Sunday Territorian 7 Mar 2021
Sunday Territorian; NewspaperNT
Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.
News Corp Australia
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News Corp Australia
42 ESCAPE SUNDAY MARCH 7 2021 NTNE01Z01MA - V1 months into 2021 and new ideas are flourishing. Top of the list is Scott Picketts CBD bistro Chancery Lane, and three-level Farmers Daughters, bringing the best Gippsland produce to the city. Brunswick Easts Waxflower brings food and tunes and Port Melbournes Dakota is a seafood star. As cafes, bars and restaurants embrace COVIDS streetside dining, new openings are a tribute to the citys amazing resilience. Dont miss: After the inevitable 2020 hiatus, the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival is back with three festivals across the year, kicking off with the Worlds Longest Lunch on March 12. stylish Fleet in Brunswick Heads, Newrybar stalwart Harvest or the team behind The Farm. Hotels are getting in on the act too, with Raes on Wategos a celeb fave. Dont miss: After wowing diners at Halcyon Houses fine-diner Paper Daisy, Ben Devlin opened Pipit in Pottsville with a bold wood-fired menu of Northern Rivers produce. BACK WITH A BANG Melbournes hospitality folks may have been smashed by COVID-19 last year, despite some notable innovators, but no one can crush the citys creative culinary force. Two Forests perfect cherries, avocados, honey, chestnuts, marron, award-winning cool climate wines and more. Follow their example and join a food and farm tour, or drive the six-day South West Foodie Road Trip, stopping at farm gates, cellar doors and markets along the way. In December, feast on fruit then try your luck in a pit-spitting competition at the Manjimup Cherry Festival. Dont miss: The annual Truffle Kerfuffle (June 25-27) is your chance to hunt for Perigord truffles with the hounds, attend a masterclass and feast on fungi. REGIONAL DINING HOTSPOT Foraging and farming, brewers and beekeepers NSWs Central West has a reputation for farm-to-plate dining that makes the most of its agricultural bounty and charming towns. Seasonal festivals are a highlight think Oberons Field to Forest (April) and Forbes Grazing Down the Lachlan (September) and small group tours offer hands-on experiences meeting farmers and producers. Dont miss: The monthly Orange Farmers Market for a snapshot of the best of the region. ORGANIC, VEGAN, LOCAL, LAID-BACK Whether youre a surfer or a celebrity, the common denominator in NSWs Northern Rivers is the inspired quality of the food, from laid-back sushi at hinterland cafe Doma to tacos and tequila at Chupacabra. Excellent local produce (and producers), and a culture of healthy, delicious eating is the seam that runs through the dining culture from postswim snacking to serious dining. Think the Dreaming about travel can give youmore than itchy feet. It can also makeyour mouth water. Swipe through your old travel photos have you spotted a Thai pineapple, Spanish tapas, or a barbecue feast in Texas? Whatever your travel memories, food will have played a part. Whether youre on a pilgrimage to experience the best cuisine or just want to take a deep dive into a local culture, you dont have to travel overseas to experience incredible food moments. Australia has vast geographical and cultural diversity, beautiful produce and a wealth of culinary talent. Where will you be eating next? FOOD WITH A VIEW The Mornington Peninsula in Victoria is proof that you dont need a resident Hemsworth to be the hottest regional food and wine destination in Australia. Theres enough good looks in the sweeping ocean and vineyard views, and on the plate, to justify the title. The fine-dining competition is intense Pt Leo Estates Laura, Jackalopes Doot Doot Doot and Port Phillip Estate are just three of many, but the mid-range relaxed eating is also top-notch, from Merricks General Store to Foxeys Hangout, where you can enjoy excellent wine and share plates from the deck. Breweries and distilleries, food stores, farm gates and the farmers market keep the options flowing. Dont miss: At fine-diner Laura at Pt Leo Estate chef Phil Wood (late of Rockpool) kicks goals with his skilful modern menu informed by classic technique. NEW KID ON THE BLOCK Brisbane has been kicking serious goals in the food stakes and its time the rest of the country took notice. From seriously stylish hotels with bars and restaurants to match think The Caliles Ada Lane dining precinct to inner-city hot spots and riverside dining, Brisbanes urban renewal has ushered in a new wave of must-dine and drink experiences including new riverside openings Ottos new laid-back Italian trattoria, the riverside Otto Osteria, and seafood-powered La Costa Restaurant in Fortitude Valley. Dont miss: Agnes, the much-anticipated new restaurant from gun chef Ben Williamson. ITALY AND APPLES The Granite Belts 50-plus wineries produce HUNGRY FOR A HOLIDAY? J U S T I N E C O S T I G A N WHEN COOL CAFES, FINE DINING AND FARMERS MARKETS MATTER MOST, JUSTINE COSTIGAN HAS AUSTRALIAS HOTTEST HOLIDAY SPOTS FOR YOU NEW MOUNTAIN BREWS North-eastern Victoria has the spirits bug, with a raft of craft distilleries popping up throughout the alpine region. Some companies have expanded: Evertons Glenbosch added spirits to its wine production (two craft gins the original and a rooibos) and Billsons brewery in Beechworth now makes gin and