After meeting the publicist of Sydney Tower Restaurant I was invited to dine with a guest, and a child. When you dine here, you get more than just a meal – it’s also an attraction. You feel like a king as you take a separate (uncrowded) lift to the impressive slowly-rotating, modern dining room. Interestingly they are double-decker lifts and the people going to the attraction side of it are above you - they are crammed in like sardines, and your lift shows them on a small screen. You can wave at them, and they wave back - a fact that delighted my young companion, and distracted him from trying to press all the buttons in the lift.
The restaurant is decorated with a simple black and white mural, but the view is the real show-piece. As I mentioned, I was asked to take along a child, as the restaurant is particularly of interest to children. So this is Jett, he's two, and he was particularly excited by seeing six excavators (his favourite type of vehicle) from above in a building site. Of the food, his preference was for the cherry tomatoes, and the chocolate off the top of the profiteroles.
I will say that buffet style eating often means disappointment, but when you dine here, you’ll be surprised at the quality and premium range on offer. I tried a number of things for an appetizer - the best were the shell-your-own prawns, but the oysters from their own lease in Esperance Bay, Tasmania were much better quality than I expected.
Move on to a constantly refreshed selection of Asian and Mediterranean dishes; or step up to the carvery for honey glazed baked ham, rare Terra Rossa Beef and less common selections like Kangaroo and Camel. You also can see a steamed pork bun, and a pork and mushroom wonton. I mostly tried the big hitting dishes, but rest assured, there was a salad bar, and vegetables available.
My other dining companion, often known as Jett's Mother, is a vegetarian, though through her pregnancy she began eating fish again, and this has continued. Her selection included whole baked salmon from the carvery, roast vegetables, a lovely fish and prawn curry and a spinach and chickpea curry. I suspect if she had only wanted vegetarian dishes, she might not have been quite so well catered for - there was enough (just) without much choice.
Linger over a plate of cakes, slices and fresh fruit as the city turns round. I tried a Cherry Ripe Slice (intensely sweet), a Caramel Slice (nice with a buttery biscuit base), a Lamington (excellent) and a Strawberry Profiterole topped with white chocolate (nice) plus some fresh fruit.
By the way, at the beginning of the meal, our waitress quietly whispered that ‘nuggets and chips’ were also available - this was done without Jett overhearing, allowing us the option of trying to get him to eat the more healthy and diverse food available on the buffet. The staff, and specifically our waitress (a veteran of ten years at the restaurant, and even longer in their combined restaurants), were particularly warm to my young dining companion. Nothing was too much trouble – a booster seat, and even cleaning up a smashed wine glass he smashed. You definitely won’t be embarrassed to take your kids here.
As for the price, for lunch adults pay $49.50/head, and children from 3-12 are $24.50. For dinner, the prices are higher, but according to our waitress, the menu remains the same. Might be one to hit for lunch.
Sydney Tower Restaurant
Centrepoint, Gallery Level, 100 Market Street, Sydney
Ph: (02) 8223 3800