Gourmet Guide to South Australia
South Australia is a smorgasbord of gourmet delights – and we’ve created the ultimate bucket-list for foodies.
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Gourmet Guide to South Australia
South Australia's best restaurants
Smoke, steam and fire combine to create some of the most inventive dishes in Adelaide at Shobosho. This multi-award-winning fine-dining spot takes guests on a journey through Asian cuisine via a menu of yakitori, noodles, dumplings and bao, plus robata-grilled and spit-roasted meat. Specially commissioned kitchen equipment, including a customised yakitori pit, wood oven and hydraulic grill, ensure truly one-of-a-kind dishes you’ll be raving about for years to come. Our tip: don’t leave without trying the katsu pork sandwich.
Check out a list of Adelaide’s top restaurants and it’s a safe bet you’ll find Africola among them. Grab a seat by the bar with a view of the open kitchen and settle in for a night of hearty African fare and fantastic cocktails. A bBanana hHammock with spiced rum should get you in the spirit as you tuck into a tea sandwich with peri peri drippings, veggie-friendly ‘butter chicken’ pumpkin, and signature hummus with avocado tahini and roasted garlic. Africola is sure to get you out of your foodie comfort zone and trying delicious new dishes you won’t find elsewhere.
Fino Vino, Adelaide
Following the award-winning Fino Willunga and Fino at Seppeltsfield, Fino Vino is the latest offering from David Swain and Sharon Romeo. Their aim is to tell a regional South Australian story amid the bright lights of Adelaide city via a menu of produce-driven dishes. Supporting local producers and operating with a minimal waste philosophy, Swain and Romeo’s creations include southern bluefin tuna, charred tommy ruffs and braised short rib. Chic, rustic interiors create a laidback ambience that makes Fino Vino the perfect inner-city spot for unpretentious fine dining.
Hardy’s Verandah, Adelaide Hills
If you have one night for ‘something special’ still free on your trip, let this be it. Spectacular vistas, a divine menu and exceptional service combine in this true fine-dining experience. Located within the iconic Mount Lofty House, Hardy’s Verandah offers a three or seven-course chef-hatted degustation menu, which changes seasonally. Take a seat on the verandah of Arthur Hardy’s restored 1852 verandah and perhaps drink in the views with matching wines for each course, if you choose, or sample a saké from their collection.
Pike & Joyce, Adelaide Hills
Panoramic 180-degree views of Adelaide Hills set the scene for dining at Pike & Joyce. Founded by two South Australian families (the Pikes are long-established winemakers, while the Joyces are fifth-generation horticulturalists), this scenic gem is a culmination of local talent, great food and exquisite vines. Come for the lunch degustation menu or dine à la carte at dinner, enjoying Abrolhos Island scallops, Cape Grim rump and fresh bread with hand-churned butter. Hang around a little longer to make the most of that view – and the cool-climate wines – from the state-of-the-art tasting room.
Appellation at The Louise, Barossa
Nothing pairs better with Barossa dining than breathtaking vineyard views, which you’ll find in abundance at Appellation at The Louise restaurant. The degustation menu can be combined with matching Barossa wines and offers a taste of the region, boasting ingredients from the onsite kitchen garden, local growers and farmers. In fact, 85% of Chef Kyle John’s menu comes from the Barossa and South Australia, all bread is baked onsite and rainwater is collected, filtered and carbonated – this is wholesome fine dining at its very best.
The Atrium at Hentley Farm, Barossa
A discovery tasting menu and personal dining experience awaits at The Atrium, serving produce either growing wild in and around Greenock Creek, tended by chefs in the farm garden or from local farmers and backyard growers. Chef Clare Falzon’s relationship with the land and locals shines through in a menu of subtle flavours that let the produce do the talking. The Chefs Table experience for seven to 12 guests takes place over three leisurely hours and is best enjoyed with local wine pairings.
Vino Lokal, Barossa
Make like the locals and book a highly coveted table at ‘Vino Lokal’, which connects the Spanish word for wine with the German term for local. The restaurant’s unique name make’s its purpose clear; for this to be a great place for locals to enjoy food, wine and connect. A mouthwatering menu of delectable comfort food awaits, where you can choose to order a selection of dishes to share – or keep them all to yourself. Stop by the wine bar first and try one of 30 wines by the glass or more than 80 by the bottle. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, a signature burger with beetroot and horseradish mayo, southern fried chicken with red cabbage and apple slaw, or the selection of local cheeses with melba toast are sure to do the trick.
Slate Restaurant, Clare Valley
Part of Pikes Wines, Slate Restaurant is named after the 650-million-year-old slate stone that forms the bed of the surrounding vineyards. The menu is just as imbued with Clare Valley heritage, showcasing estate-grown wines and rich produce from in and around the region. Refreshingly unafraid to take risks with its modern Australian dishes, Slate is the kind of place that pairs Orroroo kangaroo with kohlrabi and Port Lincoln kingfish with fresh watermelon and pickled cucumber. Ask for the ‘Feed Me’ option, then sit back and relax while the friendly team serve three handpicked dishes (matched with Clare wines, if you wish).
Skillogalee Winery and Restaurant, Clare Valley
Starting small by offering casual bites to visitors in 1990, Skillogalee’s popular food soon warranted opening a full-scale restaurant. Take a seat inside or out on the veranda, where you can enjoy lunch overlooking the cottage garden. Dishes from around the world are recreated using local ingredients, adding that all-important South Australian flair. Share a charcuterie platter for two, enquire about the pasta of the day or tuck into flavourful Sri Lankan fish curry with ghee and fried shallot basmati rice.
