Martin Place = Magic Place: the new foodie hub?

Martin Place = Magic Place: the new foodie hub?

Gastronomy's newest address

Site: Yeong Sassall

Martin Place has a special place in most Sydneysider's hearts, says Barrio Chino's Peter Lew

In good times and bad, it's the public space where our city's residents gather to celebrate or commemorate. But besides the food court in the MLC Centre and the restaurants in the GPO Building, dining options have been fairly limited in the area. Thankfully, this is all set to change with the opening of some exciting new venues this year.

1821 is a restaurant inspired by the Greek revolution, and it opens in July (replacing the Vault Hotel). David Tsirekas is the chef behind the venue - his old restaurant Perama used to be a family favourite of ours. I'm definitely optimistic his signature slow-braised lamb shoulder and charcoal-grilled lamb souvlaki will be making the cut on the 1821 menu.

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Bondi stalwart Maurice Terzini and his business partner Orazio D'elia are also looking at opening a CBD version of their successful restaurant Da Orazio Pizza & Porchetta around Martin Place. Already popular with families, foodies and fashionistas, the new offshoot will target the army of office workers in the area. Personally, I'm still hoping my son's favourite Mickey Mouse pizza makes the trip from Bondi!

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Lastly, my partner Nicole and I are opening Barrio Cellar, a tequila and taco bar located in the space made known by Wine Banc, a bar-restaurant Rodney Adler opened in 1998. Inspired by a recent trip we made to the States/Mexico with our executive chef, Kieran Cronin, we'll be serving our take on LA/Tijuana street food, as well as stocking over 200 tequilas and mezcals. In a town that is devoid of late night dining options (Golden Century aside), we'll be open until 3am each night.

I'm confident Martin Place will soon have a special place in Sydneysider's stomachs.

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