When it comes to dining out, there's a time and place for wine-matching all seventeen courses. Sometimes, a gal just wants to wash down a pizza (or a burger, or a bowl of ramen) with her own damn bottle of wine. That said, Sydney's range of BYO dining options runs the gamut from cheap and cheerful to save-up-all-year destinations. Here's our pick of the best - be sure to add your own!
The best Italian BYOs
With their bubbly charred crust and classic toppings, you can spot a Pompei's pizza a mile away. The friendly Bondi joint has a decent, if small, wine list, featuring all-organic drops. But if you're so inclined, you can also bring your own.
126-130 Roscoe St, Bondi Beach
Pizza bresaola from Rosso Pomodo. Photo: Sahlan Hayes
Often touted as the best pizza in the Inner West (with apologies to relative newcomer, Gigi's), this Balmain stalwart serves up simple, authentic pizza - and lets you bring your own wine, to boot.
90,91/24 Buchanan St, Balmain
What better to match with a metre-long surfboard of pizza than a bottle you've been saving for a special occasion - or even just one you picked up from the bottlo down the road?
141 Longueville Rd, Lane Cove
The best Asian BYOs
Maya Da Dhaba
There's a lot to love about this Cleveland St veteran - including its moreish range of Indian sweets - but one of the best things about it is that you can BYO wine and beer. As it should be.
431 Cleveland St, Surry Hills
Yum gai chicken and lemongrass salad from Spice I Am by Sujet Saenkham, photography by Rob Palmer, published by Lantern, RRP$39.99 recipe march 28 Photo: Rob Palmer
Spice I Am
Fragrant with lemongrass and chilli, the always excellent dishes on offer at Spice I Am match well with crisp, light whites. And while you can choose from their substantial list, you can also BYO - for nada.
296-300 Victoria St, Darlinghurst
Bringing a bottle of your own booze makes waiting in line for the best roti in town that little bit easier.
15 Goulburn St, Haymarket
Two thumbs up to Chaco Bar: the best ramen in town also comes with a BYO option.
238 Crown St, Darlinghurst
Peking duck and pancakes at Golden Century. Photo: Steven Siewert
How many of us can honestly say we've not stopped here after a big night out for a plate of crispy shallot pancakes and a serving of pippies in delicate XO sauce? And while late night feasting at GC might be a Sydney rite of passage, try the more civilised route and eat at, well, dinner time.
393-399 Sussex St, Sydney
You know the food here must be the real deal when you spy the cricket bats - presents from visiting Indian cricketers such as Sachin Tendulkar - lining the walls. And it is. The jhinga malabari is one of the best curries we've ever eaten.
215 Parramatta Rd, Annandale
The best Middle Eastern BYOs
If you haven't had the cabbage rolls at Fatima's, have you really lived? Go for the $35 super banquet, stay for the free BYO.
296 Cleveland St, Surry Hills
Fish kebab, village fatouche, spicy homous, fried potato & coriander and bread at Emma's Snack Bar. Photo: Christopher Pearce
Emma's Snack Bar
This is the relaxed neighbourhood restaurant we all deserve: reliably delicious, affordable food that you can pair with a bottle of your own wine. That, my friends, is Tuesday night sorted. Like, for the rest of the year.
59 Liberty St, Enmore
The best of the rest BYOs
The Bach Eatery
On Tuesday and Sunday nights (as well as Sunday lunch), you can BYO to this charming Kiwi-influenced restaurant.
399 King St, Newtown
The Burger Shed Photo: Fiona Morris
The Burger Shed
At Justin North's latest offering, the burgers are fresh and hot, the fries are doused in shaved parmesan and truffle oil, and the wine is BYO.
914 Military Rd, Mosman
Better known as a cafe-by-day, this quietly vego joint (housed in an old industrial garage) serves up inventive homemade pasta by night, and allows BYO. Order the set menu ($55 per person) and your corkage is free.
Corkage: $4/person (free if you choose the set menu)
122 Chapel St, Marrickville
The best special occasion BYOs
Confit ocean trout at Tetsuya's Photo: Jon Reid
Yes, you can bring your own at Tetsuya's - but it'll cost you. If you've got a (very, very) special bottle hanging around, Tet's might be the place to crack it.
Corkage: $30 for the first bottle, $45 for subsequent bottles
529 Kent St, Sydney
One Penny Red
This isn't a BYO free-for-all, but on the last Tuesday of each month, the restaurant hosts a Raid Your Cellar night. Bring that fancy drop you've been saving and the chef will match a four-course menu.
Corkage: $75 per person for food, no corkage
2 Moonbie St, Summer Hill
Sean's Panorama at North Bondi. Photo: Supplied
A Bondi institution, this place serves up rustic yet modern dishes overlooking one of the world's best views.
270 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach
Hatted restaurant Otto's more casual sibling, the Larder, serves up the same wharfside views and stellar food from the same kitchen, but with a more relaxed vibe and BYO policy.
Corkage: $8/per person
8/6 Cowper Wharf Rd, Woolloomooloo
Fix St James
This gem of a joint dishes up consistently awesome food - from a simple roasted bone marrow to a $110 t-bone your meatiest dreams are made of. And Monday to Friday, they're BYO.
111 Elizabeth St, Sydney
La Grande Bouffe
Tis the season to eat at La Grande Bouffe - we're talking rich, warming cassoulet and classic moules frites. And with BYO available Monday to Thursday, it's a weeknight winner.
758 Darling St, Rozelle