Follow your tastebuds through The Rocks Markets
Taking in the splendour of Vivid Sydney is exercise for the body, not just the mind. With so many illuminations and installations to experience, sustenance is a must.
The best explorations start at The Rocks Night Markets where you can pre-fuel on Turkish gozleme, delectable skewers, fat German sausage or made-to-order ramen. Alternately, finish your sensory journey in The Rocks and reward yourself with mini cupcakes, delectable gelato or hand-made chocolates.
Throughout Vivid Sydney, the Rocks Night Markets operate on Friday and Saturday nights (and on Sunday 11 June) from 6pm until 10.30pm. The area also hosts buskers and music acts, extra outdoor seating, a chill-out area in Foundation Park, plus the famous art and craft stalls featuring a fascinating array of artisanal products.
Food options at the Night Markets vary from night to night, but here are some tasty highlights.
Choose from garlic-infused prawns, marinated octopus, juicy kangaroo, lamb, Portuguese chicken, beef, Haloumi and vegetable skewers. Savour the aromas as Ron Danieli cooks your selection before your eyes, in a choice of two sizes and served with house-made sauces.
Fast and fresh
There’s something very authentic about watching the pasta you’re about to eat being made before your eyes. The Fratelli Fresh Pasta Bar makes theatre of this time-honoured custom, before cooking it to order and serving it to the customer’s liking – al dente every time, of course.
Get some pork
An iconic restaurant of The Rocks is Phillip’s Foote, and a feature of the Night Markets is their signature dish – succulent pork with crackling served on a roll. Or try the carved pork, tossed on the barbecue plate and accompanied by fresh salad or roasted vegetables.
Warm up with ramen
Vivid heralds the onset of winter so a steaming bowl of ramen from Sake Jr is just the ticket to keep your inner glow well stoked. Using hand-made noodles from local suppliers and sustainably sourced ingredients including free-range chicken, these neo-Tokyo bowls of goodness are healthy and filling.
Bringing back the bratwurst
The team from the Munich Brauhaus bring their house-made pretzels, pickles and freshly grilled German bratwurst to the Night Markets to offer a touch of authentic Bavarian cuisine.
A slice of The Rocks
Pizza restaurant Caminetto occupies one of The Rocks’ most iconic buildings, nestled under the rocky outcrop that lends the area its name. It can whip up small (tasting) or full-size pizzas from an ever-changing menu including authentically Italian favourites such as That’s Amore, Love Me Tender and Sophia Loren.
One thing most visitors to The Rocks agree upon is that you shouldn’t miss a Dare gozleme. Their stuffed Turkish flatbreads are handmade and cooked to order with savoury fillings including Moroccan lamb, chicken and beef, while for those with a sweet tooth, it’s hard to go past the Nutella and banana gozleme.
When Sheryl Fong created a cupcake that resembled a haystack reminiscent of those featuring is a series of paintings by French impressionist Claude Monet, the Mini Monet Cupcake was born. They’re made in 12 flavours and are dainty enough that you’ll want to try more than one.
A sweet finish
When all you need is that last sweet morsel of flavour to cap off a truly sensory expedition, turn to Emporium of Chocolate. Each handmade item is brightly wrapped and inspired by the flavours of traditional Brazilian desserts.
The Rocks Night Markets
Fri–Sat, 26 May to 17 June
Sun 11 Jun
6pm to 10.30pm