Eat delicious food and sip beautiful wine at one of these weekend getaways. By Alissa Jenkins
EPICUREAN DELIGHTS, TAS
Where? // Red Feather Inn Cooking School is in Hadspen, 15 minutes from central Launceston and 200km north of Hobart.
Why? // Adding to the area’s existing foodie delights, cooking classes include smoking and curing meat, artisan bread making, food styling and photography, pastry making, Christmas feasts and more. There are also several well-known wineries and foodie stop-offs nearby.
How much? // Class and accommodation packages at the Red Feather Inn from $395 per person, twin share.
FARMS, WINERIES, ORCHARDS AND FOOD, NSW
Where? The Hawkesbury Harvest Farm Gate Trail meanders alongside the Hawkesbury River, taking in townships such as Wisemans Ferry and Windsor before heading into the Blue Mountains through Kurrajong and Bilpin. It’s about an hour’s drive north-west of Sydney.
Why? Farms, wineries, orchards and award-winning restaurants are all there on this picturesque gourmet food trail. Better still, it’s a beautiful drive. Must-do stop-offs include Fords Farm, Watkins Orchard, Riverview Produce, Jubilee Vineyard Estate, Kookootonga Chestnut and Walnut Farm, Shield’s Orchard, Bilpin Springs Orchard and the Apple Bar.
How much? Rest your head (not to mention your stomach) at Loxley on Bellbird Hill from $230 per night twin share, including breakfast.
GOURMET GRANITE BELT, QLD
Where? // The Granite Belt encompasses several towns around Stanthorpe, about 300km south-west of Brisbane.
Why? //Australia’s newest food trail produces all kinds of gourmet delights: cheese, chutney, chocolate… and wine. Stop for fresh jams, chutneys and baked goods at The Bramble Patch in Glen Aplin, Sutton’s Juice Factory and Cidery in Thulimbah and Heavenly Chocolates in Wyberba. There’s the Granite Belt Dairy for cheese straight from pasture to the platter. Stay in Stanthorpe’s Azjure Studio Retreat’s luxe studios, each with a log fire, king-size bed and reclining spa bath for two. The region’s two leading restaurants, Shiraz and Vineyard Café, are within a two-minute drive.
How much? // From $320 per night, twin share.
BREWERIES, BAKERIES AND ITALIAN COOKING CLASSES, VIC
Where? // The foodie township of Bright, 320km north-east of Melbourne.
Why? // Beautiful food in equally stunning surroundings – and the newly established High Country Brewery Trail (further details on the Drinks page, page 26). Renowned chef Patrizia Simone will also open a local cooking school from October this year, across the road from her hatted Simone’s Restaurant.
How much? // Patrizia Simone cooking class from $120 per person; accommodation at Bright on Track from $145 per night.