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Four Sydney Chefs Share Their Favourite Local Restaurants for When They Don't Feel Like Cooking

Where do chefs eat on their nights off? Four Sydney chefs share their favourite local picks for a night away from the pass.
By Nik Addams
April 19, 2022
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By Nik Addams
April 19, 2022
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in partnership with

Cooking can be many things. For some, it's merely a means to an end; for others, it can be meditative to the point of being therapeutic. But no matter which side of the fence you fall on, there are days when we just can't be bothered doing it. And the same is true of professional chefs — after all, if you do something for a living there surely comes a point where you just don't feel like doing it in your spare time, right?

But where do chefs eat in their downtime? We've teamed up with UberEats to ask four Sydney hospo stars — Nelly Robinson of progressive fine diner Nel, Kenneth Rodrigueza of Donut Papi, Eddie Stewart of Tokyo Lamington and Josh Raine of Tetsuya's — about their top local picks for those times they feel like handing over the reins to someone else.

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Bella Brutta, Kitti Gould

GO-TO MEAL FOR A HANGOVER

Nelly Robinson: "It has to be pizza. If I could be bothered driving it would be Bella Brutta or Westwood, but Rocketboy [also] hits the spot. My go-to is [a] tomato base, cheese, sopressa, pepperoni, ham, peri-peri chicken and potato. Oh, and the garlic bread is a must — it's not your standard!"

Kenneth Rodrigueza: Spice and rice is nice for Rodrigueza the morning after a big night. His pick: spicy sashimi tacos and eel and prawn futomaki from Kujira in Ashfield. "The rice absorbs the excess alcohol in your stomach (not sure if this is scientifically proven) and the spicy sauce of the tacos wakes you up."

Loaded by BL, Kimberley Low

Eddie Stewart: The burg is the word for Stewart when it comes to hangover cures. "Loaded by BL always has my back after a not-so-amazing-feeling morning. [My order is] the Blame Canada with a side of poutine."

Josh Raine: Raine's go-to for a hangover was also once the location of a special occasion. "I love Erciyes Restaurant so much that a few friends and I shared a birthday dinner there a few years ago. My favourite dish is the Erciyes Special Pide, which is cheesy, meaty goodness and served up with a chicken iskender kebab. My girlfriend also rates the homemade lentil soup and Turkish bread."

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GO-TO MEAL FOR A DATE NIGHT

Nelly Robinson: "For date night, it would definitely be Indian from Delhi 'O' Delhi. You can't go past the samosa, chicken tikka, dahl, butter chicken, poppadoms and a naan."

Kenneth Rodrigueza: "When you CBF cooking, you always go to the restaurants that are consistent because you don't want to ruin a good night with a bad dinner. My go-to is Bar Asia in Annandale. It's very consistent with every dish but my favourite is its beef rendang, [which is] a slightly modern [version of] home-style cooking that reminds you of your parents' cooking — except you paid for it and it was delivered to you."

Josh Raine: "For us, it's Northeastern Family Chinese in Waterloo. We order the Sichuan hot spicy sauce chicken with curry fried rice — it's really epic every time."

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El Jannah

GO-TO MEAL FOR A NIGHT OF NETFLIX AND CHOW

Nelly Robinson: "It's El Jannah for me. I love the rotisserie chook with garlic sauce, tabouleh and pita. Also, the crispy chicken burger is amazing — I add cheese at home as well."

Kenneth Rodrigueza: "If you're watching a movie while having dinner, you don't need any cutlery to distract you. When I get bored of a normal burger, I switch it up to a Japanese-style burger from Gojima, which uses sushi rice covered in seaweed as a bun. The signature sauce is to die for."

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RaRa, Luisa Brimble

Eddie Stewart: "My go-to comfort dish for a Netflix night is Johnny Gio's Pizza — pizza and Netflix is the ultimate ritual. I always go for the pepperoni or the meatball."

Josh Raine: "My go-to comfort dish for a couch night is RaRa Ramen. I love the tonkotsu with housemate black garlic and chilli. Also, the vegan ramen is super tasty."

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Mapo, Kitti Gould

GO-TO DESSERT

Nelly Robinson: "We don't often order dessert but when we do, Serendipity's Death by Chocolate, which you can get from Rocketboy Pizza, is delish."

Kenneth Rodrigueza: "I always explore new and interesting flavour combos whenever I crave desserts. Hakiki's feta and rockmelon gelato, Peanut Butter Bar's cheesecake and Panntea's French cake milk tea with pearls are my faves."

Eddie Stewart: "Mapo Gelato — always. I reckon I can have a whole one-litre tub to myself, it's the best gelato in town. Oh, that gives me an idea — we need to collab on a lamington gelato, maybe with fior di latte or matcha?"

Josh Raine: "It has to be Rivareno Gelato. You can't go wrong in the slightest with any of the flavours — it has experimental flavours but if in doubt, go for the classics. The caramello salato and matcha green tea, in particular, are incredible."

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Don't feel like cooking tonight? Jump on UberEats to discover a new local favourite. Right now, the delivery platform is offering discounts on a heap of restaurants around Sydney from Monday to Wednesday — find out more here.

Published on April 19, 2022 by Nik Addams
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