The mere mention of Tassie’s epic food and wine scene sends many into a salivating spin. From freshly-shucked oysters to the best cuts of angus steak in the country, it’s no wonder an incredible amount of Aussies have Tasmania in their sights as their next holiday destination.
If you’re thinking of visiting Australia’s food bowl, it pays to dive in with a little insider knowledge. Here are 10 must-do winter experiences that will take you from hip city eateries to a micro-brewery in a paddock and a 19th-century school house for a cooking class.
At Two Metre Tall, they grow their own beer-fed black angus beef and sell the cuts over the farm bar so you can throw them on the open grill while you sit in the paddock. Fermented beer is pumped by hand and this micro-brewery is only a short 40-minute drive from the heart of Hobart.
The restaurant is set up in a 1920s Ford showroom and the kitchen is led by the newly arrived Analiese Gregory, who dives for her own abalone and sea urchin. Analiese and the team work right before your eyes as you sit at the polished concrete bar. The food is mostly wood-roasted and the menu is farm and ocean-to-table inspired.
Since 2008 the Agrarian Kitchen has been synonymous with homegrown paddock-to-plate cooking. What’s new is the Agrarian Kitchen Eatery in New Norfolk set up in Willow Court (an old psychiatric hospital).
The eatery serves food picked little more than 200 metres away at the Derwent Valley Community garden, other food is sourced from local producers and the Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School located not too far away in Lachlan. Like the cooking school, the food you eat on the day is dependent on what has been gathered that morning.
You can buy oysters at the stunning Bruny Island location live, shucked or unshucked. Try an oyster Bloody Mary at the Oyster Bar and experience the wonder of what may be Australia’s first and only oyster drive-thru.
Grandvewe Cheese started as a vineyard, but the sheep designed to keep the grass down actually ate the vines – so they made sheep cheese instead. Then the question was, ‘what to do with the waste from the cheese?’ Make vodka of course! Ryan Hartshorn uses the discarded whey from the cheesery to make Australia’s first sheep whey vodka.
Through her gourmet retreat, Wendy Jubb Stoney shares her life on Flinders Island, creating meals from Flinders Island produce and offering tuition that draws on her background of cooking with some of Australia’s best chefs. The retreat is located at Cooma House on six hectares of sculptured bushland with private tracks, views and wildlife at Badger Corner on the southern end of Flinders Island.
Matthew Evans (star of SBS’s Gourmet Farmer) holds a long lunch every Friday at his farm near Cygnet in the Huon Valley. He serves up farm comfort food like house-churned butter, slow-cooked brisket and quince and apple cobbler with soured cream custard.
The kitchen team at this Launceston bar and restaurant works closely with small producers to ensure nearly all of the produce used is locally sourced, whether it be from the family farm or surrounding businesses. Enjoy beautiful dishes such as saffron tortellini, pan seared scallops, and a duo of duck salad.
Timbre Kitchen operates on the Velo Wines property in the Tamar Valley region and is owned and run by Tasmanian-born couple, Matt Adams and Shannon Bushby. Here, Matt creates a constantly changing menu that takes its cues from the season and the availability of fresh produce. In fact, much of Matt’s menu is made up of produce that is grown by the regular members of the community, with the bulk of the menu shaped around the wood oven that produces smoky flavours that complement Velo’s wines.
Josef Chromy fled his war-torn Czech village in 1950 at just 19 years old, arriving penniless in Australia. At the ripe age of 76, he opened Josef Chromy Wines and today is one of Tasmania’s most esteemed vintners. During his ‘Art of Sparkling’ wine tour, you can learn how to disgorge a bottle of sparkling wine and mix your very own bottle of wine to taste. Taste wine from the vats at various stages of their production and watch the winemaker disgorge the yeast that has settled on the bottom of the sparkling wine.