Rookie Eatery

4.5
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286 reviews
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$41 to $100
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Australian
Rookie Eatery offers diners contemporary Australian cuisine in a casual context. A produce-driven menu centres on modern Australian food, as the kitchen serves an eclectic mix of local ingredients with multicultural influences. At Rookie, we believe that ‘Australian cuisine’ is a multicultural phenomenon that exists nowhere else in the world and so we aim to provide a contemporary interpretation with the local ingredients on offer. The result is a diverse inspiration of eastern and western cultures brought together with fragrant and fresh flavours. An on-site herb garden provides the kitchen with a range of indigenous and introduced herb species, whilst a commitment to strong supplier relationships sees the South Coast’s best produce showcased.
What 286 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
Food
4.6
Service
4.3
Ambience
4.3
Value
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Our dinner experience was so memorable. The staff are so delightful (thanks Nicole and Nathan). The chefs were super accommodating to our dietary requests and the food was exceptional. Every single thing we ate was amazing and every mouthful was a flavour explosion in our mouths. Thanks for a super enjoyable experience. We’ll be back again soon! 🙂

s
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 5 December 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Rookie is our favourite restaurant in Wollongong. We don’t get to do date night often but when we do we always head to Rookie. Change of menu this visit for the vegan feed me menu and it didn’t disappoint one bit.

GW
1 review
Dined on 29 November 2019
Overall3Food5Service2Ambience3

Was slightly disappointed with the service on the second sitting, obviously the staff had been worked hard during the first sitting and had lost their motivation/energy.
Room temperature and noise was at elevated levels which reduced the ambience of the occasion.

L
1 review
Dined on 23 November 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

First time at rookie eatery! Couldn’t fault the food, it was an amazing experience and will definitely go back.

J
1 review
Dined on 15 November 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience3

Service was amazing, great food and drink selection. We had a tasting menu and everything was delicious! Portion sizes could be slightly bigger, but overall was very nice.

AD
1 review
Dined on 9 November 2019
Overall3Food4Service2Ambience5

The food was decent, get the side of beans with your steak.
The staff were swepped off their feet. You can see they are trying to compete with Caveau across the road by explaining each dish + having strong tasting food, however it’s such a small space with lots of people and hard surfaces means that sound is amplified, the food has strong taste however this is mostly achieved with spices rather than delicate flavours and the waitress we had was not particularly personable (bordering obtuse).
Would I go back, yes. However I wouldn’t necessarily bring my family or wife for a pleasant meal unless we did takeaway and they didn’t mind the spice. Perhaps with friends who want to try something different.
You may be paying for the food, not necessarily an experience.
I’m retrospect, perhaps the waitress wasn’t impressed that I ordered for my wife, could have been a simple gender / equality thing. We will never know.
3.45stars

DO
1 review
Dined on 9 November 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

From a warm greeting as we walked in, to a farewell as we left, the whole experience was excellent. Super-professional service came from knowledgeable staff with utmost courtesy. The menu was mouth-watering and the food was delicious. The chef(s) did a fantastic job providing such beautiful food. This is a licensed restaurant with a wide range of top-quality beverages to choose from we chose a 2017 Rusden GSM which matched our food choices perfectly. We decided on one of the degustation menus and were delighted with our choice. We had several courses which had respectable pauses in between which was very welcome, allowing conversation to flourish. We were never rushed and did not feel rushed, only made to feel welcome. This is a very special restaurant which we would highly recommend and will revisit soon.

KB
Brisbane / QLD
1 review
Dined on 8 November 2019
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience4

Food was amazing! The table waitresses were very helpful and friendly. Only downside was we all felt the food came out too quickly.. not enough time to savour flavours.. in fact last dish came out before we’d finished previous one! But overall terrific.

HP
1 review
Dined on 26 October 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We had the vegetarian degustation menu and it was fantastic. Very friendly staff and food came out quickly

RG
1 review
Dined on 25 October 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Food was amazing, I highly recommend the feed me menu, as you get to try a selection of dishes. They have a good selection of wine, beer and spirits. I’ll be back again.

OT
1 review
Dined on 24 October 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Insane food and outstanding service! We were in a rush and but still wanted the set menu, and they catered to our needs really well.

JP
1 review
Dined on 12 October 2019
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience4

Fantastic food!! Markup on the wine we purchased was a bit much but overall we loved our first time there.

RK
1 review
Dined on 9 October 2019
Overall1Food1Service4Ambience4

Previous visits to rookie have been delightful, but this visit involved grease and fat on a scale that cannot be fathomed. The food lacked freshness, the flavours were flat, the meat could have been resuscitated by a good vet, and the fact most of our dishes were returned uneaten seemed to go unnoticed by the staff. A disappointing way to celebrate my mother’s birthday this year indeed.

S
Canberra / ACT
1 review
Dined on 26 September 2019
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience5

Lovely old building provides great atmosphere. Friendly greeting by servers, drinks orders taken straight away. We had the feed me menu. Some fantastic flavours and creative dishes. I’ve been to Rookie three times now, each time ordering the feed me menu, and each time I have had the kingfish ceviche, duck that I wasn’t a massive fan of, and a hugely rich beef dish at the end. The kingfish dish is delicious but once you have eaten it there is no element of surprise the next time. Love to see them mix it up a little. Having said that, it’s a great place with excellent food and good options for wine, and we will definitely be back again.

