Friday, January 31, 2014

Cranky Fins Holidae Inn at Palm Beach

Cranky Fins Holidae Inn

So now you have another reason to visit the Northern Beaches of Sydney.  Cranky Fins Holidae Inn, is a great addition to an already vibrant dining scene in Palm Beach.  I stumbled upon the restaurant, on a visit to our favourite swimming spot, recently.  The joint was jumping, so I was itching to try it out, stat.  To say this restaurant is fabulous, does not do it justice.  The food was great,  Promise me, you will not go past the Roast Pork Tacos.  They were really good and the crackling was divine. 

The vibe screams,  'it's the place to be'.  The fact that it is located in one of the nicest spots on the planet, is also in Cranky's favour.

Take a look around.   All the details you will need to know, for a great day out in paradise, are at the bottom.

So here's what you'll need to know:

Location: 1 Beach Road Palm Beach NSW 2108

Distance from Sydney CBD: 45.4km and about 1hour and 10 minutes by car.

Phone: (61) (2) 9974 1159. No table reservations necessary, but they are available.  To give you some idea, a booking was not necessary on Australia Day, even though the joint was jumping. We were seated immediately, but if we weren't, a pre drinky on the lounges, or outside on the deck, would have been a great option. 

Open: During School Term, Wednesday to Sunday, Midday to 10.30pm These times may be extended during Summer school holidays and on long weekends, but phone ahead.

Closed: Monday and Tuesday

The vibe: Think beautiful people. Young and funky, kid friendly and colourful. Part beach shack, come Mexican hacienda, with a big dose of vintage nautical kitsch thrown in.  Look out for all the beach pop art painted directly onto the walls, it's fabulous.

Restaurant and Bar: Offering an excellent range of shared fusion Australian cuisine, for lunch and dinner. I would describe it as modern Mexican Cantina style. Cranky Fins Holidae Inn is licensed with a good range of wine, beer, margaritas and the like.  Be prepared to drink your cocktails out of a jar.

Kid's Menu: Yes, it includes all the usual suspects such as, spag bol and fish and chips. $13.50 each.  The paddle pops at $2.95 were a hit with my kids.

Highchairs: Yes

Parking: Some free untimed on street parking. Plenty of parking in Governor Phillip Park across the road, which is ticketed.  Cars bearing a Pittwater parking sticker, park for free. Obviously parking gets tighter on weekends and public holidays.

Public Transport: Yes, take the L90 bus from Wynyard, which stops on Barrenjoey Road near the entrance to Governor Phillip Park.  

Seaplane: Sydney Sea Planes flies to Station Beach on the Pittwater side of Palm Beach.  There is a wharf for alighting at The Boat House, The plane leaves Sydney from Rose Bay.  From the landing point, Cranky Fins Holidae Inn is a 400m walk south, back towards Barrenjoey Road.

Toilets: Yes

Shade: Yes plenty of it.  There is an indoor dining area around the bar with booth and couch style dinning. There is more dining outside on the undercover deck, where you can sit up high and watch the world go by.

Fire Place: Yes there is a slow burner stove type fireplace, which is enclosed, in the bar area.

Childrens' Playground: Yes, there is a good unenclosed one, just near the entrance to Governor Phillip Park across the road, which has recently been renovated and is fabulous for toddlers to tweens.

Views: Are minimal.  There are views from the outdoor deck across the golf course to cameos of Pittwater. But the indoor styling is visually interesting enough to compensate.

Other attractions: Palm Beach Golf links, which are directly across the road.    Barrenjoey Boat Hire operates at the end of Govenor Phillip Park and is about 400m from Barrenjoey Road.  You can hire kayaks, stand up paddle boards and small fishing boats daily. You can also walk up to Barrenjoey Light House and take a guided tour inside the light house and heritage buildings on Sundays, via NSW National Parks.

In general:  We absolutely loved Cranky Fins Holidae Inn, for it's food, it's colour and its quirky vintage beach vibe. We had no trouble getting a table, even though the place appeared full on first inspection.  It is quite noisy, but it did not bother me at all.  All ordering is done at the bar and pleasant apron clad wait staff, bring the food to your table. Credit cards are accepted. There is a surcharge on Sundays and public holidays.  Overall I would say it is definitely well worth the trip.

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  1. That looks like my kind of place Carolyn. I could imagine myself sipping a Margarita there. Beautiful!

    Anne xx

  2. WOW sounds like a fun place to eat and sounds like the food is very good also. I will take some of those wonderful looking tacos.
    Have a great weekend.

  3. I'd be there. It looks awesome and a lot of fun. The food photos looked so great that I thought I could it it off the screen.

  4. It looks so colourful and gorgeous, many thanks for the introduction as I haven't heard of this dining spot. We need your insider info on all the top spots up your way - keep 'em coming... and a great link post one day to all your Northern Beaches post would be fab.

    Love the way you have done the photos, and all the close ups of quirky stuff.

  5. This is exactly the sort of restaurant the building suits. I never thought that fibro/weatherboard shack suited a fine dining experience. I'm sure this restaurant will do very well as it's exactly what Palm Beach has been screaming out for - somewhere casual, not OTT with price, a place you can take the kids or enjoy a night out with the girls. And Mexican food is so trendy right now. I can't wait to go there xx


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