Myra Hargreaves Co owner of Byron Bay organic doughnuts, with Scott Graham.
Myra Hargreaves Co owner of Byron Bay organic doughnuts, with Scott Graham. Doug Eaton

30 awesome food experiences on the Northern Rivers

THERE is so much to explore in the culinary realm of the Northern Rivers.

We have listed just 30 great foodie experiences to be had from our newsroom, but you may have your own.

Feel free to let us know what gastronomic delights you have experienced.

1. Simply delicious doughnuts

It was unanimous. Byron Bay Organic Doughnuts are a Northern Rivers treat you simply cannot miss. You can find them at various markets across the region.

Giant soft squishy doughnuts as big as your face, smothered in Traditional blackberry jam or dark chocolate? You decide.

Owner of LaVida David De Nardi shares his paella dish.
Owner of LaVida David De Nardi shares his paella dish. Cathy Adams

2. The Spanish experience

Drop in to LaVida in Lismore for an authentic paella in a traditional courtyard dining experience.

Order a ton of tapas at La Vida.

Natasha Patton (holding the tray of pies) and Julie Baker at the Pie Cart in Lismore.
Natasha Patton (holding the tray of pies) and Julie Baker at the Pie Cart in Lismore. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

3 Pie floater

Sitting on the back porch of the Lismore Pie Cart, and delving into a pie floater is a very Lismore experience. A meat pie floating in a sea of peas, and topped by mashed potato is a popular meal at this dining truck.

Not keen on peas? What about an eggs benedict pie? Or a duck pie? Or maybe peach?

There are lots of flavours to choose from.

LR- Julie Dickson,Owner, Evan Whittington, Chef, Rob Cooper, Front of house, David Tindale, Chef. All from the Black Sombrero, Mexican restaurant in Lismore.
LR- Julie Dickson,Owner, Evan Whittington, Chef, Rob Cooper, Front of house, David Tindale, Chef. All from the Black Sombrero, Mexican restaurant in Lismore. DOUG EATON

4 Mexican magic

You can't beat a margarita at Black Sombrero.

With a taco on the side, and a salty rimmed glass full of liquid gold... you can't miss.

5. Vegetarian experience

Do you prefer something without meat?

Enjoy a vegeratarian feast at 20,000 Cows.

6. Golden milk

Get golden milk at The Roadhouse in Byron Bay. The tumeric latte has become an iconic institution.

TEMPTING TASTINGS: Takayuki, Takashi, Aki and Shine at the new Federal Doma Café.
TEMPTING TASTINGS: Takayuki, Takashi, Aki and Shine at the new Federal Doma Café. Veda Dante

7. Doma Japanese Café Federal

Where having cones for breakfast takes on a whole new meaning.

Try a larger than usual sushi hand roll cone with delicious fillings such as haloumi and mustard pickles and the one with a Japanese hash brown in it.

When I say this, it is quite possibly the best Japanese I have ever had, I mean it.

This Japanese restaurant is located in Federal (a short drive from Byron) and is the perfect spot for lunch.

All produce is sourced from the local markets and prepared on site.

This is fresh food at it's best. We love this place!

8 Unique dining

Francisco's Table - pop-up community dining featuring a five-course meal with awesome local produce.

You sit at communal tables and meet people, and he comes out and gives you a run down of what he's cooking and where it came from.

It's held in community halls in pretty places like Coorabell and Federal.

Mullum Farmers Market has awesome food.
Mullum Farmers Market has awesome food. Kate O'Neill

9 Market on good food

Mullumbimby Farmers Market for lots of local produce, big shady fig trees to sit under and eat breakfast cooked from local produce.

Highlights are Sicilian style food, sushi, dumplings, vegan food, local coffee, great people watching and music.  

Shane Morritt, manager of Beloporto Burger Bar in Byron Bay.
Shane Morritt, manager of Beloporto Burger Bar in Byron Bay. Cathy Adams

10 Portuguese style burgers

Beloporto Burger Bar in Byron Bay has delicious burgers.

