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Postcode On A Plate: 2600

Emma Macdonald

Once weighed down by its political postcode, Barton is fast becoming a foodie hotspot—for every type of diner.

WINE BUFFS

VINCENT

Image: Tim Bean Photography.

Wine bar-cum-restaurant Vincent should be out of place in a suburb that likes to play by the rules, but its refusal to toe the traditional line makes it an exciting find for foodies and wine buffs alike.

From its unconventional serpentine table layout to its unapologetic single dessert option, expect the unexpected when it comes to Vincent.

Its interior is dark and moody, one wall devoted to Scrabble tiles spelling out a menu of eleven dishes: five small plates, five large and one sweet choice to finish. A carefully curated list of local and international wines is designed to perfectly match each dish.

DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT TRYING: Peking duck: coriander, orange, chilli and cashew.

Every mouthful is an adventure with this dish. Succulent pieces of duck are sandwiched between layers of crispy wontons, with a surprising addition of tart raspberries cutting perfectly through the rich flavours. Wash it down with a glass of Domaine De Triennes Rosé 2016.

48 Macquarie Street, Barton | Open Tuesday and Saturday: 4 pm – 10 pm, Wednesday to Friday: 12 pm – 10 pm | 02 6273 7773 | vincentrestaurant.com.au

TRADITIONALISTS

OTTOMAN CUISINE

If it’s hip nonchalance and culinary gimmicks you’re after, best look elsewhere. But if you’re seeking the best Turkish food outside of Istanbul, Ottoman Cuisine is the place to be. A stalwart of the Canberra dining scene, this elegant art deco pavilion is surrounded by gardens, water features and palm trees—an escape from the political machinations which surround it.

The food is every bit as impressive today as when it first opened in nearby Manuka in 1992. Inspired by Chef Serif Kaya’s culinary heritage, Ottoman’s dishes are consistently hatted—and while they may sound and look simple, there’s a complexity of flavour that speaks to a mastery of the genre.

DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT TRYING: Dolma – Atlantic salmon, Queensland king prawns and shitake mushrooms wrapped in vine-leaves, crispy battered, served with piquant red wine sauce.

This is a dish that people speak of in reverent tones. Generous chunks of succulent of salmon are wrapped with their companion ingredients in vine-leaves before hitting the deep-fryer. Instantly addictive and never forgotten, this is the dish that turns traditional dolmades on their head.

9 Broughton St, Barton | Open for Lunch, Tuesday to Friday: noon – 2.30pm, and Dinner, Tuesday to Saturday: 6 pm to 10 pm | 02 6273 6111 | ottomancuisine.com.au

LADIES (AND MEN) WHO BRUNCH

LITTLE BIRD

The key word when it comes to Little Bird is ‘fresh’. A bright and light-filled eatery with inviting breakfast and lunch offerings, it’s an uncomplicated and satisfying choice.

Traditional favourites sit comfortably on its menu, but are elevated beyond the ‘same old’ through the use of pristine produce and an experimental edge. Those with a sweet tooth will want to linger by the cabinet boasting a dizzying array of cakes baked fresh in-house.

DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT TRYING: Maple-Roasted Pumpkin Salad with beetroot, quinoa, feta, sumac, avocado with smoky baba ganoush.

Delicious enough to convert the most strident carnivore, this hearty salad packs a real flavour punch: sweet, tangy, smoky all in one mouthful.

Corner of Macquarie and Broughton Streets, Barton | Open Monday to Friday: 7 am – 3 pm, Saturday and Sunday: 8 am to 2 pm | littlebirdbarton.com

CAFFIENDS

RITUAL

An airy oasis at the base of the Little National Hotel, Ritual does such a brisk trade on weekday mornings that they’ve invested in a PA to ensure the hordes of public servants are promptly caffeinated.

Great brews coupled with a small menu of toasts (we love the Avo and Goats Cheese with Dukkah), toasties (The Reuben wins most popular vote), one salad that they don’t dare replace, and a selection of baked goods make Ritual a winner.

DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT TRYING: Couple a creamy cappuccino with one of Ritual’s chocolate chip cookies (with a Rolo in the middle for an oozy caramel surprise!).

A caffeine and sugar hit in one fell swoop.

21 National Circuit, Barton | Open Monday to Friday: 7.30am–3.30pm | 0432 329 390 | ritualbarton.com

POWER LUNCHERS

THE CHAIRMAN & YIP

The Chairman & Yip is something of a Canberra institution, its original CBD digs the scene of many a power lunch since it opened its doors 25 years ago.

In 2016, it was merged with sister restaurant Malamay into its Barton HQ—the result, a sophisticated space which brings together the best elements of Cantonese and Szechuan cooking, served with care.

DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT TRYING: Eye fillet beef and scallop pepper hotpot.

Traditional Cantonese cooking with bold bursts of black pepper, and just as appealing as it was 20 years ago. Juicy beef, tender scallops and an explosion of flavour in every mouthful.

1 Burbury Close, Barton | Open for lunch Tuesday to Friday: 12 noon – 2:30pm; dinner Tuesday to Saturday: 6pm – 10:30pm | 02 6162 1220 | chairmangroup.com.au/chairmanyip

AND THEN THERE’S

BUVETTE BISTRO & WINE BAR

Petit Feast. Image: supplied.

Oh-so-French, Buvette is a little slice of Paris in the Parliamentary Triangle.

Relax with a glass of wine from the Canberra region or further afield while sharing charcuterie and cheese, or indulge in the full all-day dining experience.

18 National Circuit, Barton | buvette.com.au

LILOTANG

Image supplied.

It’s elegant Japanese fine-dining meets izakaya raffishness—full of flavour and matched by an impressive Sake list of more than 25 varieties.

1 Burbury Close, Barton | chairmangroup.com.au/lilotang

MAPLE + CLOVE

 

Image via facebook.com/mapleandclove.

Maple + Clove is all about serving wholefoods as close as possible to their natural state, with little or no refinement or processing. Being healthy has never been so tasty.

7 Burbury Close, Barton | mapleandclove.com.au

OSTANI LOUNGE + BAR

Image via facebook.com/ostanicanberra

Whatever your appetite, Ostani truly delivers with a range of European-inspired dishes.

The traditional oven-fired pizzas are the stars here: from Salsiccia E Taleggio with Italian sausage, chorizo, taleggio cheese, caramelised onions and thyme; to the eastern influences of Hoisin Duck.

18 National Circuit, Barton | facebook.com/ostanicanberra

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Emma Macdonald

Emma Macdonald has been writing about Canberra and its people for more than 20 years, winning numerous awards for her journalism - including a Walkley or two - along the way. Canberra born and bred, she’s fiercely loyal to the city, tribally inner-north, and relieved the rest of the country is finally recognising Canberra’s cool and creative credentials. More about the Author