Revival of the Culinary Scene in Tasmania

2 Oct

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Re-posted from | by Rick O’Shea

Cast your mind back a few years and Tasmania was a culinary wasteland with a handful of restaurants and a few struggling vignerons.

But times change and today the island state is a gourmet hot spot dotted with world-class eateries and producing cool-climate wines that are much sought-after by sommeliers and aficionados worldwide.

From former two-hat chef Hugh Whitehouse (ex Darleys at Lilianfels) at The Palate, the signature restaurant of luxury lodge Saffire, to Frenchman Philippe Leban at The Source, part of the MONA complex north of Hobart, Tasmania is attracting top-notch chefs with its stunning fresh produce.

From Stillwater and Black Cow Bistro in Launceston to Hobart’s Garagistes and Ethos Eat Drink, Tasmania has a sumptuous choice of eateries at which you can sample fresh local seafood, Huon Valley mushrooms or maybe some locally grown wasabi.

From the Tamar Valley and Pipers River regions in the north to the iconic wineries of the East Coast to the Derwent, Coal River and Huon valleys surrounding Hobart, Tasmania’s vineyards are attracting global attention.

While the island state currently accounts for less than 1 per cent of all Australian wine production, its cool-climate vineyards have proved perfect for new-wave sparkling wines, brilliant pinots and stunning aromatic whites.And it’s not only the big names such as Tamar Ridge, Moorilla Estate, Stefano Lubiana, Frogmore Creek, Pipers Brook, Bay of Fires and Josef Chromy that are producing great wines.

Artisan producers are popping up all over the place, often making less than 1000 cases of wine.

There are also several boutique breweries and distilleries.

With the advent of global warming, and as wine drinkers’ tastes switch from big, oaky high-alcohol styles to more restrained cool-climate wines, Tasmania is perfectly positioned.

The wine world was stunned when a shiraz made by Nick Glaetzer of Glaezter-Dixon Family Winemakers won the Jimmy Watson trophy for best young red at last year’s Royal Melbourne Wine Show.

Tasmania has traditionally been seen as too cold for shiraz and cabernet, but both thrive in certain micro-climates.

Among the cellar doors where you can combine local produce with fine wines are Josef Chromy, Meadowbank, Home Hill and Moorilla Estate, home not only to The Source, but also to the headline-grabbing MONA – the Museum of Old and New Art.

The Chromy Wines facility at Relbia, down the road from Launceston Airport, is a must-visit on the Tamar Valley Wine Route.

The cellar door overlooks vineyards and a lake a new restaurant and function centre recently opened here… [Read More]




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