There was a time Darwin was my favorite, I think it has lost its luster. Yes it appeals to the independent rebel in me, and for that I will always enjoy a trip here. But after many trips I find that it is limiting if one is confined to the city.
There are pubs with decent food that lacks imagination. Pizza is always good and the Wyugra burger I had was above average. It is beef from pampered cows, then it was served on a French roll with a slice of bacon (think British or Canadian bacon for you American readers). But still a burger is a burger as much as I like them.
Seafood is plentiful but usually beyond my budget. Thinking that I might deserve a really good meal I stopped at a place advertised to be the best restaurant in the Northern Territory. Half a dozen oysters for $36, prepared in a Rockefeller type style. When a bowl of soup is almost $20 I move on.
There are ethnic places, Indian, Viet Nam, Thai, Turkish, and they are the best bets.
At night Darwin on Mitchell street is a party, and too decadent for me. The day-time comfortable Monsoons transforms into a wild place, with shows and contests that I could not be part of.
I like Darwin yet one tires of Darwin, even locals tell me that unless you have family and activities associated with them there is not a lot here except the party life. Not my cup of tea.