Nonna’s veal and pork meatballs served by grumpy Italians, wasabi salt Japanese fries, smoky charred chicken, spicy XO eggplant burgers and hot stone-served wagyu. These are just some of the eclectic and delicious offers landing at Sydney’s newest dining precinct on Smidmore St, part of Marrickville Metro’s $140 million re-development.
The Inner West has cemented itself as one of the greatest foodie pockets of Sydney and is known for its diverse and innovative approach to hospitality and a spirted art and culture scene. Venues such as Bella Brutta, Continental Deli, Sixpenny and Hartsyard are institutions and for good reason.
From 10 June, more than a dozen restaurateurs will come together to bring a mix of family-run businesses and nationally recognised concepts to the close-knit Inner West community and its vibrant and inclusive hub known as Marrickville Metro.
The residents taking over Smidmore St are here to celebrate the unique blueprint that makes Marrickville, unmistakably Marrickville. Concepts have been created, adjusted and re-imagined all to embrace and enhance the unique Inner West culture.
With affordable dining options suitable for all appetites and occasions, delivered in a combination of indoor and open-air dining spaces, it’s about time to introduce the new kids on the block.
Are you ready to meet some of the new locals joining Smidmore St?
NEW LOCAL ALERT #1: Jacqueline Tran and Cecilia Wang from The Rice Pantry
An Inner West favourite since 2017 when it landed at Precinct 75 in St Peters, The Rice Pantry celebrates the notion that everything goes well with rice!
Expanding its menu beyond Vietnamese for its newest venture, The Rice Pantry’s venue on Smidmore St is set to become the grounds for a modern Asian diner and bar. With Head Chef Bryan Zhu (a favourite former MasterChef Australia contestant) on board, the team will showcase bold, delicious and distinctive flavours of Asian cuisine in a fun, creative and unexpected way.
NEW LOCAL ALERT #2: Meet Fernando Riggio (AKA THE GRUMPY ITALIAN)
Fernando grew up in a family of four boys; yelling was commonplace and necessary to be heard among the noise. Even from a young age he was always mischievous and grumpy and with no idea what to do with him, his mother diverted his attention to cooking. Together they learnt to cook all their family recipes (with lots of yelling involved).
Fernando has been filling his customers hearts and stomachs with crazy stories, delicious food and plenty of Italian attitude at his venues in Chiswick and North Strathfield. He is excited to get to know the Inner West community more with the opening of his new restaurant on Smidmore St.
The Grumpy Italian will be serving up all the carb-filled deliciousness we love with traditional pasta, pizza and house-made desserts.
NEW LOCAL ALERT #3: Khal Fayed from KARL’S CHARCOAL CHICKEN (HINT: same team behind Hawa Charcoal Chicken)
These guys are no rookies when it comes to mouth-watering charred chicken. Hawa Charcoal Chicken has been serving Granville and now Seven Hills with barbeque chicken and their secret garlic sauce for 12 years.
Rounding up the best chicken shops across Sydney has been a hot debate for quite some time and Karl’s is ready to introduce Inner West locals to the smell of their crispy chicken goodness and Shish Plates.
Karl’s will be known as Hawa’s younger sibling and while all siblings share similar DNA – each have their own personality and quirks. At Karl’s guests will be encouraged to take a seat and stay for a while. Karl’s will be a go-to for a fun and casual day or night out, underpinned by some serious food and drinks. Think loaded up meats (or falafel, cauliflower, eggplant for a vege option) mixed in with generous amounts of hummus, tabouli, baba ghanoush, garlic, pickles and bread.
NEW LOCAL ALERT #4: Meet Jorge from RAMAN
A new concept developed especially for Smidmore St, Raman will take traditional Middle Eastern cuisine and inject a modern flair to their all-day dining menus.
A deliciously diverse Mediterranean/Middle Eastern brunch menu will feature unlimited dips, salads and mixed meat skewers with the choice of flowing Arabic wines or sparkling wines. The famous Arabic drink arak (ouzo) will also be on offer.
Leading into the evening, Raman’s menu is designed to be shared and will be perfect for large special occasions and group bookings. The fruity and colourful cocktail selections and extensive wine list perfectly complement the bold and vibrant flavours found in the food menu. There’s no sense of feeling rushed when you are taken care of by Jorge and his team. On Friday and Saturday evenings, diners will be treated with entertainment from traditional belly dancers.
NEW LOCAL ALERT #5: Meet Jay from FIRESTONE
Firestone, known for their premium wagyu steaks served on heated hot stone,will be treating Marrickville locals with all-day dining in a colourful and casual atmosphere.
Eggs are 100% free range and are delivered daily from the River Gum Egg Farm in Glen Innes. You won’t find waffles and maple syrup on this menu – instead a house-made waffle stacked with buttermilk fried chicken, kimchi, avocado, maple aioli and furikake. I’ll take two!
For dinner, a selection of 100% Australian-farmed wagyu beef rump steak, tenderloins or rib-eye are served on simmering hot stone with vegetables and hot crispy chips. For guests wanting to warm up over winter, Firestone will bring the heat with their fiery menu and mulled wine pairings.
NEW LOCAL ALERT #6: MOTTO MOTTO JAPANESE KITCHEN
From the team behind one of Australia’s most awarded Japanese restaurants, Sono in QLD, Motto Motto Japanese Kitchen brings premium casual Japanese fare to their third home in NSW on Smidmore Street, Marrickville Metro.
Featuring a mix of traditional and modern Japanese dishes, Motto Motto is unique in blending innovation and tradition together to bring fine dining ingredients and quality to the world of fast, casual dining. Foodies will be thrilled with crowd-favourites making their way onto the menu including rich Japanese curries, fresh poke bowls and famous ramen super broth.
NEW LOCAL ALERT #7: Dennis Yuho Oh from IZAKAYA TORI
Marrickville locals are in for a treat as Izakaya Tori hits the suburbs for the first-time. The team are passionate about providing their guests with a rich and authentic Japanese yakitori experience with a friendly and inviting service.
Izakaya Tori may be going local, but they are dedicated in maintaining their high-quality international standards to create a new experience that is bursting with flavour and excitement.
More deliciousness/retailer announcements to follow. Stay tuned!