If you are a Sydneysider, you will no doubt know that Sydney Festival starts today. We love the shows, the free concerts in the Domain and the Ferrython on Australia Day, but lately our favourite part about Sydney Festival is Festival Village in Hyde Park.

There is always something happening here and Family Week from 20th to 25th is a welcome addition. Last year, they even had a huge inflatable Stonehenge! However, our favourite part about Festival Village has to be Gelato Messina, and this year they have stepped it up a notch.

The Sydney food gods must have been listening, as two of my favourite food places (Messina and Porteno) have got together and formed Double Down Diner for this year’s festival with good ol’ southern American diner nosh.

Start your feast with Porteno’s rotating menu of fourteen crowd-pleasing diner classics, including philly cheese steak and Southern fried chicken with waffles, then move onto one of Messina’s eight mouthwatering concoctions. ‘Gelato burger’ anyone? It consists of milk chocolate gelato pattie layered with white chocolate cheese, passionfruit ‘mustard’ and raspberry ‘ketchup’, served in a warm brioche bun.

They are open 8th to 25th January, except Mondays, until late.