Events Restaurants

Waitan, Sydney

Lamborghinis with glamourous Chinese models striking a pose put a halt to traffic along Sussex Street for the much anticipated opening of Waitan.

Waitan, Sydney
Lamborghinis in front of Waitan

Heralding the arrival to luxe Asian dining to Sydney, the launch of Waitan was a glitz and glamour affair that matched the lavish 2,500 square metre venue which cost in excess of ten million dollars.

Waitan, Sydney
Waitan Interior

Occupying two levels, the extravagant décor combines dark timber tones with red accents, plush carpet and mood lights in bird cages.

Waitan, Sydney
Opium Beds

The O Lounge offers guests the opportunity to laze on “opium” beds sipping on their favourite tipple.

Waitan, Sydney
O Lounge

The second floor holds 14 private dining rooms adorned with opium pipe replicas as door handles, silk wallpaper, ornate chandeliers, cabinetry from China, a grill and karaoke equipment, some with walls retracting to increase room capacity.

Waitan, Sydney
Private Room

A private room with its own balcony holds Sydney’s largest dining table, 5.2 metres in diameter accommodating up to 32 diners.

Waitan, Sydney
Largest Table

The Dining Bar on the second floor is home to the Glenmorangie single malt whisky range along with another luxury spirit. The Hennessey X.O Mathusalem is a $50k 6-litre luxury Cognac with its own custom travelling case, hand-crafted by Designer Arik Levy, and the only bottle in existence in Australia and exclusive to Waitan.

Waitan, Sydney
Members’ Club

The members’ area has a private entrance with a statue to one side and a poem scribed on the wall that tells a story of getting drunk under the moon. You’ll notice the writing becoming looser towards the end. Inside the private club with a membership of $10,000, members have access to the Library, four private dining rooms with individual décor and personality where they can enjoy daily drinks and canapés between 5pm and 7pm.

Waitan, Sydney
Private Club Room

The launch was attended by Chinese dignitaries including the Vice-Consul General of People’s Republic of China. Magnums of Veuve Clicquot champagne were on pour throughout the night. Cocktails such as the Beijing Bellini and the Mandarin and Jasmine Luxe made a brief appearance to a lucky few.

Waitan, Sydney
Owners of Waitan

Chef John Rankin, formerly of Quay, Astral and Sean’s Kitchen (now the Annandale Hotel) heads Waitan’s kitchen with a menu of new ‘constructed’ Asian favourites alongside a French Gourmand tasting menu with an eastern twist.

Waitan, Sydney
Executive Chef John Rankin with Blackmore’s wagyu beef buns

Waitan, Sydney
Mr Yuejin Ma and Guests

But the talking point of Waitan is the Peking Duck, prepared by Duck Master Mr Yuejin Ma in the signature duck oven with bricks imported from China.

Waitan, Sydney
Duck Oven

The duck comes from Pepe’s Ducks in Windsor and is cooked in cherry and peach wood which imparts an unparalleled smoky flavour to the succulent meat.

Waitan, Sydney
Peking Duck Station

At the launch, freshly-shucked oysters were served along with salt and pepper prawns, Blackmore’s wagyu beef buns and the popular Peking Duck pancakes, which are set to become Waitan’s signature dish.

Waitan, Sydney

Waitan is open for dinner Monday to Sunday from 6pm til midnight.

Waitan is featured in our Insider Guide to Sydney’s Haymarket.

Level 1, Sussex Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Ph: (02) 8218 1000

Photography © by Kevin Burke for Gourmantic – Copyright: All rights reserved.


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About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is the Founder/Editor of popular online magazine Gourmantic and Cocktails & Bars, a website dedicated to cocktail culture and the discerning drinker. She is named in Australian Bartender Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential List since 2013, is a member of The Academy responsible for judging the World’s 50 Best Bars. She has also judged the inaugural Australasian Whisky Awards and various national cocktail competitions.