Don’t panic! While many places are fully booked for Christmas Day, there are still some options available. Here’s our list of places you can feast with family or friends, then relax without a second thought about the dishes. But get in quick, availability is fast disappearing.
Lunch from 12 to 4pm and Dinner from 6pm -10pm. Corner Exhibition and Little Bourke streets, $195 per adult.
Locanda is preparing a buffet lunch and dinner stacked full of traditional faves and modern Aussie dishes. We got hungry just reading about the herb-crumbed black Angus striploin and the salmon with fennel, lemon and capers. For dessert, there’s Nutella cannoli and a chocolate fountain.
The Wharf Hotel
Sittings at 11.30am and 2.30pm, WTC Wharf – Riverside. $95 per adult.
Soak up the summer sunshine at the waterside Wharf Hotel while enjoying traditional wintry Yuletide fare. Forget about the irony, just tuck into the three-course lunch that includes roast turkey, sage and onion stuffing. For dessert, there’s Christmas pudding with custard.
Christmas Day Pool Party at The Holiday Inn
1pm – 4pm, Flinders Lane. $75 per adult and $35 per child
Keep it low key this Christmas and celebrate with the chef’s barbecue lunch at the Holiday Inn’s pool terrace. There’ll also be a spread of cold and hot buffet items, plus desserts. All that’s left for you to do is lie by the pool with a cocktail and take a splash once you’ve digested lunch.
Choose to order the teppanyaki or à la carte set menu. Koko is offering both options, for the same price and either include a glass of Moët on arrival. Start with crayfish. tuna and NZ salmon sashimi and move on to melt-in-your-mouth wagyu beef. Finish with yuzu and mango Bûche de Noël (Yule Log) served with coconut ice cream.
Traditional Christmas dinner with a twist. You’ll begin by dining on kingfish carpaccio and crayfish medallions. Then you’ll move on to the favourites like roast turkey with chestnut stuffing. To finish, you can choose to keep it traditional with the Christmas pudding and crème Anglaise. Or you can opt for the mouth-watering bombe Alaska with pistachio ice cream.
From 12pm, Spring Street. $359 per adult.
Lovers of old-fashioned elegance will love the festive lunch at Hotel Windsor. The buffet includes an oyster-shucking station, a carvery with ham, roast turkey and more. Plus there are beautiful British and French desserts. Drinks are part of the package, so raise a glass with friends and family.
11.30am to 5.30pm, Queens Street. $230 per adult.
Say hello to seasonal produce as Saxe Restaurant takes you on a five-course journey through some of its best dishes of 2019. While away your Christmas Day in the elegant dining room, and take the guesswork out of wine pairings thanks to the menu’s expert recommendations.
From 11.30am, South Wharf. $69 per adult.
Enjoy a Thai take on Yuletide by the river at bright and bubbly BangPop. The seven-course sharing banquet includes red duck curry and caramelised banana parfait. This also stars in the alternative banquet for vegan and vegetarian diners. Add fruity drinks and you’re almost having Christmas in Bangkok.
Sittings at 12pm, 3.30pm and 6.30pm, Southbank. $80 per adult.
Bring some Irish cheer to Christmas Day at PJ O’Brien’s. They’re turning on a three-course meal including turkey and ham roast, seafood chowder and Irish apple crumble with toffee sauce. Add a beer or two and you’ll soon be saying ‘sláinte’ to one and all.
12pm to 4pm, Crown. $195 per person.
Be whisked away to Paris with this six-course lunch inspired by the city of love. Take in the riverside views while feasting on indulgent dishes such as Clarence River prawn cocktail and Tajima wagyu fillet. A glass Moët and Chandon NV is also included.