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20+ more new places to eat in Canberra in 2020

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*sings* Hello stretchy pants, my old friend. I’ve come to put you on again…

It’s time to celebrate our thriving food and drink scene and help out those hospos who did it tough through smoke, hail and COVID—a shocker of a year for our beloved restaurants, cafes and bars.

But it’s never been more important to not just check out the new guys, but make sure you’re remembering your favourites and old faithfuls too.

However you like to eat and drink—support local.

Verity Lane Market (City)

Credit: Lean Timms.

The ultimate no-fuss food haven has opened in the heart of the city at Verity Lane Market. This European-style food hall is a (physically-distanced) social hub and the perfect place to grab a bite to eat from thoughtfully curated local food vendors. Not to mention the airy interiors and expansive deck with seating…

Also, may we add that there is a schmick bar (feature image)—perfect for clocking off at the end of a long week.

Read more here.

Sydney Building, 50 Northbourne Avenue, Canberra | @veritylanemarket

Queenie’s (Kingston)

Bow down to her majesty as Queenie’s opens up on the corner of Giles and Kennedy street in Kingston.

Owned by the team behind the Old Canberra Inn, Ben Johnston, Kalina Koloff and Nick Driver. A long-awaited feminine take on the Canberra pub scene, Queenies offers the perfect place to wind down (or up depending on how wild you want to go).

The menu offers an emphasis on sharing and offers native Australian flavours, but with a twist of Asian fusion. It’s outrageously lush, unapologetically quirky and open now Queens.

Read more here.

Corner of Giles and Kennedy Streets, Kingston | @queenieskingston

Armada Bar (Barton)

Queen Elizabeth might have been biting her nails when the Spanish Armada appeared on the horizon in 1588. But we think Canberrans are having the opposite reaction to The Boat House’s new outdoor bar, Armada Outdoor Bar.

Sitting cheek to cheek with Lake Burley Griffin, Armada Outdoor Bar takes advantage of The Boat House’s prime position, with spectacular sunset views.

All this as you sip a local beverage or two—there are plenty of familiar names on the drinks list, including Lark Hill, Nick O’Leary, Nick Spencer and Mount Majura—or perhaps a cocktail, with a curated menu of classics with a twist. Think Tommy’s Negroni or a Sunset Spritz.

Naturally, The Boat House chefs won’t be serving up any old bar snacks, with an elevated menu of nibbles on offer, including steamed bao buns with ginger soy eggplant, pickled cucumber and kewpie, wagyu beer tartare with smoked yolk, horseradish and potato chips, and roasted pumpkin with spiced yoghurt, pickled onions and crispy chickpeas.

Grevillea Drive, Barton| theboathouse.restaurant/armada

The Italian Place Providore and Bottega (Braddon)

Braddon’s continental food market has finally arrived— at The Italian Place Providore and Bottega.

If the affable owner of The Italian Place Tony Lo Terzo is confident of one thing, it is that his Canberra customers love traditional Italian fare.

The Italian Place Providore and Bottega takes out a floor space of 180 square metres and sells everything from fresh fruit and vegetables, wine and spirits, dried goods, bread, cured meats and smallgoods, every sort of imported tinned fish and tinned tomato an Italian home cook could want, plus olive oils, vinegars, and speciality ingredients from dried porcini mushrooms to dried herbs. Stock features the best of both local and imported brands.

The Providore will eventually feature a dedicated cheese room that promises to differ from Ainslie IGA’s (the competition is friendly, both Tony and IGA owner Manual Xyrakis are firm friends) and a room at the back will be reserved for functions and cheese-making, wine-tasting and cooking classes.

Out the front, meanwhile, passers-by can gaze onto window cabinets full of paninis, cakes, pastries, antipasto ingredients and quick lunches and take-outs, to be served from a counter window opening onto the street.

55/40 Mort Street Braddon | theitalianplace.net.au

Monster Kitchen and Bar (NewActon)

All vegetarians will understand the feeling of opening a menu to find that they have one or two options max.

Well, this will no longer be an issue as Monster Kitchen and Bar is cutting out meat from their menu for one whole year.

This brave and bold (yet totally delicious) move is thanks to renowned Executive Chef Paul Wilson, whose menu will showcase fresh produce and prove that veggies aren’t a side dish anymore

“We’re pushing the boundaries with vegetarian, from Hay Smoked Beetroot to Slow Roasted Carrot Terrine,” explains Paul.

Read more here.

Inside Ovolo Nishi, 25 Edinburgh Avenue, NewActon | @monsterkitchenbar 

The Hungry Brown Cow

 

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If you don’t know the name, we bet you know their best-selling brownie cookie sandwich, made famous from its pop-ups at The Forage and the Capital Region Farmers Market.

