City of Churches, State of Wine-o’s

Sun on the vines

So we’re headed to Adelaide. City of a thousand churches, and capital city of the state which is home to some of the finest wine producing areas in the world.

So I’ve been hitting up every person I can think of for tips about good restaurants in the city, as well as any memorable winery experiences they’ve had when visiting areas like the Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, and Adelaide Hills.

So far on the list of restaurants is :

  • Good Life Organic Pizza
  • Apothecary
  • Melting Pot
  • Bridgewater Mill

and wineries:

  • Glaeztner
  • Rockfords
  • D’Arenburg
  • Nepenthe

and too many more to list…

So for the readers of this blog who may have spent some time and had some great food and wine in South Australia, please drop me a comment or email with your suggestions. We’ll be there for roughly a week, so I doubt we’ll have time to do all the things even on this list, but where there’s a will there’s a way.

Look forward to a round up of the more memorable moments when we get back !

11 thoughts on “City of Churches, State of Wine-o’s”

  1. Haigh’s Chocolates – in fact I’ll pay good money to have them brought back to Perth – and see if you can convince them to open a WA branch – right near the new Perth Underground ought to do just fine. . .

    Chocolat on Rundle Street (or the airport) is a great place for dessert.

    D’arenburg is a good stop for the wine – make sure you try the ‘Custodian’ Grenache.

    Simply Coffee sounds like a good spot too.

  2. Matt,

    My South Australian colleague tells me that Penny’s Hill winery is supposed to be pretty good.

    He also says Adelaide is a bustling metropolis with a thriving nightlife and vibrant pulse, so take his advice with a grain of salt…

  3. Hi Matt

    We went to the organic Pizzeria last time we went to Adelaide and had a fab meal.

    The food markets are great, central city I think. Very nice produce in Adelaide. Enjoy.


  4. Heya Matt,

    Your list looks impressive, just a couple of pointers, if you don’t me being forward…

    Apothecary (Hindley St, west end) – great little bar. Not really a dining place. Wines selection is pretty good, & cocktails are lovely. Good place to start the night off lounging in the cellar. If you want to buy from a great selection of wines try East End Cellars… I think Fri is wine tasting night.

    However if you are down the west end try the fantastic new Mesa Lunga (corner Gouger and Morphett Streets, near the markets). Fantastic tapas, sexy luxe decor, hot tunes with DJ playing Fri and Sat nights… Chill and not too crazy, so you’ll still feel like you’re having a meal and not competing with people who are just drinking.

    Melting Pot is fantastic – I used to work there and the food is still outstanding even more so than Bridgewater Mill. Melting Pot is a small restaurant seats 37 pax max and you will get the attention you want withouth being snooty. The degustation (with or without wine matches) is always the best way to try everything on that menu – and you will want to try everything!

    Bridgewater Mill used to be awesome until Lion Nathan bought it this year. Now Le Tu Thai (head chef) has been restricted severely in his craft as he is no longer ‘allowed’ to produce the boundary pushing food he is reknowned for. For the money you spend – you may as well go and check out Cheong Liew’s food.

    Cheong works at The Grange in the Hilton (Victoria Square). He is an institution and while hotel dining is never my cup of tea, his food really speaks for itself. As a side note if you are into scandinavian style furniture and want to take a break from eating, Cheong’s brother has a little furniture shop just out of the city, (Khai Liew 164-166 Magill Road, Norwood).

    Quick cheap eats:

    Amalfi Pizzeria, right in the buzzing centre of the east end on Frome Road, just off Rundle Street. Not quite home cooked but definitely not mass produced Italian fare. Must make a booking for Thur-Sat nights as they get busy!!

    China Town (Gouger Street): anywhere. though be mindful of the three Chows (Ying Chow, T Chow and Ky Chows) they all use excessive amounts of MSG. Go to East Taste if you want Chinese. However Mandarin House (Gouger Street), has the best dumplings and great for cheap eat. Ask for the pan fried pork dumplings and make sure you book if you head in for dinner.

    The Central Markets: fantastic, fresh produce. Only Melbourne produce compares here if not on par. A little cafe you must try is Lucias, just ask anyone and they will tell you how to get there.

    Place to shop for gourmet stuff (like Simon Johnson) go to Bottega Rotolo (Stephens Terrace, Norwood). They have a gorgeous and large cheese room.

    Now for coffee… it used to be any of the Cibo espressos, but now the chain/franchise is so large that quality is not the same. Having said that the one in the Central Markets region is in my opinion the best. Their gelati is not bad too.

    I think that’s enough from me now… Hope you enjoy Adelaide.

  5. Awesome!!! After going to the Hunter Valley for a weekend, I have gotten the bug for wine country everywhere. I can’t wait to see what you got up to!!

  6. Grendel: We happened upon a shop called Chocolat in Unley, which seemed nice, but not being a chocolate fiend, didn’t do much for me. Had a coffee at Cibo and was pleasanltly surprised by it. Perhaps chain coffee stores can be good ?

    Kam: Good call on Good Life Organic Pizzeria, we actually went to the one in Glenelg last night and it was fantastic. We had a salami pizza with bocconcini, a duck and shitake mushroom pizza and a roast vege pizza which were all great.

    Brad: Your mate might be onto something. We did a McLaren Vale tour today and stopped by Penny’s Hill and Mr Riggs along with Coriole, Chapel Hill, and D’Arenburg. We also wanted to check out Paxton which has a really nice biodynamic Shiraz Cabernet, but they were closed. As for Adelaide being a bustling metropolis, the jury is definitely out… but as long as the food stays good I’ll be happy.

    Zams: Thanks for all the tips. We walked past Melting Pot while we were in Unley, and also saw Melt next door, which we assume is the little brother tapas bar to it ? Hoping to make it to either one on Friday or Saturday night.

    I saw that the Bridgewater Mill is owned by Lion Nathan now, and it doesn’t really sit well… we’re heading up into the hill tomorrow though, so if we’re able to make it in we’ll go for a look.

    Gouger St seems like the place to go for chinese and other ethnic kinda dining, so we will hopefully be able to check out the markets and that area at some point too.

    Not sure if we’re budgeted to dine at the Hilton this time around, but thanks for the tip. I’d love to put eating at Cheong Liew’s place on my list of accomplisments, but I’m not sure it’s going to happen. Thanks for all your great tips though, I just hope we can make it to most of them :)

    JenJen: Me too ! Wine country is my kinda country. We had a great day in McLaren Vale today, sampling the local delicacies of Grenache blends, and tomorrow we’re heading to Adelaide Hills, then Friday Barossa ! Just as long as I can fit all this bloody wine in my suitcase… :)

  7. I have to agree with her too… coming up soon, you’ll see the result of some of these suggestions… We had a great time in Adelaide… if only a little short.

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