Serving up water views and delicious French eats, we recommend booking ahead because The Sydney Collective’s newest addition, Whalebridge, has just opened its doors. With some of the best chefs in Sydney at the helm and a stunning location that sets the backdrop for an afternoon of good vibes, we know where you’ll be booking that next fancy dinner or lunch.
Location: 8 & 10 East, NSW 2000
Hours: Mon-Thurs 12–3pm, 5–9pm, Fri-Sun 12–9:30pm
Phone: (02) 9000 7709
Let’s get the elephant in the room out of the way early. Those familiar with the name/ restaurant Sydney Cove Oyster Bar will recognise the location after the powers at be decided to give the previous vendor (who now resides on Cable Beach) an unceremonious boot after three decades. Hospitality entrepreneur Fraser Short and chef Sean Connolly (now departed from the venture) purchased the site soon after and vowed to “be respectful of the area,” and the results speak for themselves – it’s stunning.
Directed by Executive Chef Will Elliott, formerly of Melbourne’s Cumulus Inc., ST JOHN, London, and most recently Restaurant Hubert in Sydney, Whalebridge boasts a deliciously French-inspired menu. Expect to find French takes on fresh local seafood, including bouillabaisse de Marseille and lobster thermidor. Mains like stuffed zucchini, duck confit and steak or mussel frittes will have you salivating from the moment you walk in.
“What’s exciting about Whalebridge is the opportunity to prepare and plate a menu that is entirely new to Sydney. These are produce-driven dishes rooted in traditional French technique and the articulation of those flavours,” said Whalebridge Executive Chef, Will Elliott.
The delectable menu is, of course, accompanied by an extensive wine list of 150 renowned French and Australian wines. Favourites include wines from the Cote du Rhone and Provence regions alongside McLaren Vale and Mornington Peninsula, taking patrons from old-world to new.
If you’re more fussed about what to wear, the restaurant encapsulates a more playful approach to traditional French dinging, with a relaxed, coastal feel capturing the restaurant’s ambience. This aligns with the unpretentious, simple ethos Elliott hopes to achieve through his approach to dining.
“I love good produce treated simply, that’s why I love French cooking. It has very humble origins, but it’s been refined over so many years to bring out the best in something, without masking what made it good in the first place,” he said.
With a perfect playful Parasian touch married with a tranquil harbour location shadowed by the Sydney Harbour Bridge, you’re truly met with the best of both worlds at this Sydney restaurant, guaranteeing a dining experience like none other.
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