Sydney, Australia: Day One

After a delay at IAD due to mechanical issues, the Mister and I made our way to SFO where we were fortunate to make our connection but because there were delays with other passengers/flights, we had to wait for another hour before we started on our way on our 14+hour flight.

Traveling in a double decker!

Due to the fact that there was no wi-fi, I was forced to actually sleep and that helped me to adjust my body clock so that when we landed at 9am in SYD (after 22+ hours), I was wide awake and ready to go! After going through customs and making our way through the airport, we were on our way to the hotel.

I’ve been tweeting with the hotel from the time I booked my reservations in November so it was such a pleasant surprise to meet the person who had been responding to my tweets upon our arrival. Alex was kind enough to suggest a small café for us to get coffee and give us some local tips for New Year’s Eve.  Follow them on twitter at @diamanthotelsyd Diamant Hotel Sydney

View from the hotel room – perfect for NYE fireworks

After getting unpacking and getting freshened up, we headed out to get caffeine and to get our bearings. 3Group was a perfect spot for some healthy yoghurt, granola and dried fruit.

Walking around Kings Cross or “the Cross” reminded me of being in New Orleans. Well, it is the red light district so a lot of adult entertainment. The architecture also had beautiful iron grillwork so the houses looked a lot like the French Quarter in NOLA. We made our way past a delicious looking grocery store, Fratelli Fresh. Since I enjoy markets of all kind, we went inside to take a look see. The displays were beautiful and made the fruit and vegetables look so enticing. Before I was reprimanded for taking a photo, I was able to take this picture. Only later did I see the no camera sign on the front door. As a mental note, we decided to come back later for a meal as they also had a small restaurant inside and outside of the market.

Having walked around in the neighborhood, we decided to buy a multi day pass for the cityrail and scooted out to Martins Place to walk to SYD harbor. The mix of older buildings contrasting with modern skyscrapers was delightful. We decided to make a pit stop at the Four Seasons at GRAIN before heading to the harbor. The salt and vinegar sweet potatoes were a nice snack – crunchy, while also thoroughly cooked with a faint tanginess of the vinegar.

Now that we had some more sustenance, we made our way to the harbor and to the circular quay, where the ferries leave for other SYD destinations. Bustling with tourists from the cruise ships as well as commuters, the wharves are filled with food and souvenir vendors. We stopped underneath the SYD harbor bridge and I was enthralled with the engineering of what was underneath the bridge.

Don’t you like my water ride?

Walking back to the cityrail, I decided that I wanted oysters so we stopped at the Morrison to get ½ a dozen oysters and an order of duck fat fries. The oysters were local and tasted so fresh!

We headed back to the hotel and later ventured back out to Fratelli Fresh for dinner. After a small wait, we decided on the stuffed zucchini flowers with 5 cheeses for a shared appetizer and our entrees were the lamb ragu and ragu w Bolognese. Since they had the no photos policy, I couldn’t capture the dishes for posterity. The lamb ragu was delicious – people sometimes don’t like lamb because they feel that the smell/taste can be very strong but this dish was faint w no aftertaste. The Bolognese was hearty with the initial taste being the carrots and celery that start the base. Although made with meat, the vegetables were the 1st things that I could taste.

By the time we got back to the hotel, we were making our way past 10pm and with a 16 hour time difference to DC, we needed to get some sleep!

3 Group Espresso
199 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst

Fratelli Fresh
Assorted locations throughout SYD
We visited the outpost in Potts Point
81 Macleay Street
Potts Point

GRAIN at the Four Seasons
199 George Street
Sydney

The Morrison Bar & Oyster Room
225 George Street
Sydney

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