Now The Hungry Brown Cow has found a permanent home at the Holt Shops, and while they opened just this week with a curated selection of their famous brownies and baked goods, they’re also serving up egg and bacon rolls and coffee. Next stop, a full burger bar. We can’t wait.

Shop 4, Holt Shops, Holt | @thehungrybrowncow

Krakatoa (City)

Krakatoa takes Canberrans on a culinary adventure to South-East Asia via the flavours of Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand. And all you need to do is get yourself into Civic.

As the weather warms up across out city, imagine sitting down for an eight-course menu featuring a Thai beef and macadamia pie tee, tempura oyster with nashi pear and betel leaf, BBQ Padron with baby corn and whipped nuoc cham, kurobuta pork belly with prawn and peanut brittle sambal, charcoal-roasted rainbow trout with young coconut and avocado salad, wood-fired duck curry with lychee and chicken-fat rice and finished off with Krakatoa fruit salad and chilli-smoked chocolate with dragon fruit and ginger ice cream.

The pop-up is located inside Kokomo’s but will is built within the structure across two floors, with a few dramatic design flourishes to ensure people felt whisked away to new surroundings.

Inside Kokomo’s, 1 Genge Street, Civic | krakatoabbq.com.au

Department of Pizza (Campbell)

A long and narrow restaurant at the Campbell Shops, where the old liquor shop used to be, The Department of Pizza has high ceilings and a long bar, behind which a massive pizza oven cranks out Neapolitan-style sourdough pizza bases with minimal and ingredient-focused toppings.

Think four ingredients max, and absolutely no pineapple! We’re talking combinations such as a tomato base with fior di latte, prosciutto and roquette, or the garlic olive oil base with fior de latte, potato and rosemary.

All up there are 11 pizza options supplemented by three ridiculously moreish flatbreads including a gorgonzola and roast walnut, or a confit of garlic and cheese combo. There’s one wholesome roquette, cherry tomato and parmesan cheese salad and desserts of Nutella and strawberries or cannoli.

Read more here.

12 Blamey Place, Campbell | departmentofpizza.com.au

East Row Cafe (City)

A new offering in the city that will serve breakfast and lunch (and ONA Coffee!), East Row Cafe is helmed by a bunch of seasoned Canberra hospos—and we can’t wait to see what they serve up.

Opening soon.

121 East Row, City

Sushi Fresh (Braddon)

 

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Sushi Fresh‘s Chef Trey and his staff specialise in providing Canberra traditional freshly made sushi including nigari, sashimi, vegetarian seaweed salad, Teriyaki Chicken and crispy Tempura pieces.

Using local produce, Trey and his team continually cook and create throughout the day, to ensure the freshest product for customers.

32 Mort Street, Braddon | @sushifreshbraddon1

Project Onoki (City)

Credit: Ashley St George.

Located in Verity Lane Market is the brainchild of Chairman and Yip’s Gerald Ong—Project Onoki. Project Onoki delivers a menu derived from owner Gerald Ong’s Singaporean roots and Asian food adventures, whilst also incorporating modern Australian techniques.

Expect dishes like ‘lemon chicken, new style’ and ‘King prawns, salted egg butter & fried bread’ (pictured).

Intended to offer an indulgence experience at an accessible price, Project Onoki will be straight where we’re heading after a G&T on a Friday afternoon.

Inside Verity Lane Market, the Sydney Building, Civic  | @project_enoki

The George Bar (Manuka)

Rydges Canberra has refreshed its bar and introduced The George Bar to south Canberra.

Serving a deliciously diverse range of cocktails and breakfast, lunch and dinner tucked inside lush palm gardens, The George Bar is much more than just a watering hole.

Inside Rydges Canberra, 17 Canberra Avenue, Forrest | @rydgeshotels

Lava Coffee (Kingston)

 

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Masters of coffee, the team at Lava Coffee are opening up a new store in Kingston in early November.

Grounded by their passion to brew high-quality specialty coffee with respect and integrity, Lava will be offering a light menu, with favourites including toasties, toasts and a selection of local pastries—with the intention to expand this in the future.

The interior gives a nod to Scandinavian and Japanese designs, with raw wood, concrete finishes and large windows that drown the place in natural light.

34 Eyre St, Kingston | @lava_coffee

Wild Thyme (City)

Quinoa and watercress salad.

The cleverly-named restaurant has a modern Italian cuisine, a large range of fresh seafood, in-house hand-stretched pizzas, and seasonal specials.

While it has only been open for less than two months, early customer feedback suggests the scallops, pan-seared and served on a bed of almond romesco and pear tartare, topped with Avruga caviar with a crispy polenta quenelle is a popular choice.

While the decor is quite high end—think elegant dark wood, charcoal chairs, full-length sheers against full-glass walls and hints of brass—Wild Thyme aims for a warm and slightly playful atmosphere.

Read more here.

