Let’s be honest: Hobart is no culinary capital. While Melbourne and Sydney compete over who can develop the most hip laneway eateries, Hobart plugs humbly on.
But in recent years, ears have pricked. Tongues have strayed. Tasmania is no longer just “the place the Sydney to Hobart finishes.” Instead, it’s now, well, not known for, but at least got some top notch restaurants for tourists and locals alike to feast their taste buds on.
Local heroes like Etties and Templo (not to mention The Source) have incited a revolution in Hobart’s food-scape, bringing satisfied stomachs and pleasantly-surprised-eyebrows to a dining scene that now commands
global your attention.
But how to taste them all? If you’re only in Hobart for a week, how do you taste upwards of 50 excellent eateries? You either clear your calendar and loosen your belt, or you read this list, where we have distilled your options into the coolest 12 restaurants Hobart has to offer.
Peacock & Jones
33 Hunter St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
Hidden away in a cosy sandstone warehouse on Hobart’s prized waterfront, Peacock and Jones is a goldmine of foodie proportions. Although it’s tucked away nicely from the hustle and bustle of the city, this covertness doesn’t carry over into rustling up your dish. In fact, from your prime position in the ‘open kitchen’ you’ll see your food sliced, smell it seasoned and hear it sizzle. From the smaller offerings of pickled beetroot and charcuterie to the main dishes of Berkshire pork and grilled wallaby, this restaurant is a must-add to your Hobart bucket list.
98 Patrick St, Hobart Tas 7000 – $$-$$$
The reasonably priced highlight of many a foodie’s trip to Tasmania, Templo is a small 20-seater (and local favourite) tucked away in the back streets of Hobart. With their shared food, unique wines, communal dining and (practically) guaranteed good times, Templo’s modern Italian cuisine and state-famous G&T will have you giddily mashing the 5 star rating on Tripadvisor (unless you are part of the 3% of reviewers that don’t understand the concept of ‘intimate’ dining).
The Urban Greek
103 Murray St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
Hercules himself would fight the cyclops all over again to get his hands on a creamy warm Moussaka from The Urban Greek. Meanwhile Achilleus wouldn’t think twice about running though the pain in his lower calf to secure a reservation at this contemporary jazz of traditional Greek food and modern hospitality. After living for more than 20 years in the idyllic and culture rich island of Crete, The Urban Greek’s owners returned to Hobart with countless recipes to share. From char-grilled octopus to melt-in-mouth homemade pastries, the delicacies of Greece are now available in Hobart for everyone to enjoy.
Pier one, Brooke St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$$$
On the top floor of Brooke Street Pier on Hobart’s ‘lofty’ waterfront lies a restaurant experience (arguably) better than Venice. And what better way to take in Hobart’s most spectacular harbour views than on a four story pontoon that rises with the tide? Aloft’s architecture isn’t the only thing that adapts adeptly to its environment: the menu focuses on seasonal herbs and vegetables, locally caught and harvested seafood, and small-farm free-range meat and dairy. Plus: the open-plan restaurant has bar seats overlooking the kitchen, where you can watch the chefs at work: so sit by the window and share from the tasting menu, or enjoy some snacks with a glass of wine at the bar.
Corner Elizabeth St & Pitt St, North Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
A dramatic and inventive Mexican restaurant and tequila bar, Pancho Villa’s revolutionary name-sake is a fitting emblem for what has become known as one of the best restaurants in Hobart. With a dark and subtle vibe, superb service and melt-in-the-mouth food, as well as an impressive tequila-list, there’s something here for everyone from families and straight-edge couples to shot-slinging groups of mates on tour.
The Agrarian Kitchen
11a The Avenue, New Norfolk TAS 7140 – $$-$$$
What do you get when you cross an asylum with a world class kitchen? The Agrarian! Just kidding. Sort of… The Agrarian Kitchen is a cooking school and eatery of hearty rural fare built upon the foundations of the town’s old mental asylum. A place where seasonal produce is celebrated (the whole menu is essentially a specials board) and drinking is less a sin as it is an art, the dining experience is unpretentious, diner-oriented and above all, convivial.
1 Franklin Wharf, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
Food from Argentina and an airy locale (albeit slightly more frigid than buenos aires) with bright furnishings and oversized lamps, Frank is Hobart’s funkiest parilla place. The open converted-office foyer-space fosters a festive mood, so yoink some friends along, sup some vibrant cocktails (or let the bartender recommend a ‘local’ South American grape), sample the tapas and gorge yourself sideways on the mains. The meat is really what you are here for; an Argentine speciality it is tender, tasty and served with soft chimichurri and spicy sauce—a match made in heaven. Then, if you’ve any space left, indulge in a nemesis cake with creme fraise and raspberry or charred banana with almond and caramel ice-cream. You’ll be so absorbed in the food you might not even notice the Hobart waterfront.
