Cuisine: Modern European

We’ve enjoyed a few restaurants at this charming location on the edge of the Annandale village and we’ve come to expect a pretty high standard here. The latest team doesn’t disappoint. We’ve always loved the heritage-style room with its nooks and crannies and contemporary decor — pure Annandale — and we also love what’s coming out of the kitchen: your entree could be escabeche of mackerel and baby herb salad, your main perhaps twice-cooked Kurobuta Berkshire pork belly with apple, pumpkin and broccoli polonaise. Desserts are the luscious likes of oven-baked rhubarb clafoutis or you could go all out on a chocolate assiette: chocolate and Cointeau icecream, Chambord chocolate fondant and white chocolate and peanut brittle parfait. Good wines, too. Entrees $16, mains $28 and desserts $14. Check the website for weeknight deals. 

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Cuisine: Modern European,Seafood

It’s Saturday lunchtime and this attractive, open-to-the-street space is a pleasure to be in, not least because of comfortable, back-supporting wooden chairs. The long screed on seafood sustainability makes compelling reading while we wait for our orders. A starter of ceviche white fish cured with lime and green chilli $17 is a beautifully handled tangy appetite kicker. Beer-battered fish and chips $21 — MSC-approved New Zealand hoki — offers generous tranches of flavoursome fish with both tartare and chilli jam. The table star is chermoula-marinated albacore $28.50 cooked to pink-centred perfection. This is excellent value for seafood of this quality served by well-informed waitstaff. A welcome addition to the inner west.

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Cuisine: Modern European,Seafood,Greek

It sits there on Johnson Street looking a little lost but don’t be put off by the incongruity of a Greek restaurant on this low-key shopping strip. Locals have long loved it and make up most of its clientele — always a good sign. The main menu features all the usual Greek suspects; tiropitakia, feta and spinach wrapped in filo $11.50, is always a good way to start. Obviously, lamb is an important part of the menu and if you can bear to have a change from the superb slow-cooked lamb dish, the arnissia paithakia, chargrilled lamb cutlets served on skordalia garlic mash with either a red wine or lemon sauce $26 is exceptional. Their pistachio baklava icecream $10 is the reason many give for going back again and again. Ask about specials, which change with the seasons. Saturday night, the bouzoukis come out.

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Cuisine: Modern European,Seafood,Greek,Japanese

How much do we love this lively local Japanese eatery? Lots, and it’s as popular with Australians as with their Japanese customers. Sure, the decor is basic but then again so are the prices — and that’s what attracts the students. The sushi runs from $4.50 to $7 and includes salmon toru (belly), unagi (eel), tobiko (flying fish roe) and hamachi (kingfish). Once you’ve had Ninja balls (deep-fried balls of mashed potato and minced chicken) $8.80 it’s impossible not to order them every time; then there are the more substantial dishes, such as sukiyaki for two $42.80, tender ponzu yaki beef $16.80 and chicken katzu $16.80. There’s a good vegetarian selection and the banquet is $33/$39, minimum eight people. Of themselves they say: “Delicious! Nutritious! Bit slow but friendly!” How can you not be charmed by such candour?

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