Try the strip burger with Portuguese chilli mayo and fries.

11 The Top Shop

Hang out with the local hipsters - must have beard.

The popular, laid-back hangout serves brekkie, single-origin coffee and creative burgers.

Get in quick for a table.

12 Best chips in town... or maybe the world?

Who would have thought?

The best chips in the world can be found at Fat Freddy's in Goonellabah.

An added bonus is the delicious whiting, and don't miss the cheesecake in a cup.

Open 10am to 2pm, Thursday and Friday, and then 4-8pm Thursday to Sunday.

13 and... the best coffee in town?

On of our favourites is Cafe 114 in Lismore. Drop in for awesome coffee and a really yummy brekkie burger.

Mega Pizza was rated the top pizza store in Lismore.
Mega Pizza was rated the top pizza store in Lismore. Facebook

14 What about your favourite pizza?

Consistently on the top of our readers best pizza list is Mega Pizza in East Lismore.

Mr Mozarella and Milk and Honey at Mullumbimby also get a shout out.

15 Flavoursome food

You have to try the butter chicken at Flavours of India in Lismore.

The chargrilled, smokey chicken in a buttery, spicy sauce served on a bed of cardamom spiced rice is to die for.

16. Malibu Burger

They have won The Northern Star's best burger poll and can be found at Ballina

The Evans Head Fishermen's co-op pelican feeding
The Evans Head Fishermen's co-op pelican feeding

17. Fresh seafood

Try the best fresh seafood at the Evans Head Co-op, sitting in the nearby park on the Evans River.

Or watch the pelicans getting fed.

You can't beat fresh fish, straight from the sea.

18. La Baracca

Lovely meals at this Keen St, Lismore restaurant.

But get in early as this place gets packed early.

Joel and Simon taking part in Wednesday Chess at The Mecca in Lismore
Joel and Simon taking part in Wednesday Chess at The Mecca in Lismore Sophie Moeller

19. The Mecca

Take a trip down memory lane in Lismore with its old style booths and milkshakes.

20. Best breakfast

Heavens it's Evans to Betsy, Evans Head, with its poached eggs on organic sour dough bread.

21. Vegan varieties

Flock to Flock in Lismore for their delicious vegan cafe treats including doughnuts.

22. More vegan variations

When out and about try Raw Cakes by Coco at various different markets.

23. Blue Kitchen

They have a harissa and preserved lemon dressing that's to die for.

Check out their shop in South Lismore.

HERES CHEERS: The Ink Gin shiraz martini made from Husk Distillers awarded craft gin.
HERES CHEERS: The Ink Gin shiraz martini made from Husk Distillers awarded craft gin.

24. Beautiful beverages

If you love colour you must try Ink Gin from Husk Distillers at Tumbulgum.

It gets its unique purple colouring from the butterfly pea flower.

It turns pink with the addition of tonic water.

25. Bluesfest experience

The Hare Krishna Buddha balls at Bluesfest were nominated for their crispy on the outsideand soft in the middle texture.

They're vegan, so but you don't need to be a vegan to eat them.

Stone and Wood Pacific Ale.
Stone and Wood Pacific Ale. Will Hunter

26. Best beer

Stone and Wood beer brewed at Byron Bay.

Pop into the Byron Bay brewery for a sample ot two.

Their beers have gained national recognition.

27. Yum cha experience

Red Ginger yum cha anddumplings in Byron and Bangalow.

Also Palate, in downtown Lismore has great food with a seasonal menu and lots of locally sourced ingredients.

28 Mi Thai in Lennox Head

Love whole fish and any chilli prawn type dishes.

29 Miss Margaritas

You can't book, but drinking a beer or margarita on the bench outside while you wait builds the anticipation for the moment when you tuck into the delicious fish tacos.

30. Car boot markets

Go there for brunch.. whatever takes your fancy... from dumplings, fresh juice, german sausages, and the kebab trailer


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