Landscape Restaurant & Grill
23 Hunter St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$$$
From freshly shucked oysters and carefully drizzled salad to expertly grilled steak, potato gnocchi, seafood risotto, elegantly roasted fish, “surf and turf” rock lobster and much more, Landscape Restaurant & Grill creates a sublime dining experience in the heart of Hobart’s Hunter Street waterfront precinct. Their love for their island home’s produce has remained the foundation of their experimentation, while the unrivalled environment in which it’s all served—the historic walls of the IXL jam factory, surrounded by the iconic art of John Glover—makes it an experience to fly (over) for.
The Drunken Admiral
17/19 Hunter St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
If no fuss, quality sea-food is what you’re after then the Tasmanian Hospitality Award ‘Best Seafood Restaurant 2012 Winner’ is the place to go. From your baked vienna loaf and salt n’ pepper squid to the fish market (of the day’s) selection, all the way up until the hilariously named (no spoilers here) desserts, The Drunken Admiral has zero pretentiousness whatsoever, and consistently serves top notch food.
Ettie’s Wine Bar & Restaurant
100 Elizabeth St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
Ettie’s Wine Bar & Restaurant is a place of simple, elegant dishes paired with old world wines and contemporary brews. The local produce of Tasmania is the protagonist at this casual bistro, while the beautiful surrounds remind you the growers are not far away. Inspired by classic European traditions, the team at Ettie’s have brought humble, flavourful and vibrant recipes home to Hobart, and designed a wine list to be paired with it, or to enjoy at the bar. This list is carefully curated from vineyards both local and global, in a way that never fails to delight and inspire. So sit back, embrace the boutique charm, order a cold one and enjoy your meal.
The Source (Mona)
655 Main Rd, Berriedale TAS 7011 – $$-$$$
If you’re of the artsy persuasion, you’ll know the museum of old and modern art (Mona). Located eleven kilometres north of Hobart—approximately twenty-five minutes by ferry, or twenty minutes by road—The Source sets the scene for Mona’s infamous lunches and grubby after parties. Secluded from the selfie-taking hordes, this is where outlaws, musicians and artists go to get inspired (the Bloody Mary breakfasts don’t hurt either). Alternatively, discerning travellers can have a slightly less liquid-lunch of wallaby tartare, or any number of Chef Terry’s seasonally sourced dishes, which are all prepared with a hint of mischief. Oh and a word of warning: if you delve into Mona’s mythical wine cellar, make sure to book yourself onto the late ferry.
The Glass House
Brooke Street Pier, Franklin Wharf, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
It glows like a beacon. It floats but it’s not a boat. It’s the place at the end of the Pier (the same one where ferries for MONA and Peppermint Bay depart). The Glass House is a premium dining bar with a penchant for elegant cocktails, tasty shared plates, international flair and (almost) panoramic harbour views. Whether you drink in the water vistas from the front dining lounge or a leather bar stool in the back rooms, you’ll have a selection of old-style cocktails, Tasmanian wines, craft beers and award-winning whiskies at your command. In terms of food, the indecisive among us are well-advised to pick the “feed me” option, which gives you a taste of everything from $75 per person, while the specialists can weigh up whether they want freshly shucked oysters or kumquat ponzu, chicken liver parfait or salmon sashimi, yellowtail kingfish carpaccio or braised scottsdale pork belly, wild clover lamb rump or miso roasted eggplant and cape grim beef cheeks or crispy fried heirloom potatoes (just to give you a few samples of what’s on offer).
The Black Footed Pig
8 Brooke St, Hobart TAS 7000 – $$-$$$
From the Mount Zero olives to the potato and chorizo bombas, pan fried octopus, vegan paella and confit pork pelly al Pedro Ximenez it becomes abundantly clear that this is a true Spanish restaurant offering a mix of Mediterranean, Australian, vegetarian and gluten free food. Tucked away from the main street in Hobart’s waterfront, The Black Footed Pig pays homage to fresh local produce that has been ethically sourced and sustainably grown, and the owners’ passion for food and wine is palpable. Oh and the menu changes regularly, so get in quick if you want a piece of the lemon meringue or spiced honey parfait, or any of Spain’s specialty dessert wines.