vodka, too. Others focus exclusively on the still: Barking Owl Distilling Co. in Wooragee offers small-batch vodka, gin and liqueurs. Theres more to come this month rye whisky and gin specialists Backwoods Distilling Company opens a distillery door in Yackandandah. Dont miss: Reed and Co. Distillery in Bright has its own cocktail bar and elegant bottled cocktails to go alongside a red gumpowered menu. HOMEGROWN IN THE HUON From farmers markets and farm gates selling stone fruits and apples to restaurants featuring almost exclusively Huon produce, Australias southernmost food destination just outside Hobart has mastered the art of homegrown hospitality. Food experiences here are firmly linked to the land sign up for a Fat Pig Farm workshop and Friday Feast, take a class at The Farmhouse Kitchen Cooking School, or drop into Geevestons Harvest and Light for a housemade pickle and cheese platter. Dont miss: The Home Hill cellar door or Willie Smith Apple Shed, where the menu matches cider with superb Huon salmon. FABULOUS FOOD BOWL Western Australias chefs love the Southern some of Queenslands best drops, including many little-known varieties. Its Northern Tablelands elevation offers spectacular views across apple-growing and farming country, still tended by many of the Italian post-war migrants who brought their rich food culture (and recipes) with them. Its another good reason to fill your boot with their excellent farm-gate fare. Dont miss: A sunset wine tasting or eating apple pie Suttons Farm Cafe in Stanthorpe stuffs every groaning pie with 24 apples. TASTE OF ASIA Palm trees and pineapples, the aroma of ginger its easy to see why Queenslands Sunshine Coast has a culinary connection to South-East Asia. Dive in with a cooking class at Red Hot Chilli Pepper or learn (and dine) at acclaimed Spirit House, and The Tamarind. Book a table at hip Rice Boi or Embassy XO, or DIY using the abundant locally grown Asian produce and Mooloolaba seafood. Explore more via the year-round Noosa Food and Drink events or the annual Sunshine Coast Asian Food Festival (28 Feb) at Spicers Tamarind Retreat. Dont miss: Hip Sum Yung Guys serving a pan-Asian menu beachside. EXPLORE BUSH FOODS Great food experiences in the Red Centre start on foot, with guided walks exploring Anangu food culture at Ayers Rock Resort and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park: Its the best preparation for your desert dining experiences. Youll find native ingredients featured at the exclusive Longitude 131 and throughout the resort - the new Tali Wiru menu features green ants, quandongs, muntries and more. In Alice Springs head for Todd Mall and the local markets. Dont miss: The spectacular Parrtjima light festival (April 9-18) and its bush food experiences. MASTERS OF WINE (AND FOOD) There are two icons in South Australias Barossa Valley its big, bold shiraz, and Maggie Beer. Both symbolise an impressive food and wine culture, a legacy of the mid19th century English and German settlers and their love of wine, beer, sausage, pickles and cheese. Stock up at the weekly Barossa Farmers Market, local farm gates, and produce stores . Excellent cellar door dining offerings abound but Fino at Seppeltsfield and Appellation at The Louise are standouts. Dont miss: The biennial Barossa Vintage Festival (April 14-18), South Australias largest regional festival. SLEEP WHERE YOU EAT 1 If you love the best food and wine, why not double the pleasure with an overnight stay? At Dan Hunters Brae in Birregurra, Victoria, the eco-luxe digs come with in-room breakfast of more goodies from the Brae kitchen, plus a turntable and wine cabinet for post-lunch relaxation. 2 Only 90 minutes drive north of Sydney, Bells at Killcare serves Mediterranean fare at Sean Connollys The Wild Flower Bar & Dining. Follow it up with a beach walk, day spa, or pool time before retiring to your private villa. 3 For a gourmet getaway, the faithfully rebuilt historic Mount Lofty House in the Adelaide Hills, South Australia, offers fine dining in Hardys Verandah Restaurant (ask to see the wine cellar) and superb views from its luxurious rooms and cottages. MELISSA LEONGS TOP 4 FOOD PILGRIMAGES Tathra oysters, NSW South Coast Gary and Jo Rodely produce some of Australias most perfect rock oysters. On Nelson Lake in the middle of pristine Mimosa Rocks National Park on the NSW South Coast, the location of their award-winning oyster lease is secret, but their cellar door is not. Swing on by for a couple of dozen beauties. tathraoysters.com.au Grandvewe Cheeses, Tas This little organic sheep dairy overlooks the southern tip of Bruny Island, and produces Euro-centric expressions of the worlds great sheep cheeses. Its also home to the sheepwhey vodka that has taken the worlds bars by storm, Hartshorn Distillery. grandvewe.com.au Rapid Creek Market, NT Outside Indonesia or Malaysia, these produce markets tout some of the most lush tropical produce youve ever seen. From kaffir lime leaves the length of your arm to green papayas for your som tum. Get here early for first dibs. rapidcreekmarkets.com.au Bennelong Restaurant, NSW The Sydney Opera House is one of the great Australian landmarks. The fact chef Peter Gilmores inspired cuisine happens to be found here just makes it a more compelling reason to visit. Sitting beneath the sails eating a celebration of Australian produce and culinary talent is a privilege. bennelong.com.au