Meet 9 sustainably minded eateries creating kinder dining experiences for people and the planet. Here’s where to find delicious, ethically prepared eats and sustainable sustenance from Sydney to Bangkok.
1. Orphans Kitchen, Auckland, New Zealand
From its petite Victorian villa in Auckland, New Zealand, Orphans Kitchen proves the adage good things come in small packages through its refined yet relaxed fare. This 40-seater cafe centres its dishes around sustainable practices. Executive Chef Tom Hishon and Manager Josh Helm form a passionate partnership, focussed on educating diners on traditional Māori food preparation and openly championing sustainable food-sourcing – be it fromthe seas, forests, farmlands or rivers of New Zealand.
2. Warung Goûthé by Jean and Yen, Bali, Indonesia
Canggu’s rustic, family-run eatery Warung Goûthé is dedicated to its zero footprint philosophy and waste-free ethos. Though this unassuming warung may resemble a welcoming, traditional Balinese-style cafe, its menu pays tribute to Jean’s French heritage – marrying French culinary techniques and Balinese ingredients. Start the day on a sweet note with French pastries (think cinnamon brioche and sourdough baguettes) and fresh juices.
3. Hoama, Bangkok, Thailand
Helmed by talented culinary creative Deepanker Khosla, known simply as Chef DK, Hoama is a ‘regenerative urban farm restaurant’. On the restaurant’s grounds, vegetables, herbs and even fish are grown and harvested right where diners can see them. The restaurant’s pesticide-free, aquaponics farm creates a tidy loop system where food waste is returned to the soil. Better yet, the locale’s menu, touted as ‘neo-Indian’ is flavoursome, sophisticated and always artfully adorned.
4. La Brisa, Bali, Indonesia
There are few more iconic places to dine than Echo Beach and, at breezy La Brisa, patrons are given a front-row view of this scenic and relaxed setting. The venue itself was built using reclaimed wood from fishing boats, and its consciously minded menu showcases locally sourced, sustainable produce. Diners can sit back and enjoy the soundtrack of live music by the beach, while watching a sunset and devouring the likes of fresh ceviche, pan-seared barramundi, salads and sweets worth saving room for.
5. Cornersmith, Sydney, Australia
With a name that’s become synonymous with ethical consumption, Annandale’s Cornersmith cafe is a must-visit for conscious travellers. Not only has the vegetarian, waste-fighting venue published a collection of books on waste-reducing cooking for those wanting to better their own kitchen practices, but it also hosts cooking and preserving workshops, and sells rescued ingredients in the form of pickles and other piquant preserves. Go for the top-notch cafe fare and stay for a foodie souvenir shop (suitcase room permitting).
6. Hidden Gem Coffee (Quán Cà Phê Tái Chế), Hanoi, Vietnam
As its name suggests, Hidden Gem Coffee is an unexpected treat in the Old Quarter of Hanoi. What lies beyond its shopfront is even more of a surprise. Set over multiple levels, the eclectic cafe is formed from recycled materials – including its furniture and decor. Not only is the cafe sustainably fit out, but Hidden Gem Coffee’s planet-friendly ethos extends to its organic, locally sourced food and drinks. Locals and travellers alike frequent Hidden Gem Coffee for its top-quality coffee, fresh vegetarian and vegan dishes, and convivial atmosphere.
7. The Summertown Aristologist, Adelaide Hills, Australia
Nestled in one of South Australia’s most exciting wine regions and led by South Australian hospitality heavyweights, it may come as no surprise that The Summertown Aristologist pours delicious drops of local wines alongside dishes that highlight hyper-locally grown produce. In fact, the restaurant boasts its own organic farm from which much of its produce is plucked. A from-scratch philosophy means everything from sourdough to butter are made on-site and a rotating menu, featuring house-made fermented ingredients, aligns with the seasons.
8. Ortega Fish Shack, Wellington, New Zealand
Well-loved Ortega Fish Shack may be a fine-diner, but its laid-back ambience and fun-filled approach to food makes it feel like a friendly, neighbourhood eatery. Bedecked with glowing buoy lights, a large marlin keeping watch, and paintings honouring Wellington’s fishing past, Ortega Fish Shack is a warm restaurant that sees local, sustainably sourced seafood sing on the plate. Here, chefs design the daily menu around what ingredients are the most sustainable and fresh.
9. Harvest Newrybar, Byron Bay Hinterland, Australia
Set in the picturesque village of Newrybar, a short drive from the beaches of Byron Bay, Harvest is a community-centred, casual restaurant (meets deli, meets bakery) where produce is grown on site, and workshops encourage visitors to engage with their food sources. A love for the land around the restaurant sees Harvest’s chefs connect with likeminded farmers, artisan producers and growers in this lush corner of Northern New South Wales. The result is an enticing, ever-evolving, seasonal menu that makes use of native flavours and ensures ingredients are served at their prime.