New South Wales and Canberra restaurants worthy of a little (or large) detour.
Good news! The old Vulcans site lives again, thanks to some sensitive cooking from ex-Tetsuya's and Rockpool Bar and Grill chef, Will Cowan-Lunn. The bakery oven, from which the majority of the good vibes and menu are produced, still rules the room.
33 Govetts Leap Rd, Blackheath, 0472 793 326, atesblackheath.com
Ates in Blackheath. Photo: Supplied
This sunny Canberra newcomer has made a swift impression with its smart menu of share-plates spiked with native ingredients and '80s nostalgia (hello, burnt honey mousse surrounded by house-made cocoa pops, topped with lemon myrtle oil).
14 Lonsdale St, Braddon, 02 6189 0757, corellabar.com.au
Walk through the doors and the kitchen immediately catches the eye. Yep, that's a Mibrasa charcoal oven and those sights, sizzles and aromas are going to end up on your plate. Don't miss the unctuous smoky pork jowl.
9 Albert St, Wickham, Newcastle, 02 4965 3885, theflotilla.com.au
Blue mackerel, cucumber, rhubarb and miso soy custard at Flotilla, Newcastle. Photo: Supplied
The Argyle Inn
It might say "Inn" out front but you'll find few pub tropes inside. Fridays are a la carte, Saturday is a set menu and Sunday is a casual bakery-style offering, but the ethos remains the same: good ingredients, simple preparation, road trip-worthy results.
80 Orchard St, Taralga, 0448 402 008, theargyleinn.com.au
Gnocchi with kangaroo ragu served at the Argyle Inn in Taralga. Photo: Dominic Lorrimer
No. 35 Kitchen and Bar
Icebergs veterans Rachel Duffy and Daniel Medcalf deliver a pitch-perfect package to the Tweed with a menu that draws on Italian classics in a smart, unfussy and largely al fresco setting.
35 Tweed Coast Rd, Cabarita Beach, number35.com.au
Tiramisu at No. 35 Kitchen and Bar. Photo: Jess Kearney
The It Lists are brought to you by Citi
This article features in the Good Food Guide 2022 magazine, published on November 30 with presenting partners Citi and Vittoria Coffee, and free with The Sydney Morning Herald. Also on sale from December 7 in newsagents and supermarkets.