CC
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 25 September 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We went to Rookies on Wednesday evening, first time for me but my husband went a few months earlier.
It was amazing, the food had so much flavour. delicious in every way
What impressed us was that the waitress remembered my husband from a few months ago.

DP
London
4 reviews
Dined on 13 September 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We had the feed me menu number 2 and the flavour combinations was just fabulous , delicate and precise . All of our group of 4 loved it . We even stretched out and shred some additional desserts . The atmosphere is lovely and the service was friendly and efficient . All in All a terrific lunch

AG
1 review
Dined on 11 September 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Beautiful food, great service. Not a cheap night out though.

H
1 review
Dined on 7 September 2019
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience2

Food was great! Our waiter was great, was a little cramped and noisy. Had to wait to get waiters attention a few times and the lock on the male bathroom was broken but still a great night!

GA
1 review
Dined on 22 August 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Wonderful service! Made our night extra special. We’ll be back.

MM
1 review
Dined on 17 August 2019
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience5

Would have been better if we could have had out own wine on a Saturday night.

S
1 review
Dined on 10 August 2019
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Amazing food! The wait staff could smile a bit more but none the less the service was good. Would definitely go back. Best restaurant in Wollongong!

T
1 review
Dined on 10 August 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Food was insanely good. Best food i've had in Wollongong. And certainly the best i've had anywhere for a while. Couldn't stop thinking about it after!

AP
1 review
Dined on 8 August 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Fantastic food - really different and delicious and the service was great 😊

DT
1 review
Dined on 27 July 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing food. Great service. Will definitely recommend to friends

OT
1 review
Dined on 26 July 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

The most wonderful experience. The flavour combinations were amazing. Quantise just right and the service impeccable.
We will return many many times.

DA
1 review
Dined on 13 July 2019
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience3

Excellent food, great service. Could do with fewer tables as we were crammed in a bit. Also, the wine list needs serious attention. For a restaurant of this standard and with these prices they need a far better selection of quality wines. The list just wasn't up to standard

JU
2 reviews
Dined on 12 July 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Food & service were outstanding, thank you Rookie for a wonderful day

OT
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 10 July 2019
Overall3Food4Service2Ambience2

We had a beautiful range of dishes, although the vegetarian 'feed me' menu could do with a little more variety as two of the dishes highlighted sweet potato as a main ingredient. All the dishes were well cooked and beautifully presented. Unfortunately the service was a bit patchy: the main host was lovely, welcoming and warm as well being very knowledgable about the dishes; the other waitress on the evening was less welcoming and at times was a little too intrusive - hurrying to empty the bottle of wine that we had ordered and leaning across us to clear the plates. The minimalist decor is stylish but on a winter's night rather cold especially as the heating was turned off early. This is the second time that I have been to Rookie and have loved the food each time but this time it wasn't quite such a stand out meal.

CZ
Sydney / NSW
2 reviews
Dined on 6 July 2019
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience5

food lived up to its reputation - absolutely stunning!
the only criticism was having a table that was so far into the hallway the front door almost clopped one of our party each time it opened - we asked to move to another table, but after being told not possible we moved the table a foot further into the dining room (waiter wasnt too happy about that, and i was still constantly closing the front door for patrons who couldnt be bothered). we'll go back again but only on the condition we are not seated there - restaurant should remove that table all together

FS
Sydney / NSW
2 reviews
Dined on 3 July 2019
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Consistently wonderful food every time, Rookie never disappoints,

SM
1 review
Dined on 29 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The food was amazing- definitely a great place to celebrate our 1 year anniversary xo

MG
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 28 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The service was excellent even though it seemed busy. The food is amazing and the price seems like I am getting the bargain.

V
1 review
Dined on 22 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious food! There was so much of it and we got the $69 feed me menu. Staff are lovely - it really makes the dining experience just wonderful when you have cheerful, attentive staff. Looking forward to returning soon.

RM
1 review
Dined on 19 June 2019
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

well presented dishes, duck breast perfectly cooked a stand out

MM
Sydney / NSW
3 reviews
Dined on 15 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Great atmosphere and service. The food was amazing and a great place to take my daughter who was visiting from interstate. Couldn’t fault a thing!

R
1 review
Dined on 15 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

We have now been to Rookies 3 times and we have never been disappointed. We had the Large Feed Me offering this last time and all of the dishes were 'to die for!' We did take the early siting - from 6pm - and if I had one criticism it would be that the 1st few courses came out a little too quick. however we will be back again very shortly and I`m already looking forward to it - Excellent meal!

OT
1 review
Dined on 14 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing service . Amazing food ! Will definitely return.

PU
1 review
Dined on 13 June 2019
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience3

The quality of the food was excellent however I thought the need for sides to give a satisfying full feeling and there only being 2 sides available, poor, however the service was excellent and both the manager and wait staff were very attentive

LS
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 13 June 2019
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

It was my first time eating at Rookie and my god!! The food and service was something else. Our waitress was very helpful in educating me about some of the ingredients on their menu and always made sure that our food was good. 100% 10/10 would definitely recommend to anyone looking for a flavourful Australian culinary journey. :)

M
1 review
Dined on 8 June 2019
Overall3Food3Service4Ambience2

All the 3 stars I gave are actually 3 and a half stars, as I think an extra half is necessary. Some really nice flavours in the food. Few things I could nit pick but an overall nice time at Rookie.