THOUSANDS dragged themselves from bed and made their way to Bondi Beach in the dark to watch the sun rise to the sounds of a 20-piece orchestra.
Yesterday's Breakfast on Bondi started at 5.45am with ''a little bit of cello and didge at dawn'', as the MC Joanna Savill, put it.
It was easy to spot a bunch of six beachy locals who, in true Bondi style, were eating homemade banana bread off a waxed surfboard.
The group had arrived as the breakfast was starting, though Jill Peel, who was particularly keen, had got up at 3am despite living just a few minutes away.
''I was just so excited and then I kept looking to see if it was raining,'' she said. And, in the wee hours it was doing just that. ''It was chucking down about half three.''
But the rain didn't linger and the forecast early morning showers came to nothing.
Ms Peel, a ''massive Bill Granger fan'', was there primarily to get a glimpse of the celebrity chef.
''[His restaurants] were probably one of the reasons we came to Sydney," she said.
Granger and fellow chef Pete Evans wandered around the beach checking out the enviable picnic spreads for the breakfast competition. One of the winners impressed Evans with pumpkin bread, which he described jokingly as ''yeast free, sugar free, everything free … Actually it shouldn't even exist.''
Edy Reid and her friends from the northern beaches had baked scones and mini quiches for their spread, though the 23-year-old was not very impressed with the music.
''The opera's killing me,'' she laughed. ''It's just too early."
But Malesa White said her soon-to-be-born child disagreed.
'"He's having a bit of a boogie,'' she said, tapping her eight-month-pregnant belly.
Breakfast on Bondi was part of the Herald's month-long Crave Sydney International Food Festival. For more details visit cravesydney.com