared – because who wants food envy! The sister restaurant to popular Henrys Cronulla, it’s a welcome addition in the former Woodland Kitchen site. With a natural modern interior (think black and white and rose-gold tones), it’s already popular for long lunches, date nights and family meals. There’s also a delicious cocktail menu and a wine list focused on biodynamic, organic and vegan varietals where possible.
Shop 2, 19-25 Grosvenor St, Neutral Bay
(02) 9904 3400
K-Town Korean BBQ House
Founded in 2020 by head chef Ethan Lee, this Korean BBQ house has diners in raptures as they prepare their own food at the stoves in front of them. Think barbecued meats including world famous wagyu beef, kimchi, vegetables, pickles and more. Aimed at satisfying a diverse Lower North Shore crowd with an authentic yet contemporary Korean dining experience, you’ll also find mind-blowing Korean fried chicken on the menu. It’s also possible to have smaller dishes via the bar menu – why not try some Korean soju (their national spirit) while you’re at it!
19 Young Street Neutral Bay
(02) 8018 7396
With little fanfare, Neutral Bay stalwart Firefly was recently replaced with a new venture by the same owners – an Israeli street food pop up! Diners can expect a cosy atmosphere brimming with mediterranean flavours from chef Nissim Elkabetz who originally hails from Eilat, Israel. Think eggplant, falafel, hummus, pickles and Israeli salad wrapped up in fluffy pita or served in a bowl – not any bowl, but an edible one shaped from fried ‘laffa’ flatbread. As their tagline says, they’re all about the humble Pita. It’s a sandwich, but not as you know it – unless you’ve walked the streets of Jerusalem. You’ll also find a range of sodas and spritzes, too, with flavours such as date and mint, pomegranate, sour cherry, and tamarind.
24 Young Street Neutral Bay
(02) 9909 0193
WingMill is an American-style chicken wings and burger joint that settled in to the Neutral Bay scene about a year ago. And beer – of course! As their tagline states: “It’s all about Birds and Brew”… There are eight types of wings, loaded fries, frickles (deep fried pickles for those not in the know) and a lot of beers on tap. And for the true old style American bar fan, there’s also US sports playing on big screens, and plenty of authentic tunes in the background.
9 Young Street Neutral Bay
0432 170 000
Against the Grind
Whilst not technically a newcomer (it originally opened two years ago), Against the Grind has undergone and recent expansion and renovation which we figure qualifies them for this list! Started by three friends looking to invigorate the area with some seriously good coffee, it has regularly seen queues keen to enjoy their ‘magic’ brews, and their popular ‘build your own breakfast’ from the menu options. With such success, and an originally small space, it made sense to knock through the tenancy next door and expand. Now reopened, they’re promising “a new dynamic and exciting space that will bring together amazing cured delicacies, the best coffee on the Lower North Shore and delicious food and wine”. beginning there was only darkness, there was no home for good coffee on the Lower North Shore. So three friends came together, each with their own distinct set of superpowers in an attempt to fill that void. Their aspirations and hard work culminated with the inception of what came to be known as Against the Grind Neutral Bay. It was an effortlessly stylish establishment, where all the surrounding community could parlay their morning fix of delicious coffee and unwind to a soundtrack of good tunes and hospitable service.
9 Young Street Neutral Bay
(02) 9953 5896
Alala’s at The Oaks
Taking residence in December along Ben Boyd back street with direct access to the garden, Alala’s celebrates the strong feminine lineage of The Oaks’ family owners, particularly late-matriarch Alala Thomas. Featuring an outdoor terrace overlooking the 80-year-old oak tree, the new bar and eatery is an ode to craftsmanship reminiscent of a country homestead, with a central cast iron oven filling the air with aromas of roasted vegetables, meats and baked goods. The menu includes five types of tartines (open sandwiches) and rotisserie items – think perfectly golden chicken and pork belly porchetta. And cocktails haven’t been forgotten – the signature Alala’s Pearl Diver features Bacardi blanca, pomegranate liqueur, farlernum). It’s just one more reason to head to The Oaks for a long lunch or dinner soon.
118 Military Road Neutral Bay
(02) 9953 5515
Coming soon… Chat Thai?
We’ve spotted a liquor license application under the name Chat Thai Neutral Bay, which means… the chain that is widely regarded as Sydney’s best Thai food could be moving in soon! Watch this space for more information.