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Josh and Julie Niland's one-of-a-kind nose-to-tail approach to seafood brings sea urchin crumpets and charcoal-grilled garlic pipis to the North Shore.
By Ben Hansen
July 07, 2023
By Ben Hansen
July 07, 2023

Josh Niland's list of accomplishments is too long to rattle off — from radically changing Sydney's perception of seafood through to best-selling books, and acclaimed restaurants including being named in the world's top 100 best chefs in 2022. Josh and his partner in crime Julie Niland have blazed a singular trail — and the wins just keep rolling in with more new restaurants opening and on their way.

Up until 2023, you would have had to travel over to Sydney's east to taste the Nilands' boundary-pushing no-waste seafood at spots like Saint Peter (our pick for the best restaurant in Sydney) and Charcoal Fish. But now, you'll find it across the bridge in St Leonards.

Petermen brings the typical Niland passion and inventiveness to the North Shore in the form of a 60-seat restaurant and bar. The name is a nod to the Saint Peter ecosystem. The original Niland restaurant gets its moniker from the patron saint and former fisherman Saint Peter. This holy seafood enthusiast was the inspiration behind fellow fishers being called Petermen in the 1400s.

Rob Palmer

As expected, the ever-changing menu leans heavily on the fruits of the sea. Start your night by ordering from the shared dishes heroing raw fish — such as South West Rocks line-caught bonito, Corner Inlet snapper with stag seaweed and Mooloolaba yellowfin tuna with capers. And, from the preserved lineup, highlights include Port Lincoln berrima octopus and Espelette pepper, Flinders Island scallops and Jervis Bay mussels.

For bigger bites, options span Manjimup marron with curry butter, Coorong pipis with garlic and chilli, Flinders Island southern calamari, and sweet and sour Ulladulla blue mackerel — all from the charcoal grill.

There's also plenty of hearty veggie dishes and some well-loved Niland favourites to discover on the menu. The St. Helens long-spine sea urchin crumpet is one of the chef's classics and an absolute must-try.

Petermen brings the Saint Peter experience to a wider audience, bringing this one-of-a-kind seafood dining further northwest. With more seats than the tiny Paddington original and longer opening hours (including lunch on weekends), there are more opportunities for you to nab a spot and experience the wild sustainable seafood creations emerging from Josh Niland's mind.

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