Guillaume at Bennelong (Sydney, NSW; tel. 02/9241 1999)
With amazing views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, great food, and a position inside the Sydney Opera House, how could dinner at Guillaume go wrong?
Quay (Sydney, NSW; tel. 02/9251 5600)
Sydney's best seafood restaurant offers perhaps the loveliest view in town. Gaze through the large windows toward the Opera House, the city skyline, the North Shore suburbs, and the Harbour Bridge.
Tetsuya's (Sydney, NSW; tel. 02/9267 2900)
Chef Tetsuya Wakuda is arguably Sydney's most famous chef, and his nouveau Japanese creations are imaginative enough to guarantee that this hip eatery is a constant number one in Australia. In 2007, the restaurant ranked no. 5 in the world.
Icebergs Dining Room and Bar (Sydney, NSW; tel. 02/9365 9000)
Come here for exquisite food and one of the best ocean views in the Southern Hemisphere. Not surprisingly, seafood features highly on the menu. Probably the best place to have lunch in Sydney.
e'cco bistro (Brisbane, QLD; tel. 07/3831 8344)
Simple food elegantly done has won this small but stylish bistro a stack of awards, and you'll see why. Not least among its titles is Australia's top restaurant award, the Remy Martin Cognac/Gourmet Traveller Restaurant of the Year. Booking ahead is essential.
Star Anise (Subiaco, Perth, WA; tel. 08/9381 9811)
This small restaurant tucked away on a leafy suburban street serves up tasty, innovative, Asian-influenced food. The menu is kept simple, with just five courses in each section, but each dish is a gem.
Voyager Estate (Margaret River, WA; tel. 08/9757 6354)
Everything about this winery and restaurant reeks of class. Superb Cape Dutch architecture, impeccable gardens, and imaginative cuisine make this a top dining spot. Recommended wines available by the glass.
Prairie Hotel (Flinders Ranges, SA; tel. 08/8648 4844)
While you may be tempted to dismiss the hotel's signature dish, a "feral mixed grill" (camel sausage, goat chop, kangaroo filet, and wallaby kabob on mashed potatoes with gravy), as a tourist gimmick, the Prairie's food is definitely worth going out of your way for. Aside from a few other novelty dishes ('roo burger or wallaby stir-fry), the entrees are a blend of different tastes and textures combining native foods with more contemporary ingredients.
Flower Drum (Melbourne, VIC; tel. 03/9662 3655)
Praise pours in for this upscale eatery serving Cantonese food. The food is exquisite and the service impeccable.
Cicciolina (Melbourne, VIC; tel. 03/9534 8221)
A glass in hand while the sun goes down over St. Kilda beach, watched from the veranda at Donovans, is a perfect way to end the day. This 1920s bathing pavilion has been transformed into a welcoming beach-house-style restaurant, complete with views across the sand and a seafood-rich menu.
The Best Moderately Priced Restaurants
Phillip's Foote (Sydney, NSW; tel. 02/9241 1485)
In the heart of the historic neighborhood known as The Rocks, this barbecue restaurant serves fish, meat, and poultry. Pick your own protein and throw it on the "barbie" in the courtyard behind a historic pub.
Salsa Bar & Grill (Port Douglas, QLD; tel. 07/4099 4922)
The animated atmosphere and attractive surroundings set the scene for an excellent dining experience. Appetizers and main courses run the gamut from simple fare to sophisticated tropical creations; desserts are fantastic.
Spirit House (Sunshine Coast, QLD; tel. 07/5446 8994)
Winding jungle paths lead to tables set around a lagoon, illuminated at night by torches and discreet lighting. The flavors from the kitchen are mainly Thai but with other Asian influences; there's nowhere else quite like this in Queensland for atmosphere and terrific food.
Red Ochre Grill (Alice Springs, NT; tel. 08/8952 9614)
"Gourmet bush tucker" might sound like a contradiction, but this restaurant (part of an upscale chain) pulls it off. The kitchen combines native ingredients and international techniques to exceptionally good effect.
Romany Restaurant (Northbridge, Perth, WA; tel. 08/9328 8042)
A full house on a Tuesday night speaks volumes. Good hearty Italian meals are served quickly, in a companionable atmosphere. Food and wine prices are eminently reasonable.
Star of Greece Café (Port Willunga, SA; tel. 08/8557 7420)
Don't let appearances fool you. This little 1950s kiosk perched high on the cliff top overlooking the coastline of Port Willunga, around an hour's drive from Adelaide, serves up some of the best seafood you'll find in the country. And the views are pretty spectacular, too.
MoVida (Melbourne, VIC; tel. 03/9663 3038)
This little corner of Spain is relaxed and fun, with seriously good food and good wine. Melbournians flock here for the tapas and raciones. If it's full, try one of the two sister restaurants, MoVida Next Door and MoVida Aqui.
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Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.