New to Canberra, I love exploring this city and the secrets that it holds with my family.
Published September 25th 2017
From breakfast to dinner at Jamie Olivers
The Canberra Centre is the main shopping centre that runs through the city centre, with over 260 specialty shops located over two levels and three blocks in the city. It also has over 50 eateries to choose from - yes, 50! This includes restaurants, cafes, coffee outlets and takeaway options in two busy food courts. Friday night is a popular time to hit the shops and have a bite to eat, with late night shopping until 9pm and most restaurants open until 11pm. At one end of the Canberra Centre, below Dendy Cinemas, is the North Quarterdining precinct, with some of the most popular restaurants in the city.
The following are 10 delicious options for breakfast, lunch and dinner in the Canberra Centre. Rest assured - if they look too busy, there are another 40 more to choose from.
Start the day right at Coffee Lab, outside the Canberra Centre on Narellan Place
BREAKFAST & COFFEE
1/ Coffee Lab is one of the most popular venues in the city to grab a takeaway coffee. It is found in a tucked away location - so much so that it is hard to believe that it is part of the Canberra Centre. Find your way to the North Quarter dining precinct (on the ground level below Dendy Cinema) and walk along Scotts Crossing and turn left. They also do a sweet range of cakes. See here for details and here for a full article.
2/ GreenHouse Coffee & Co is an easier café to find, located upstairs inside the Canberra Centre on Level 1, just a short walk from the Apple Store. This light and airy café has an outdoor verandah at the back, which opens up into a leafy terrace which looks down onto Bunda Street below. This café is a collaboration between two Canberra coffee houses - Ona coffee and Espresso Room, which are both popular with Canberra locals. See here for details and here for a full article.
3/ Dobinson's Bakery and Cafe is located outside the centre on Bunda Street, the main street that runs through the CBD. This is a long-standing favourite in the local community for breakfast with great prices, large servings and a cake display that will tempt you to stay for morning tea. The pies and sausage rolls are good too! See here for details and here for a full article.
4/ CBD Dumpling House can be found outside the Canberra Centre on Scotts Crossing, as part of the North Quarter dining precinct. Watch the skilled chefs making and creating the hand-made dumplings through the display windows. This restaurant is popular for both lunch and dinner, especially with local workers in their lunchbreak. See here for details.
5/ Hero Sushi Train is found inside the North Quarter dining precinct. This popular restaurant is also reasonably priced, with most plates on the sushi train just $3.50. Watch the chefs create the sushi rolls in the centre and sit back and enjoy a wide range of fresh sushi glide by - with plain ones for the kids and spicy sauces and intricate flavours for the adults. See here for details and here for a full article.
6/ Cream Cafe and Bar is also located at the North Quarter dining precinct, on the corner of Bunda Street and Genge Street. This Art Deco café has an extensive menu to cater for a wide range of tastes. Although this café becomes a bar later in the night, it is always full during lunchtime with people enjoying the sophisticated atmosphere and indoor tables out of the winter chill or summer heat. See here for details and here for a full article.
7/ Jamie's Italian is a busy restaurant for both lunch and dinner, located in the North Quarter dining precinct on Bunda Street. If you are visiting for dinner on a Friday or Saturday night, ensure you book online to get a table. It is busy early in the night with families and later in the evening it gets busy with couples and friends who enjoy Italian fare - made the Jamie Oliver way. With Dendy Cinema just a short walk away, it is a popular before-movie restaurant. See here for details and here for a full article.
8/ Sammy's Kitchen is a Chinese and Malaysian restaurant which is found in the North Quarter dining precinct, just a short walk up from Jamie's Italian. This restaurant is equally as popular as Jamie's as a before-movie restaurant, so it advised that you call ahead and book a table so you don't have to line up. This is the perfect place to get a quick, delicious dinner and it is one of Canberra's most consistently popular Asian restaurants. See here for details and here for a full article.
9/ PappaRich is a popular Malaysian restaurant chain that can be found in the North Quarter dining precinct, just next door to Hero Sushi Train. This restaurant has an interesting and quick system of ordering meals and it is delivered a short time later. If you have kids with you and they don't like Malaysian food, there are other choices on the kids menu. See here for details and here for a full article.
10/ Koko Black is a chocolate and dessert café that can be found on Bunda Street. This decadent café is everything that a chocoholic would want, with chocolates you can buy to take home as well as a cafe with share plates, authentic hot chocolates and mouth-watering desserts. It is the perfect way to end the night in the city and the Canberra Centre. See here for details.
The city of Canberra is fortunate to have such a wide range of eateries to choose from - from casual to fine dining and everything in between. As well as the Canberra Centre, there is also a whole street of restaurants and cafes along Lonsdale Street, just a few minutes walk from the North Quarter dining precinct and on the Kingston Foreshore, south of the city.
Why not go on a foodie crawl around Canberra's food districts this weekend? You definitely won't go home hungry.
Chocolate decadence at Koko Black. Image: Koko Black Facebook