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Eight of Sydney's Best Delis For Your Next Antipasto Spread

Your search for the best cured meats, tinned seafoods, imported cheeses and jars of marinated vegetables ends here.
By Ines Francesca English
September 30, 2021
By Ines Francesca English
September 30, 2021


Your search for the best cured meats, tinned seafoods, imported cheeses and jars of marinated vegetables ends here.

There are few things more exciting for fellow foodies or experienced home-entertainers than walking into a delicatessen — a retail space designated for foods that are hard to come by and special in their own way. Foods that are delicacies, as the name implies.

Whether you're after a grazing platter for your next dinner party or searching for some easy-to-pack goods to take down to the beach for a picnic, delis are an important go-to one-stop-shop. From tinned martinis made in Sydney to marinated octopus imported from Spain, read on for the best delis Sydney has to offer.

  • 8
    Continental Deli Bar Bistro

    Halfway down Australia street in Newtown, you may think you’ve stumbled through a portal to somewhere in Europe. Outdoor dining with wicker chairs, red and cream hand-painted signage and cured meat hanging from hooks are some tell-tale signs that you’ve come to the right place when looking for a good ol’ fashioned deli. Continental Deli may have only opened in 2015, but it has an authenticity in its atmosphere and importantly, in its food. Part deli, part wine bar/restaurant, Continental’s motto runs along the lines of quality, not quantity. Here, you’ll find rare cheeses and quality charcuterie, but also a unique and impressive selection of canned and tinned foods. Not beetroot and spaghetti-os, but anchovies from the Bay of Biscay, sardines from France and clams and cockles from Galicia. They also can their own items from local produce, along with their famous tinned cocktails.

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  • 7
    Paddington Alimentari

    Paddington’s Alimentari, the Italian deli-cafe on picturesque William Street, has made a name for itself for its menu consisting of simple meals made from high-quality produce. Somewhat of an institution, toasted paninis stuffed with crispy prosciutto, juicy tomatoes, gooey buffalo mozzarella and fresh basil have made Alimentari every Paddington local’s favourite. However, it also has a small, yet perfectly curated deli section. Its glass cabinet includes truffle pecorino and french d’affinois, specialty goat, cow and sheep cheese and strictly Italian-only prosciutto, including crowd favourite, prosciutto di San Daniele. Alimentari also has a stunning leafy courtyard, which is one of Paddo’s best kept secrets.

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  • 6
    Blackwattle Deli

    Nestled amongst seafood stalls and a fruit and veg market in Sydney Fish Markets, Blackwattle deli is one of the most impressive delicatessens around. This deli has some of the finest cheeses on offer, such as a smooth and creamy Rouzaire Truffle. The list of specialty charcuterie and antipasto is extensive, including a rich truffle salami, a smooth duck and cherry pate, spreadable nduja and tender marinated octopus which goes down well with some of their classic Sicilian green olives and paprika chorizo.

    Image: Erik Dungan

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  • 5
    Omeio Artisanal Deli

    Heavily influenced by owner Nick Giourgas’ Greek and French heritage, Paddington’s Omeio Artisanal Deli is both a neighbourhood coffee shop and a well-stocked delicatessen. Amongst bread and croissants from local Sydney bakery Organic Bread Bar, you’ll find a cracking selection of cured meats including kangaroo with chilli, duck with juniper berry and venison and cranberry. Omeio also sells artisan chocolate, classic Greek coffee, and a small but well-curated selection of cheeses. If you’re feeling a little lazy and can’t be bothered to put together your own charcuterie or picnic spread, you can order premade Spanish, Greek or French mezze boxes ranging from $35 to $85.

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  • 4
    Small's Deli

    Potts Point eatery Small’s Deli opened just before the first New South Wales lockdown in early 2020, but that didn’t stop word of the sandwich hot spot from spreading like wildfire. Famous for their delectably fun sandwich combos and fresh salads, Small’s Deli also has a wonderfully curated offering of meat and cheeses that will be sure to impress your guests at the next backyard drinks sesh. Iggy’s bread, Oritz anchovies, Reuben Hills coffee beans, pickled pineapples and hotluck sauce with mushroom and garlic XO are some of the goods you’ll find stacked up on shelves of this eastern suburbs favourite. Your sandwiches and deli goods also come in some very cute old-school red and white grid deli paper, which if we are being honest, makes the whole experience even more exciting.

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  • 3

    First things first, Lamonica IGA is not your average supermarket. It’s as authentically Italian as a deli can get in Sydney. As soon as you enter, you know it’s going to be good — the whole shop smells like those little hole-in-the-wall delis you find in Italy. In each aisle, customers browse with baskets filled with mammoth jars of marinated artichokes and house-made arancini balls. The line of people clutching ticket stubs at the deli’s glass cabinets is also a testament to how right Lamonica IGA gets it. Its expansive cheese selection is matched by an expansive cured meats selection and an expansive antipasti selection. It also won’t cost you a pretty penny, Lamonica IGA is cheap as chips compared to other cheese shops and delicatessens, so you can really go ham on your charcuterie board when shopping here.

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  • 2

    If you’ve ever driven to Sydney’s eastern beaches via Old South Head Road, you’ve probably noticed the mammoth sign about truffles, caviar and mushrooms hanging outside Gourmet Life. When you enter the shop, it’s as if you’re in some sort of specialty food wonderland, with aisle upon aisle of delicacies that will make your jaw drop and your stomach rumble.

    Some standouts include tinned asparagus with lobster, which is $46 and imported from Spain, jars of zucchini and tuna marinated with capers, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice in extra virgin olive oil, and jars of wild onions marinated with hot pepper, fresh mint, garlic, lemon and herbs for $22 each. Its cheese selection is nothing short of impressive, with regular shipments from France and Italy. As far as Italian cheeses go, you’ll find gorgonzola dolce, truffle pecorino and fresh burratina amongst a lineup of French cheeses including fleur de nuit soft cheese, Rouleau Fume soft goat milk cheese, and a Cremeaux des Augustins washed rind.

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  • 1
    Tenth Muse

    Tenth Muse has made a name for itself as the go-to specialty food store on Percival Rd, Stanmore. It dedicates itself to supplying quality ingredients and harder-to-find foods that inspire home cooking and entertaining. Just like any good specialty food shop, Tenth Muse offers an extensive range of pantry staples along with international cheeses, locals meats and other gourmet refrigerated provisions. On its website, Tenth Muse also has a large array of recipes and articles, as well as an online shop with a section of products stocked in its brick-and-mortar shop.

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Top image: Arthouse Studios

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