As travellers continue to prioritise gourmet food experiences, we revisit The Star in Sydney for 24 hours of indulgence.
For a taste of rich Italian cucina make sure your first port of call is Balla (one hat).
Brace yourself for a feast of delectable lunchtime delights designed by Stefano Manfredi and his Italian team.
The gorgonzola-filled ravioli with pumpkin puree and walnuts will leave you salivating for more. The puree is sweet and silky smooth.
Follow it with a secondi piatti of snapper fillet cooked in a bag with potato, tomato, olive and capers.
For dessert, our attentive waiter suggests honey ice-cream rolled in nougat and draped in a hazelnut sauce. It's nothing short of divine and will have you wishing you had room for seconds.
If you're a traditionalist, try the Sardegna specialty - fried pastry with sweetened ricotta, honey and candied fruit.
Then round out the affair with a sip of limoncello, as Balla's flavours and light, open decor transport you to the stylish city of Milan.
BLACK by ezard
By night time you'll be ready for your next epicurean adventure so pull up a seat at BLACK (one hat).
You'll be leaving Italy and returning to Sydney for contemporary Australian fare by Teage Ezard - known for his two-hatted restaurant "ezard" and Gingerboy, both in Melbourne.
Go all out and opt for the degustation menu. The dish sizes are large and a little overwhelming, but it's perfect for men whose appetites won't be left wanting.
The organic farm egg, potato cream, iberico jamon, herb salad is full-flavoured.
The chilled Spencer Gulf prawns are large and served with a spicy roasted chilli dressing and fresh salad of coconut, mango, pomelo, basil and shallots.
Another highlight is the grain-fed wagyu with a buttered desiree puree and marrow and shallot sauce.
End the night with a cocktail or petit four.
Balla and BLACK will keep you satisfied on your first day at The Star, but why not extend the indulgence by taking something sweet away with you?
Before you check out of The Star's boutique hotel The Darling, pop on over to the Cafe Court for some Zumbarons - those ever-so-pleasing creations by Sydney patissier Adriano Zumbo.
As always, Zumbo's macarons are in an array of flavours. The pink lamington is delicious, the green apple spot on, and the lemon meringue creamy.
There's even one for a wintry day - cinnamon and nutmeg, the perfect accompaniment to a hot chocolate.
IF YOU GO
GETTING THERE: The Star is at 80 Pyrmont Street, Pyrmont. It's an easy 10-minute stroll from the CBD side of Darling Harbour.
STAYING THERE: The Darling at The Star is one of Sydney's most stylish hotels, close to the city centre and major tourist attractions.
It is a five-star boutique hotel with modern features and a deluxe day spa. For reservations, call 1800 800 830.
PLAYING THERE: To make a booking at Balla call (02) 9657 9129 and for BLACK by ezard phone (02) 9657 9109.
For details about opening times and current menus, as well as room prices at The Darling, visit thedarling.com.au.
The Star is also home to David Chang's overwhelmingly popular Momofuku Seiobo, as well as Sokyo (in The Darling), with its own sake sommelier. For more on The Star, go to star.com.au.
The writer travelled as a guest of The Darling