197 London Circuit, Civic | thesebel.com/australian-capital-territory/the-sebel-canberra-civic/bars-restaurants/wild-thyme-restaurant-and-bar

Eyre Street Markets (Kingston)

Signs are up and shopfronts are a hive of activity as Kingston’s new Eyre Street Market opens in the coming days and weeks.

A new strip of 13 eateries, specialty shops and a massive (no, seriously, it is huge!) Supabarn will be serviced by a 400-space underground car park—all overlooking Green Square.

Only the Supabarn is open at this stage, which includes a sizeable cheese section, butcher, fresh seafood selection, baked goods aplenty and a Home Kitchen where you can order a fresh-cooked pizza, deli goods, patisserie goods and fresh-churned gelato.

Public Service Announcement: every kid gets free gelato. We checked twice, and this seems to be an ongoing thing. It really is taking grocery shopping up a notch.

Wildflour Kingston will join soon, along with Tokyo Canteen, NOI NOI Vietnamese Kitchen, Mochacos Mexican Chicken Fiesta, V+IN+E and Lava (mentioned above).

Eyre Street, Kingston | eyrestmarket.com.au

Blackbird (City)

 

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This cheeky dive bar is tucked away in the Sydney Building and while it isn’t new, we haven’t written about it before—plus, given everyone had to close during COVID, we feel that what’s a few months old is new again.

Having opened in January, Blackbird offers a jazz-soaked hideaway for end of night festivities, where velvet and leather meet expertly-mixed cocktails and live music.

112 Alinga Street, City | @blackbird.canberra

No. 10 Restaurant and Bar (Belconnen)

 

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No.10 Restaurant + Bar opened its first sister restaurant in north Canberra earlier this week as part of Geocon’s Republic mixed-use precinct by Lake Ginninderra.

Offering breakfast, lunch (including express lunch options), dinner, drinks and function offerings, No.10 is excited to welcome the north side with open arms.

3 Grazier Lane, Belconnen | number10restaurantandbar.com

Ramen Daddy (City)

Credit: Ashley St George.

Whilst not new to the foodie scene, Ramen Daddy is new to the city.

Kind of like a free-spirited hippy, Ramen Daddy has been moving from pop-up to pop-up the last couple of years but they’ve now found a home to call home in the Verity Lane Building.

A labour of food love from The Boat House chefs John Leverink and Eddy Ming, Ramen Daddy’s menu is ramen as it should be—simple and delicious.

Offering a variety of different ramens including their fan favourite rich chicken ‘Tori Paitan’ and a plant based ginger glazed tofu – there will be plenty of options to suit everyone.

Inside Verity Lane Market, the Sydney Building, Canberra | @ramendaddycbr 

Pialligo Food Emporium (Pialligo)

 

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The complete artisanal experience is opening up soon at Rodney’s Nursery. Local family Emma Toll and Nathan Kleinig have been romanticising the idea of a providore for years now, and are finally able to make it a reality.

Offering a curated selection of artisan cheeses, cured meats, local wines and fresh pasta, the Pialligo Food Emporium is the perfect place to swing by on your way home from work to create an effortless luxury food experience in your dining room.

Keep your eyes peeled on their social media as they’ll be opening in the next couple of weeks.

Rodney’s Nursery Pialligo | @pialligofoodemporium

Sushi Go (Kingston)

Toot toot! All aboard the newest sushi train in Canberra.

Sushi Go is a must go. Offering fresh sushi, bento boxes, ramen, dumplings and udon, you’ll feel like you’re tasting the streets of Japan in the heart of old Kingston.

Shop1/1-11 Kennedy Street, Kingston | Facebook

Pizza Artigiana

Credit: Ashley St George.

Piping hot Neapolitan-style wood-fired pizza is at your fingertips every day thanks to Pizza Artigiana‘s new home in Verity Lane Market.

With a curated list of just four pizzas on offer—Pizza Bianca (garlic oil, rosemary and sea salt), Margherita (tomato with fior di latte mozzarella and fresh basil), Nduja and Cheese (hot Nduja salami and fior di latte mozzarella) and Orotolana (Mozzarella with grilled eggplant, peppers, mushrooms and basil)—the choice is easy.

Inside Verity Lane Market, the Sydney Building, Canberra | @pizza_artigiana

Brodburger (Phillip)

Credit: Ashley St George.

Phillip is now home to the long awaited Brod Caravan. From the legends at BrodBurger, the caravan will be offering their signature burgers and hot dogs. Located in the car park outside of hip pocket workwear on Hindmarsh drive, it’s the perfect pitstop or lunch break. Opening soon, keep an eye on their social media to be the first inline.

Read more here.

The Pauls Centre, 91 Hindmarsh Drive, Phillip | @brodburger

Feature image: Verity Lane Market by Lean Timms

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