Star of Greece, Fleurieu Peninsula
The location of this restaurant and kiosk is enough to make you add it to your ‘when-we-come-back’ hitlist. It’s a cult favourite, whether you sit outside on the kiosk deck, dine inside the restaurant or on the beach-facing deck, which has views that span the coastline. The restaurant focuses on modern Aussie cuisine, particularly fresh, local produce. The King George whiting and Kangaroo Island squid never come off the menu, but there’s also steak, daily specials, delicate entrées and more. The wine list and kids’ menu are fantastic, too.
Gather at Coriole, McLaren Vale
Much as the name suggests, Gather’s philosophy is centred on bringing people together over local, seasonal and sustainable food. The dishes served are a celebration of South Australia’s rich produce with a focus on ethically harvested ingredients and estate-grown Coriole wines. Chef Tom Tilbury likes to keep the menu dynamic to match the seasons, but house-baked bread, Coriole olive oil and dry-aged local beef are pretty much guaranteed. Stop by the cellar door after for a tasting of the estate’s exceptional wines.
Leonards Mill, Fleurieu Peninsula
Proudly South Australian through and through, Leonards Mill only sources from local growers and farmers. Animals are bought whole and utilised completely for a genuine low-waste, paddock-to-plate experience. Garnishes and veggies are grown in the permaculture kitchen garden and every single dish is made from scratch. This commendable commitment to local produce means the menu changes dependent on what’s on offer – but could include beef terrine with pickled vegetables, Cape Jervis fish and Myponga zucchini. If it’s not from South Australia, you won’t find it on the menu!
The Crafers Hotel, Adelaide Hills
Immerse yourself in local history at The Crafers Hotel, one of Adelaide’s first pubs (established 1839). Chef Stefane is on hand to craft the best local and seasonal ingredients into wholesome meals that pair perfectly with a drop from the extensive wine list or frosty pint of craft beer. Expect pub classics such as burgers and schnitzel with a French twist, plus a surprising menu items like confit duck, coquilles St Jacques and lobster prawn roll with yuzu mayonnaise. Leave room for the bitter chocolate mousse with salted caramel and honeycomb crumble.
The state's top producers
Applewood Distillery, Adelaide Hills
If you’ve sipped enough Adelaide Hills wine for the day, why not migrate your tastebuds to the spirit realm? Applewood Distillery is an award-winning Hills distiller that supports local farmers and native ingredients in its products. Not only will you find a variety of gins featuring a smattering of native ingredients, but there’s also limoncello made using local lemons, amaro, outback liqueur and coffee liqueur. Take a gin flight through the range, taste a couple of your choosing or join a distillery tour. There’s also a cocktail menu (and some non-alcoholic, too, to keep your driver happy) if you’d prefer to sit and sip at your own pace.
Woodside Cheese Wrights, Adelaide Hills
Woodside Cheese Wrights is one of South Australia’s most celebrated local producers, and owner and cheesemaker Kris Lloyd is a passionate local produce advocate. The cheese here is made using goat, cow and buffalo milk, with some only available at certain times of year. At the cellar door in Woodside, you can enjoy a mixed plate right there and then or take some home for later. Soft, hard, oozy, aromatic — you name it, they have it. Our pick? The monet cheese, topped with edible flowers, which is practically a South Australian icon. The cellar door also houses a range of local sauces, chutneys, crackers, cookbooks and more.
Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop, Barossa
Anyone visiting the Barossa should make a beeline for Maggie’s, a local favourite for more than 40 years. The Beer family pour their love of the region into creating beautiful produce from fruits grown in their orchard, selling chutneys, jams, juices, oils and much, much more via their farm shop. Load up on goodies to take home, maybe stopping at The Eatery next door for a bite or booking a cooking demonstration, where you can learn how to add some ‘Maggie flare’ to your dishes.
Jacob’s Creek, Barossa
A trip to the Barossa is incomplete without a visit to world-famous Jacob’s Creek. The estate’s story dates back to 1847, when Johann Gramp planted his first vineyard. His vision to create great wines that reflect the true character of the grapes and land continues to be realised today via an extraordinary team of winemakers. Pick up a bottle of the unmissable Double Barrel range, which is crafted using superior grapes and finished in aged whisky barrels to build additional layers of complexity.
Butcher, Baker, Winemaker Trail, Barossa
This unique trail calls itself a ‘Yellow Brick Road’ for grown-ups, leading you to almost all of the best Barossa producers. Visit farms, stores and cellar doors as you gradually assemble a picnic for two in your gourmet hamper. Use your VIP voucher to collect a complimentary bottle of wine from one of the participating cellar doors, then follow the provided trail map to meet the locals and select your favourite treats. The map also includes a list of top picnic spots, so you can sit down and enjoy lunch with a view.
Kilikanoon Wines, Clare Valley
You’d be hard pressed to find a more idyllic setting to sip Clare Valley wines than Kilikanoon Wines. Surrounded by pretty cottage gardens, an orchard, vineyards and tall gums, this peaceful gem whisks you away from everyday life. Try drops from some of the world’s oldest vines, yielding shiraz, riesling, cabernet and grenache. Take your time over a wine-tasting paddle on the terrace, let the experts take you through Kilikanoon Wines’ finest drops during a tailored tasting or phone ahead to book a private experience for your group.