For lamb lovers, the meat is a cut above the rest. It can be roasted, smoked, slow-cooked or char-grilled, or turned into a delectable ragu or creamy curry. The possibilities are endless, and after taste-testing our way around the city, we can safely say that our chefs are up to the challenge. Whether you like your lamb on the traditional side, or cooked a little differently, there’s a plate that’s waiting for you.
Matt Moran is known for his farm-to-table philosophy, and at Chiswick, every dish is as fresh as the next. The lamb comes straight from Moran’s family farm in the Central Tablelands. It’s slow-cooked until it falls off the bone, and is served with zucchini, mint and lemon (Woollahra) or capsicum, couscous and baby gem (Art Gallery of NSW).
Woollahra and The Domain, Sydney
For a slice of Greece in the Sydney CBD, there’s Alpha, where the food is as authentic as your yiayia’s. After you’ve settled in with a wine (or ouzo), tuck into the lamb spare ribs. Slow-roasted to perfection, they’re dished up with a drizzle of pea puree, and a side of kegalotyri (a salty white cheese) and mint salad.
238 Castlereagh Street, Sydney
With a neon-pink entrance and a creative menu courtesy of Dan Hong, Ms G’s is the place for Asian fusion. Here, the lamb shoulder is a Peking-style party for your tastebuds. Braised overnight, it’s marinated in fermented tofu, seasoned with fennel and cumin salt, and served with pancakes, pickled cucumber, chilli hoison and seaweed salsa verde. How’s that for different?
155 Victoria Street, Potts Point
To feast on Greek delights, go to The Apollo, and leave the rest to chef Jonathan Barthelmess. The lamb shoulder is slow-cooked in the oven for 10 hours with garlic, peppercorns, lemon and thyme, and it’s served simply, with lemon and Greek yoghurt. Complete your meal with an order of saganaki on the side. Drenched in honey and oregano, it’s out-of-this-world good.
44 Macleay Street, Potts Point
When Malaysian comfort food is calling, make a beeline for Mamak. Inspired by street food, every dish is bursting with bold flavours. The kari kambing (lamb curry) is slow-cooked and a little spicy, and has been on the menu since the restaurant opened a decade ago. While you’re waiting for your main, treat yourself to satay or roti, Mamak’s signature dishes.
Haymarket and Chatswood
Run by three Italian brothers, Fratelli Paradiso is the real deal. Come dinnertime, drop in for a chat with the charismatic owners – who are usually front-of-house – and a plate of handmade pasta. The busiate (a spiral pasta) is topped with a hearty lamb ragu that’ll satisfy you while making you wish you had room for seconds.
12-16 Challis Avenue, Potts Point
Over in Chippendale, Luke Powell’s pride and joy is his smoker, shipped from Texas to give every cut of meat a crusty finish and smoky, rich flavour. While the menu features everything from steak to short ribs, the whole rolled lamb is a standout. Smoked for six hours and stuffed with spiced merguez sausage, it’s a recipe for a heavenly food coma.
Suite 1, 12-16 Chippen Street, Chippendale
Make your Sunday a fun-day with a roast at Woolwich Pier, a gastropub with views of the harbour. Grab a seat on the sunny terrace, and dig into the Riverine saddle of lamb, which comes with roast veggies, pumpkin mash, yorkies, mint jelly and lashings of gravy. Try to get there close to midday, as the roast usually sells out.
2 Gale Street, Woolwich
Top tip: If you’re in the east, The Tilbury in Woolloomooloo also puts on a legendary roast. On the first Sunday of the month, it’s lamb.
For an honest-to-goodness feast, head to Three Blue Ducks, where most of the produce is plucked straight from their gardens or farm in Byron Bay. At the Bronte location, the chefs whip up a roast lamb rump with charred herb salsa, pumpkin and carrots. On the weekends, the Rosebery restaurant does a BBQ spit roast that’s unbelievably good.
Bronte, Rosebery, Byron Bay