Talk It Out

Favourite hangout in your city?

A local's recommendations make the WORLD of difference. 

Have you ever jumped out of a cab in a city you don’t know and wondered where to go next? I HAVE.

I wanted to eat sushi in Tokyo but after one look at the overwhelming number of neon signs, I followed the only one that was all too familiar… that golden M lighting the way to my Fish Filet.

I’m originally from London and it’s in my bones to move around. When travelling, all I wish to do is live like the locals, but if I rely on old mate Google, I find myself in a sweaty backpacker bar covered in beer.

After dating an Australian, I actually followed him home to Melbourne. I may have lost the love for him along the way but I totally gained a three-page list of all the best go-tos. Back then, I couldn’t have felt more at home in Blackcat Fitzroy (even though I couldn’t have been further away from my actual home, The Uxbridge Arms in London).

Now, living in Sydney, you’ll find me at Neighbourhood, Bondi (every/any day). We even have our work meetings there because Carmen’s addicted to the Royale with Cheese.

So to help make-up for lost time in places like Piccadilly Circus, we want to turn this article into a local’s guide to the entire world.

Let’s compile a list of hangouts from your hometown/new places you’ve been so we can always have good coffee and great times abroad.

By Lainy Black.

Up next: HOW TO – Fray Your Denim



eighteen Replies



    Prudence, North Melbourne – “like the locals do”
    The Eathouse Diner, Sydney – homey/hearty food & bang for $
    Pergola On The Roof, London – you know for those ‘summer’ days 😉
    Cafe 43, Hoi An – you’ll eat every meal there.
    Never Follow Suit, Kuala Lumpur – peruse at beautiful clothes ‘n other cute things
    Angela’s Place, Máncora – get to Peru and eat here. Life changing.

  • MY SYDNEY/NYC LIST (side note: I’m wayyy overdue for a vacay)

    The Shop, Bondi – get the meatball salad!!
    Porch & Parlour, Bondi – my happy place
    The Apollo, Sydney – for long lunches (get the banquet!)
    10 William St, Sydney- cosy ‘n cool with an epic wine list
    Saturdays, NYC – coffee and sunshine 🙂
    Two Hands Cafe, NYC – Aus owned… a taste of home away from home!
    An Choi, NYC – extra salty margaritas and cheap/cheerful food
    The Polo Bar, NYC – Ralph Lauren does all the things.
    Da Adolfo, Positano – sunshine, swims, peach-infused wine and seafood… WHAT MORE COULD YOU WANT


      Raw bar!!

  • Brooke

    Josie North Coffee in Brisbane, hands down coffee in QLD! x


      Next time I am there I’ll be sure to get coffee there, can you recommend any food spots?

  • Gould St Deluxe in Bondi because Nathan the owner speaks to me like he’s my Greek grandmother. Lols. Food, coffee and vibes are great too. Tucked away hidden gem.


      I’ve never been but I will take a trip there this weekend!

  • Meghan

    Terroni, Toronto – the cutest decorated Italian restaurant with an amazing cheese & charcuterie board
    Restoration hardware outlet, Toronto premium outlets – no explanation necessary!
    Girl & the goat, Chicago – favourite place to eat


      Can’t go wrong with Italian!

  • Ainsley Hansen

    I have recently moved back to Bondi, I spent the last year in Manly Sydney below are my top picks when crossing states 😉

    – Hugos! They currently have 1/2 price pizzzzzaaa (lunch spec)
    – Chica bonita – HOLLLA
    – Ormeggio at The Spit – FANCY but do a Sunday SPEC 5 course Chef’s Degustation for
    only $69 per person!!!
    – Shelly Beach Boat House – They do rose by the Magnum, Pink Billy is my fav! View is to die for, be carful of babyborns!
    – For something nourishing, Ora! its an Organic Wholefood CAFE and is amazing

    My other go tooooooos are
    10 william (as carmen pointed out) – Paddington
    The Paddington – for a 1/2 chicken – Paddington
    Sushi on Stanly – best sushi in Sydney, Darlinghurst
    Buffalo Dining Club – Darlinghurst
    Best scrambled eggs – Bills
    Finally Carmen left out the best thai in the world – Rice Pot – BONDI


      I recently went to Buffalo Dining Club for the first time and I am hooked!

  • Sue@London

    The Salt Room, Brighton – the Octopus was unbelievably melt in your mouth.


      Next time I am in the UK I will definitely check it out, thank you!

  • Chloe

    Supernormal, Melbourne- Asian fusion, everything is a must try especially the salted nutbush!
    Bare Naked Bowls, Sydney- really yummy smoothie bowls to make you feel good inside
    Toko, Sydney- I’m a sucker for Japanese food and cocktails and Toko has the best of both!!
    Jugemu Shimashi, Sydney- another japanese place will killer food and not as well known as other places in sydney. Ask to sit at the bar so you can see the chefs do their magic!
    Urth Cafe, Los Angeles- really busy little cafe but for food in LA this is a good one
    Mooo, Boston- Tucked in the side of a hotel, this place has the best steak!
    Spice Temple, Melbourne- this place will make you like spice

    This was so fun to reminisce and write out!

    x Chloe


      Toko sounds right up my alley, thanks Chloe! You’ve listed loads of places I must check out!


    RSVP for yummy cocktails
    ZAZAII for shopping contemporary African design
    ANYTHING happening on Nothing to Do In Lagos is usually quite fun
    Nike Art Gallery for awe inspiring art
    ALARA for designer fashion
    Casa Ilashe for rest and relaxation on the beach


    the Ivy on King’s Road is perfect in summer!
    Yauatcha and Hakkassan
    Beaufort House, King’s Rd
    AZTECA for the best margaritas!


      How good is Nando’s!!!!!

  • Jacqueline

    Basel, Switzerland:
    Unternemen Mitte – you can stay all day and use the wifi (full of creatives and students who do), artisanal organic pizza, open fire in the winter, inside beach in the summer, Tango on Wednesdays – you can’t go wrong
    Tibits – vegetarian, organic, weigh your plate – the best coffee around….
    Nomad – hip with the young pharma crowd and creatives
    Cafe Schiesser – beautiful, traditional Swiss cafe from the last century (or two) – wonderful cakes and excellent coffee and hot chocolate
    Graziella (Klein Basel, the original): neighborhood Italian cafe – pastries to die for , brilliant coffee, full of artists and locals on Sundays (speaking Italian and discussing soccer and politics)
    Fondation Beyeler – world-class, private art museum, fantastic exhibitions
    Along the Rhine (Klein Basel side), famous independent “buvettes” (summer) – take a dip and float down the Rhine, then enjoy one of the many outside artisan buffets (‘buvette”) serving everything from home-made cakes and gelato, artisan pizza, craft beer, local wines and, and…… (great for people-watching
    ART Basel – anywhere and anytime(!!) during this important contemporary art fair – held once a year in June.