Canberra’s new cloak of cool is extending past the city boundaries. Case in point The Poacher’s Way trail showcases the best of food, drink and artisan wares, number 32 on Australian Traveller’s ‘100 amazing places you haven’t been to yet‘. Nominated by: Lorraine Elliott, food blogger and author.

Canberra might be loudly shrugging off its reputation for daggyness, but in the towns of the city’s outskirts, a similar sort of revolution has been quietly happening for yonks, says Lorraine Elliott.

“The Poacher’s Way trail is an initiative started by one local, designed to show that revolution,” she explains, “and it’s grown to include all the area’s best stop-offs – everything from historical pubs, artisan bakeries and unique wood-fired ceramics to sustainable spas.”

Take Murrumbateman winery, Clonakilla, says Elliott. “They’re doing the most amazing things – each year, queues form just to buy a single bottle of their legendary shiraz viognier,” she says. “It’s previously been tipped as ‘one of the most important advances in the development of Australian shiraz since the release of 1952 Penfolds Grange Hermitage’.”

Meanwhile, nearby Poachers Pantry is the ultimate stop for gourmet bowerbirds – “they have the most divine range of smoked goods, as well as a great little on-site restaurant.”

There are plenty of other worthwhile offerings, she adds – “like the small pub in Gundaroo, which was built in 1872 and is worth a visit for a look at the lovingly restored roof alone, and Grazing, one of the most well-loved restaurants of the area, which uses a lot of local food,” but the list is just too long to fit here.

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