When you arrive in Chinatown Sydney, find a tea house or cafe and get into the mood with a hot cup of Chinese tea then head straight to the Paddy’s Markets under Sydney’s Market City. Here you will find stalls that sell all need for your kitchen – from knives, chopping boards to that perfect wok. Also my personal fav – to check out the amazing vegetables, herbs and spices, fresh fish and meat. Of course there are stalls and stalls to cater for all the needs that you can imagine.
Or simply absorb the wonderful atmosphere and history that makes Chinatown in Sydney so special and for us brings back a memories of living in New York City and the iconic Chinatown area of Manhattan. This is a Sydney must do for a visitor but also the place for locals to enjoy some of Sydney’s best Asian foods. After all of that foodie stuff, go up stairs to Market City or cross the street into some of the many shops and arcades. Take a look at some of the fashions, which of recent times have really become quite international – really worth the hunt to find some great things.
And there are still a lot more great foods to try – Peking Duck – BBQ King (Goulburn St) – probably the best in Sydney – you can takeaway or eat in. For ingredients that you don’t find in many shops – try Doong Nam A and Co (Cnr Hay St and Ultimo Rd).
Cakes and bakery – lots to choose from here – and if you love Emperors Puffs (this is a must) – try these golden, fluffy puffs filled with sweet egg custard via the ’through the window’ service at Emperor’s Garden Cake and Bakery in Dixon Street Mall. The wait in line can be quite testing on a Sunday, but worth every mouthful when you get them. Also there’s the Japanese bakery ‘Fuji Pan’ at 605 George Street (entrance from Goulburn St) – really worth a look.
Then there’s the restaurants – and not just Chinese – there’s Malaysian, Japanese, Thai and more – some of our picks are Mamak in Goulburn St – the queue outside tells you how good the Malaysian food is. One of the specialities here is the roti – try the roti bawang – filled with finely sliced cooked red onions and the true flavours of Malaysia.
Mamak Malaysian Restaurant
15 Goulburn St Chinatown Sydney NSW 2000
For Cantonese food and a trip to 1960‘s Hong Kong, Try this old fav of ours Golden Century in Sussex St. One of their specialities is pippies in XO sauce. Golden Century is consistently the haunt of Sydney chefs like Tetsuya Wakuda from Tetsuya’s and David Chang from Momofuku and Neil Perry from Rockpool and Spice Temple.
Golden Century Seafood Restaurant
393 Sussex St, Chinatown, Sydney NSW 2000
But for something different, try Shanghainese food – there’s now restaurants featuring food of Shanghai. A friend of ours who lived in Shanghai for many years directed us to Taste of Shanghai in World Square. We made our way through the 40 plus page menu including dumplings (Xao Long Bao – a speciality, rice and noodle dishes, mud crab, salt and pepper prawns and vegetable dishes.
In the end, we went for the Peking Duck – served in two courses and Choy Sim in Garlic sauce. The first duck course was the crispiest duck skin cut into squares, with a sliver of duck breast attached – served with pancake wrappers, cucumber batons and hoisin sauce to assemble your own duck pancakes The second course – a choice of san choy bow or stir fried noodle – we went for the classic mince and fresh lettuce cups.
Now duck pancakes are a favourite of ours – and these were perfect – crispy skin, crunchy coolness of cucumber with the sweet sauce – magnificent. The san choy bow also excelled and perfectly complemented by the choy sim and the garlicky sauce. If you haven’t sampled the difference between Cantonese and Shanghainese cuisine, it’s worth a try and we agree with our friend.
Taste of Shanghai
After lunch and as the afternoon races on – if you have room left for more wonderful food, head to N 2 Gelato Lab and try some of the interesting flavours of gelato like Black Salted Caramel, Earl Grey Tea, or Buttered Popcorn to list a few from N 2 Gelato Lab.
You can spend the whole day in Chinatown Sydney and still have much more to try -like an easy walk around the Chinese Gardens, this is a real must, so beautiful all year. And at the end of your Sunday, catch a movie around the corner in George Street - on the way home you know you are living the city and everything in it. That’s inner city life.
Here’s where to find some of the places to visit in Chinatown Sydney;
- N2 Gelato – Shop 43/1 Dixon St Chinatown
- Chef’s Gallery – Shop 12 (facing Bathurst Street),Ground Level Regent Place Shopping Centre, 501 George Street, Sydney NSW 2000
- Golden Century Seafood Restaurant, 393 Sussex St, Chinatown, Sydney NSW 2000
- Mamak Malaysian Restaurant, 15 Goulburn St Chinatown Sydney NSW 2000
- BBQ King, 18 Goulburn St Chinatown Sydney NSW 2000
- Taste of Shanghai, World Square, 644 George St Sydney NSW 2000
- Chinese Gardens – southern end Darling Harbour
- Din Tai Fung – World Square, 644 George St Sydney NSW 2000
- The Eight Restaurant – Market City
Try Sunday in Chinatown Sydney – particularly if you haven’t been there for a while.