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Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
Meals
Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, After-hours
CUISINES
Australian
FEATURES
Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts Credit Cards, Table Service, Live Music
Reviews (4 283)
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Traveller rating
2 411
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83
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Reviewed yesterday via mobile

Sad to see an “icon” / great Sydney restaurant gone. Booked for a birthday dinner months ahead for family visiting from overseas. We were placed next to the toilets! The once great restaurant feels and looks like a canteen with a view filled with tours...and groups that for some reason get the best tables. It is overcrowded with tables and no more table cloths but waiters with earphones communicating with each other rather than focus on the guests. The once excellent cuisine has become very average - clearly the kitchen does not cope with the amount of people coming through. Someone has bought this place to make money - not to give the great Sydney dining experience that it used to be. Very sad - don’t waist your money !!More

Date of visit: May 2024
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Reviewed yesterday

Booked well in advance. Received worst table . The staff have the sleep sorted though advising you have to book not one month in advance but at least 3 to ensure a good table! Food was served cold. Kingfish entree served thickly cut not finely...sliced and tasteless. We were there in a Friday night and the place turned into what only could be surprised as a nightclub. Music very loud. Despite slow service we were told with 15 minutes spare we had to vacate the table and they could serve us in the bar! Another bad table near the toilet was given to us. I was given a substantial gift voucher for a meal here in another Occassion and sadly I do t think I’ll use it! Such a shame prior to this I have used this restaurant for business purposes.More

Date of visit: May 2024
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

The view is epic and the service is great but I have been visiting this restaurant for over 7 years and the food has progressively got more bland. It’s not bad just not as good as it used to be. Would try and book in...advance and if weather is good, get a table outdoors on balcony/terrace.More

Date of visit: May 2024
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Good spot and beautiful view and outlook. The food is good but vegetarian options limited. Could be better for that. More options please

Date of visit: May 2024
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Lucky enough to get a last minute booking during our trip from the UK and were fortunate enough to get a table at the front of the terrace with stunning views towards the Harbour Bridge. The food was amazing and service fantastic. Highly recommend.

Date of visit: April 2024
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Great views of the harbour! Decent menu, food was good. Not cheap, but we didn't expect it to be. Service was fine. Very hopping!

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed 5 April 2024

The weather could not spoil this amazing restaurant - the staff were 100% attentive, the food was to perfection, entrees my friend loved the double baked goats cheese we all had the NZ snapper for a main and finally a beautiful dessert to finish it...off. Would definitely go back again.More

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed 30 March 2024

I came for my daughter's 21'st birthday. Pre-ordered a cake and I was so pleased that they catered for all. Thank you so much for having a Vegan menu! It was so nice to have so many options. The food & cake were delicious!!

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed 29 March 2024

When you are fine dining it’s the small things which make it so and last night Cafe Sydney did not deliver. The standard at which it used to operate has absolutely dropped. If it wasn’t for the Irish waitress, I would have given it a...lower score. I booked the table quite some time ago as my family were visiting from overseas and wanted a special occasion. When we first arrived the table wasn’t ready yet, which wasn’t an issue and we sat at the bar for a short period. Once we were seated, we placed our order the waiter who took the food order. It would have been nice to see the sommelier to help us choose a nice bottle of wine to accompany dinner but they didn’t seem to have them. We then ordered dinner and again it would have been nice as per previous visits of the waiter had given us some advice on sides to accompany the dishes which he didn’t. Once the food started to arrive, it seemed like the waiters didn’t know which dish belonged to who. It was quite chaotic. The manager then came over and asked if we would like to switch tables as we were under the aircon unit. He said he would shift everything across if we just brought out drinks which we did quite happily. However, they forgot the napkins and we didn’t receive these until after our mains arrived. We then waited quite a considerable period for our mains, well over 30 minutes from our starters. Once the main dishes arrived, the same issue of who ordered what happened, now I understand we had moved but none of the waiters seemed to know which piece of meat had been cooked to what, this meant I ended up with a medium cooked steak when I asked for rare. I had to send my dish back. Once it finally came back it was cooked blue not rare at which point I couldn’t be bothered to send it back again. The side dishes we had ordered to accompany the mains were also cold by that point as well. So I had to make do with a pretty cold dinner. Finally, when they came round to take coffee orders they forgot my coffee. All my family received their coffee but mine was missed off. At which point I just gave up. As I said it’s the smaller things which really make the difference especially at Cafe Sydney pricing. I hope they bring their standards back up as I won’t be visiting anytime soon.More

