Open ... Ox Eatery, at East Hotel, Kingston.
Open ... Ox Eatery, at East Hotel, Kingston. Photo: Melissa Adams

Those of you who regularly spend Christmas in Canberra will know the difficulty in trying to find an open restaurant (or a good coffee shop). It's doubly frustrating if you have relatives in town and you want to show them your favourite spots to convince them that Canberra is a dining destination.

To help out, we've done the call around to our top restaurants and cafes and singled out the ones that remain open - for the most part - over this tricky time (I'd book in advance).

Ox Eatery

Spiced chargrilled spatchcock with orange puree and apple and radicchio slaw, at Flint in the Vines at Shaw's Vineyard, Murrumbateman.
Spiced chargrilled spatchcock with orange puree and apple and radicchio slaw, at Flint in the Vines at Shaw's Vineyard, Murrumbateman. Photo: Graham Tidy

This excellent new rotisserie grill on Canberra Avenue has a gin and whisky bar as well as a restaurant (6178 0041). It is closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day, but otherwise open right through, Monday to Saturday, including Christmas Eve. 69 Canberra Avenue, Kingston. See easthotel.com.au.

Le Tres Bon

This gorgeous, atmospheric country-style French eatery, in the main street of Bungendore, is closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but otherwise open normal hours (lunch Wednesday to Sunday, dinner Wednesday to Saturday, 6238 0662), including an a la carte Boxing Day lunch. 40 Malbon Street, Bungendore. See letresbon.com.au.

Flint in the Vines

Out at Shaw Vineyard, Flint is closed Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, but otherwise open normal hours (lunch Thursday to Sunday, dinner Wednesday to Saturday, 6227 5144). Flint also has Christmas Day lunch. 34 Isabel Drive, Murrumbateman. See flintinthevines.net.au.

Jewel of India

In the Melbourne Building and in Manuka (6162 1845) Jewel is closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day and on January 1, but otherwise open, including the period from December 27 to 31 (in the city, it will be dinner only). 24 West Row, city. See jewelofindia.com.au.

Francisco's Mexican Cantina

This Mexican joint (6239 6201) is closed on Christmas and Boxing days but is open on December 27 with chimichangas, nachos and smoky ribs. They also serve a Mexican breakfast. In Manuka Village shopping centre, Furneaux Street. See franciscos.com.au.

The Hyatt Hotel's Promenade Cafe

This cafe is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner (6269 8810) and the Tea Lounge (6269 8815) will continue to serve morning and afternoon teas each day. Brunch in the garden is from 11am on Saturdays. 120 Commonwealth Avenue, city.