As special as a Christmas lunch at home with family and friends can be, it can also be equally as stressful. If you’re the one hosting, you’ll need to buy the groceries, cook, clean up before your guests come over, and tidy up afterwards too.
If all that isn’t too appealing to you this year, and you’d rather not burden anyone else with the trouble of hosting at home, consider having Christmas lunch at a restaurant instead. Many put on set menus with traditional Aussie Christmas dishes, like prawns, oysters, and pavlova, and are adorned with festive decor.
We’ve put together some of these spots in Sydney. From a Surry Hills’ urban garden restaurant to an institution restaurant along Woolloomooloo Finger Wharf, these are some of the best places in Sydney for a long Christmas lunch. Note that many require you to book ahead, so ensure you do so to avoid missing out.
Watch the waves roll in at a no-doubt packed Bondi on Christmas Day at Promenade Bondi Beach, which opened this year. A shared set menu on the day includes 10 dishes, including cherry-glazed ham, Moreton Bay bugs, and charcoal oven-roasted Wagyu beef, for $220pp. If you’re not up for the set menu, grab a seat at the venue’s front yard bar and order a la carte from a limited menu.
For a stress-free Christmas Day with friends and family, head to The Winery. The Surry Hills urban wine bar and restaurant will be serving a three-course tasting menu, plus a two-hour premium beverage package, for $189pp. The share-style menu includes freshly-shucked oysters and poached tiger prawns, followed by mains of crispy skin salmon fillet and turkey ballotine with prosciutto and creamy potato mash. Kids under 12 will be catered for with a mini smorgasbord for $39pp, which includes dessert and a drink.
A three-course set menu, drinks package and views of the Opera House are what’s on offer at Harbourfront Seafood Restaurant’s Christmas Day lunch, running 12-3pm. Dig into fresh king prawns, fried calamari, and eye fillet, served with kohlrabi puree and fermented spring onion, as you soak in the (hopefully) sunny weather in your al fresco seat. Lunch here will set you back $260pp, $200 for teenagers without alcohol, and $150 for kids aged 12 and under.
Wolloomooloo Finger Wharf is a popular Sydney spot to celebrate special occasions, so it’s a great option for Christmas Day lunch. At Kingsleys on the special day, you’ll be treated to a four-course set menu with chilled and hot seafood entrees, like Sydney rock oysters, spanner crab salad, and seared hokkaido scallops, and mains like beef tenderloin and fondant potato and turkey ballotine with porcini stuffing. Two-hour seating times can be booked from 12pm, with $229pp getting you the four courses and a glass of bubbles, beer, or bellini on arrival.
For Christmas Day lunch at a hawker-style bar and restaurant, Little Pearl will be serving a 10-course set menu with a 2.5-hour drinks package for $199pp. For those 13-17 years old, it’s $90pp, while those under 12 are $45pp. Lunch includes dishes like kingfish sashimi, wok-tossed szechuan king prawns with crispy noodles, and beef cheek panang. For dessert, tuck into pavlova with yuzu curd, mango, and kaffir lime.
For a feast of a Christmas Day lunch, head to Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park. Hosted in The Grand Ballroom, the set menu features all the Christmas dish classics, like tiger prawns, slow-roasted turkey and fruit mince pie, as well as a tempura bar, charcuterie bar and carving station. The lunch is on 12-3pm, and will set you back $375pp with kids 4-12 years old $199pp.