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Published November 30th 2017
The Best Things in Life Happen at Christmas
Christmas lunch without the kitchen duty (by jill111 / CC0)
Christmas lunch is a joyous highlight of the year but stress in the humble home kitchen can distract from festivities. Relax in the lead-up to this annual family get-together with lunch in a classy restaurant, serving a Christmas-themed menu with all the trimmings.
Celebrate your best Christmas lunch with friends and family at one of these top 5 restaurants in Sydney.
360 Bar and Dining - Sydney Westfield Centre, Pitt St & Castlereagh St; (02) 8223 3883
Sydney Tower has a self-serve buffet, but for a special occasion with a spectacular Sydney view, the 360 is the best choice. As a bonus, your ticket includes access to the observation deck, to scan the skies for Santa's reindeer or breath fresh air above the barbecue smoke of backyard parties.
Prepare your palate with the amuse bouche of pea and ham soup, continuing with entrees of Pacific oysters, chorizo, buffalo mozzarella and marinated olives for the table to share.
For mains, choose from the quartet of grilled kingfish with mussels, kurobuto pork with roasted peach, turkey with cranberry and pistachio stuffing, or chickpea panisse with asparagus and smoked yogurt.
For dessert, tuck into Christmas pudding with fig ice cream, white chocolate cheesecake with mango, chocolate mousse, or basil panna cotta.
Take a last look over the city as you finish with petit fours of fruit pate, earl grey cookies, chocolate truffles and salted caramel macaroons.
360 Bar and Dining's Christmas menu is $185 for adults, $49 for children.
Surrounded by some of the most beautiful and rare plants in the world, from African red trumpet flowers to Southeast Asian rose apples, you'll be enjoying lunch in a natural oasis, escaping the city while remaining in its heart. As a bonus, enjoy one of the most idyllic Christmas walks in Sydney to ease the guilt from dessert, burning a few calories in the trails of the Royal Botanic Gardens on the way home.
The menu is inspired by the floral theme, beginning with 5 choices for entrée - crispy hen's egg with mushroom, sautéed calamari & coriander foam with chorizo, cured smoked trout with radishes and beets, Gippsland beef tartare, and grilled smoked chicken thigh salad apricot and almonds.
Of the six choices for main course, highlights are the roast lamb with minted peas, rosemary and salsa, and the pan seared mulloway with gremolata potato, spinach and lemon beurré blanc.
The five desserts are infused with the sweet enchantment of the gardens, with options of "Pollination", a honey pecan cheesecake, chocolate fondant with vanilla bean ice-cream, and almond panna cotta with cherries and kiwifruit.
The 'glass' is the go-to restaurant for many locals when they introduce foreign friends to Sydney's dining scene. The decor and atmosphere, with high ceilings and compelling artwork, set an elegant tone, preparing diners for the flavours created in Luke Mangan's kitchen. Christmas lunch in 'glass' follows the recent Aussie summer preference of seafood over the traditional roast.
In the 3-course set menu, begin with the refreshing kingfish with orange and sesame and continue with glazed ham and prawns, complimented by avocado and avruga caviar.
Take a breather before toasting the main course, choosing from salmon Wellington with silverbeet or duck breast with broccolini.
Ignore the phone call from your personal trainer and savour every bite of the Black Forest trifle, a sweet treat with cherries, chocolate sponge and vanilla cream.
glass brasserie's Christmas menu is $190 for adults.
Summer Salt - 66 Mitchell Rd, Cronulla; (02) 9523 2366
Residents of the Shire often gush about living in 'God's country' but with Summer Salt, they may deserve the bragging rights. Beside the white strip of Cronulla Beach, with fresh sea air and grand views of the Pacific Ocean, you'll be served a premiere mix of contemporary Australian cuisine, with flair from Asian influences and prepared with local produce.
The usual set menu is anything but ordinary, with entrees of tiger prawns and date labneh, crispy skin pork with radicchio and grilled peach, chilli salted squid with lychee salad, and a spinach and ricotta risotto with crispy zucchini.
The generous servings for main course include 250g char grilled eye fillet, pan fried barramundi, battered flathead with grilled pineapple, and tomato and mozzarella rotolo.
The desserts are a trio of summer classics - chocolate fondant with banoffee icecream, coconut parfait with pineapple, and pavlova with lime, berries and kiwifruit.
Summer Salt's Christmas menu is $165 for adults, with a 2-course option for children at $45.
Visit the Summer Salt website for details, or call (02) 9523 2366 to book.
An opulent aesthetic is matched by the flare of the chef, guided by the QT Group's Creative Food Director, Robert Marchetti. Take time to open your Christmas presents and tell tall seasonal tales as the kitchen and wait staff relieve the stress of serving the perfect Christmas lunch.
If you're early, head for the bar, skipping the egg nog to stir an espresso martini.
Once you're seated, you'll sip from a flûte of champagne with hors d'oeuvres of foie gras & truffle puffs, and oysters with lemon mayonnaise.
For entree, select from a seafood platter with ocean trout, caviar and prawns, flavoured with wasabi and sides of spinach, garlic and mint.
For mains, the choices are worthy of a Christmas feast, with wood roasted suckling pig sauced with 30-year-old balsamic butter, free range turkey with black truffle gravy, and salt bush spinach pasta with buffalo ricotta.
Refresh with the house made limoncello liquor or a non-alcoholic eggnog before finishing with Christmas pudding and vanilla custard, or dip into the fresh cherries, and coffee and pane forte.