Ten of the best pubs in NSW
Best dessert ... Australian Heritage Hotel, The Rocks. Photo: Supplied
1. Best overall pub
Imperial Hotel, Paddington
This is what a pub should be. And it's not just the food. There's a real bid to engage the community here. Ultra-friendly, professional, with a smart fitout.
2. Best country pub
Patonga Beach Hotel, Patonga
Eating seafood on the patio, with a view of boats in Brisk Bay, is a totally memorable dining experience.
3. Best pub chef
Mitchell Davis, Landmark Hotel, Eastwood
As head chef at the Duck Inn Pub and Kitchen, he put it on the foodie map - and looks like doing it again at the Landmark.
4. Best service (team)
The Clarendon Hotel, Newcastle
The staff are professional, warm and friendly - they go out of their way to make you feel welcome, are fantastic with kids and it appears they have excellent training.
5. Best view
The Lennox Hotel, Lennox Head
This is a corker - a spacious balcony overlooking Seven Mile Beach. Pine trees, waves, sand and horizon as far as the eye can see.
6. Best dessert
The Australian Heritage Hotel, The Rocks
The most amazing dish is the pavlova stack, a tottering, creamy confection topped off with a cherry, standing tall above a passionfruit coulis and flanked by a couple of slabs of rocky road.
7. Best use of local produce
Eltham Hotel, Eltham
Chef Graeme Stockdale uses stacks of local produce, and he's got a veggie patch, too … and kitchen scraps go to the publican's chickens.
8. Best value for money
Forest Lodge Hotel, Glebe
Most things on the menu are about $10-$15. You don't see that anywhere that knocks out this kind of quality food.
9. Best burger in a pub
Australian Youth Hotel, Glebe
Soft buns, beautifully seasoned meat, melted cheese, lettuce, beetroot and mustard mayo - this pub delivers burgers with the lot.
10. Best pizza
Centennial Hotel, Woollahra
There's a wood-fired oven, thin crusts and imaginative toppings deliciously rendered. What more is there to say?
THE RESULTS: the Good Pub Food Guide 2013 Schooner awards
The Sydney Morning Herald Pub Food Guide 2013 will be available for purchase this Saturday with the paper for $5. It is also available for pre-purchase via The Sydney Morning Herald bookshop.