Date of visit: February 2024
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Reviewed 28 March 2024 via mobile

Booked my table 3 weeks in advance when there was plenty of availability inside and outside. Called 2 days before to make sure we had a nice table as this is what you go to cafe Sydney for the view and the setting, We were...given the worst table in the restaurant and told setting was allocated on time of booking (absolute rubbish because on the time of booking there were plenty of availability at this restaurant)………….the restaurant is pricey over $500 for 3 people and the food is average……..ive eaten in a lot nicer restaurants in Sydney your paying for the view but if you don’t get one DEFINITELY DONT BOTHERMore

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed 26 March 2024 via mobile

If we had not stayed at a place with magnificent view of Sydney harbor I may have given this restaurant a 4. It certainly has a great view of the iconic Sydney Harbor and nice upscale vibe. However, it was quite pricy and the level...of service was poor. . Our table was not ready when we arrived on time. The food is very good but it should be for the price point and the level of service should match the price. I will say that the salted caramel martinis had for dessert was one the best I have had but then the inordinate amount of time it took to get our bill after dessert kinda took the luster off the drink.More

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed 9 March 2024

What an amazing location. Great cocktails attentive staff and delicious food. Will definitely eat here again when back in Sydney.

Date of visit: February 2024
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Reviewed 5 March 2024 via mobile

It was a lovely lunch and although we chose to sit away from the window/terrace as such a hot day it was still a nice view. Food was delicious. Service also good although felt a little disingenuous sometimes, friendly but a little ‘here we go...again another customer’ feel. May be a little harsh as they were helpful etc just gave that vibe. The only reason I have given a 4 not a 5 (4.5 if I could) is the bar area and dark furniture and colours felt quite dated in the daytime. I can tell at night it could look lovely with the lighting but it was a bit lack lustre in daylight. Feel it needs elevation as felt a bit 90’s, to then give the same elegant feel for lunch. However the terrace did look lovely.More

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed 3 March 2024

What a superb experience this was. It doesn't market itself very aggressively at all - you have to look for it. It's in the perfect location. When you imagine your view of Sydney harbour well, this is it! From the bustle of Circular Quay, ascend...in a lift from Customs house entrance, and you emerge into luxury surroundings which are modern and gleaming. Step out on to the balcony for the view and then - excellent food and wine with service to match (your reviewer does not often say that). Let this be a measure of how we enjoyed it. Ate here late February, and while at the table booked for our last night in Australia in the middle of April.More

Date of visit: February 2024
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Reviewed 29 February 2024

Basically, you should expect to be served your meal as the Chef likes it. I asked for my main entre to be cooked medium; it was not medium based on my opinion and taste. I sent my meal back for more heat, and what came...back was a new entre undercooked, the same as the first. I complained and was told this is how the Chef servers it. I was offered to try a third time or have a different meal served. but at this point, my seven friends at the table were finished with their meals and I declined the offer to try again. The charge for the dinner was removed and I left the restaurant hungry. I understand the cultural differences in cooking food and how it is served; however, as a paying customer, I don't understand why I can't get the meal cooked with a little more heat; I am the one that is going to consume the food. My rating is I am submitting is 2 out of 5 because the seven other people at the table seemed to enjoy their food. For me alone, I would submit a rating of 1 out of 5, Just trying to write a fair and acurate review of my experience.More

Date of visit: February 2024
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Questions & Answers
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Nickkicole
10 May 2019|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from Lorna F | Reviewed this property |
Yes absolutely
0
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aitchcoop
22 April 2019|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from Jennifer R | Reviewed this property |
No but I suspect no thongs or singlet tops
1
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ruthie385
15 April 2019|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from grame_13 | Reviewed this property |
I know the Opera House sells out for NYE @ $1,000 pp. I wouldn’t wait to book Cafe Sydney for NYE. The view is amazing. Good luck!
1
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Cafe Sydney - 5th Floor Customs House 31 Alfred St, Central Business District - Menu & Prices - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Cafe Sydney

Yes, Cafe Sydney is taking precautions against COVID-19. A full list is available within the "safety precautions" section of this page.

Cafe Sydney is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travellers:
  • Food: 4.5
  • Service: 4.5
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4.5