Nestled within a picturesque nursery and a hidden Dural gem, Wildpear Cafe is a friendly, neighbourhood restaurant and bar, serving wholesome fun and flavoursome fare.
In the kitchen, you’ll find the youngest ever winner of MasterChef – Larissa Takchi, who wowed the judges and country with her spectacular and innovative desserts. We asked Larry to take us on a tour of her favourite local spots to grab a bite and spend a lazy Sunday session:
Larissa Takchi, MasterChef 2019 winner.
Your go-to coffee spot?
I hate to say it, but I am not the biggest coffee drinker. I know Wildpear Café is a great fit for local coffee drinkers; but I also hear ONA Coffee in Marrickville is bang on!
Best spot to banish a hangover?
Mary’s Burgers in Newtown for sure. Don’t know about you guys, but I want the full fat, greasy carbs dripping down my fingers, before I pass out again and repeat…he he.
Favourite takeaway joint?
So many options for takeaway since this whole COVID thing! The best takeaway I’ve had was from Poly (Surry Hills), man that bread with the sesame whip and parsley oil was the bomb! Even travelling for an hour there and back, it was still so delicious!
Poly's bread, sesame whip and parsley oil.
Where you go to splurge?
Ho Jiak Townhall – I remember the first time I went. My friends Khan and Courtney (season 11 MasterChef contestants) took me there and I was shocked at the spread of food we received from Chef Junda Khoo. I had the best Singaporean chilli crab and used steaming hot mantou buns to dunk in anything I could. If you want to splurge, mate you splurge right here! My recommendation is to go with a big group of people and order as much as you can off the menu – yum!
Ho Jiak Townhall
Your favourite place to take the family?
Una Mas at Coogee Pavilion. This is the place for the best tapas you can get in town. It’s pretty standard for our family to go here and no joke, order everything off their menu. It’s a good-sized menu broken up into an array of tapas-style dishes. I love that we get to taste and relish in all of the Mediterranean flavours. P.S. the hot pork terrine and burnt Basque cheesecake are a must.
Hot pork terrine at Una Mas.
Where your staff go after work?
Well, for us we live and work in a rural area (Dural), so it’s not the easiest place to drop by restaurants, which are essentially non-existent in the area. We tend to plan nights out in the city for dinner, or drinks at a bar. But really, The Vicar in Dural is our go-to after a big day at work.
Restaurant you most want to try?
I want to try Restaurant Leo. I hear it is amazing modern Italian food, that just opened recently, there’s nothing like carbs on carbs, right?
When you’re craving a good pub feed?
The Old Fitz in Woolloomooloo. This pub kind of reminds me of Tom McHugo’s in Hobart, the food is AMAZING. People really underestimate a good pub feed. They have an awesome chip butty, a good roast dinner plate with Yorkshire pudding and pepper steak jaffles.
The Old Fitz chip butty.
Best date night venue?
This one is tough! But the best for me is Fred’s, sitting at their Chef’s table. I always love starting downstairs at Charlie Parker’s for a classic Margarita, then head up to Fred’s for a great dinner. The ambience and experience of the place makes you feel as though you’re walking into someone’s kitchen and home.
The best weekend getaway stay (when you’re lucky to have one off)?
Spicers Sangoma Retreat in the Blue Mountains – nestled and tucked away smack bang in the mountains! I like the modern luxe vibes, plus they have the best spas.
Spicers Sangoma Retreat.
Favourite Sunday session?
I love going to the top level of Coogee Pavilion. On a nice day, you order a passionfruit caprioska and margherita pizza (they have the best pizzas in Sydney) overlooking Coogee Beach.
When you’re craving something sweet?
All I want is a bowl of fresh raspberries and a fat dollop of peanut butter – call me weird, but it’s my ultimate craving.
Best brunch spot?
That’s easy - Wildpear Cafe in Dural. We have pretty much become an institution for the best breaky in the Hills.
Your furry friend’s preferred pet-friendly spot?
Well, I don’t have any pets, but sometimes I like to say that my best friend Lynette is somewhat like a family pet we never had, ha ha…
Where do you go to let your hair down?
Old Mates Place, my go-to bar with rooftop and lounges, such cool old library vibes.
Old school library vibes at Old Mate's Place.
The best spot to indulge in seafood?
Ormeggio 2.0, they just reopened and their seafood has to be the best in Sydney right now. It’s right on the water and the seafood is so fresh and treated with so much respect. Definitely get ready to put on your lobster bib.
The best place for a late-night feed?
I love, love, love Mr Crackles on Oxford Street. I order a cup of pork crackling and the best pork roll, yuummm! Honestly, it’s what I live for.
Where you grab your local produce from?
I get my produce from Darling Mills Farm in Galston, my local. They specialise in all things lettuce and micro herbs.
Newly opened and loving it?
Café Paci – potatoes, molasses, bread…need I say more?
Tell us a fun fact not many people know about you?
I remember when I first started cooking years ago, when a recipe called for ‘a cup of this, or a cup of that’, I would get an actual tea mug and measure the ingredients that way. Took me longer than expected to realise they’re measured cups I should have used. It baffled me why my baked goods never worked out.
Where’s your favourite local? Click here to tell us where you hang out and help us Support Your Local in these crazy times.