Vino e Cucina is an Italian restaurant and bar in Paddington, at the hub of the Five Ways precinct, in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs. The European atmosphere is aided by alfresco dining on the street, as well as a more romantic setting out the back. There is also a modern dining setting inside this charming heritage terrace building, with the walls adorned with magnificent artwork by local artists. Vino e Cucina is the creation of restaurateurs, chef Michael Bengtsson and Julia Walker-Bengtsson, a husband and wife team, who have also created other loved Five Ways Paddington venues Eat Thai and Tuk Tuk bar (formerly Heeley St Espresso). ‘Vino’ or ‘Vino e Cucina Paddo’, as it is also affectionately known, is becoming a favourite among locals and traditional Italian dining connoisseurs. The warm Italian ambience is a result of meticulous attention to detail by these seasoned restaurateurs. The elegant dining room, relaxed terraza and alfresco tables out the front, have been furnished with a very personal touch. There are even pots of herbs growing in old imported Italian tomato cans in the terraza out the back and red geraniums in wine casks out the front where you can sit and watch Paddington go by. The staff have all been carefully selected to represent Vino e Cucina as a provenziale Italian trattoria style restaurant, bar and pizzeria (there’s even a dedicated Pizzaiolo), but with a few modern touches. Couples can come for a romantic dinner or families can come and enjoy a hearty feast of pizza. Those wanting to dine solo, or just enjoy a glass of wine, are also very welcome. There is also a Salumi bar and a wine selection to keep you busy for hours, and we must give a special mention to the homemade Limoncello. If you can’t make it to Italy for a holiday, this is the next best thing.