South Australia’s gourmet wellness experiences
When it comes to the simple pleasures in life, good food and fine wine are at the top of the list – and in South Australia, you will find them around every corner. Here are five of our favourite places that celebrate what’s best about South Australia’s food scene – amazing produce grown responsibly and cooked with care. It’s good for you and it’s good for the planet.
Get connected at Fino Adelaide
At Fino Vino, they’re not just passionate about food, they’re also passionate about the people who make the food. They understand that whether you order the pan-seared brussels sprouts with eggplant, lentils and almond or a hearty duck confit with a bean cassoulet, the meal on your plate is created by a community of people that includes the growers and farmers as well as the kitchen team. Like its Barossa Valley sibling, Fino at Seppeltsfield, this Flinders Street diner is all about low waste and locally sourced ingredients presented with minimum fuss and maximum flavour.
“Every dish placed in front of you is created around ingredients that come from the kitchen garden or from one of the nearby farms.”
Feed your brain in Adelaide
We all know that seafood is packed with nutrients, including the prized omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish, which have been shown to improve cognitive ability. At Fishbank, housed in an ornate former bank on Rundle Mall, you can feast on 30 different types of seafood. The raw bar dishes up mackerel tartare, sashimi and freshly shucked oysters, while other options include everything from wok-fried pipis in XO sauce to panko-crumbed flathead kiev with garlic butter and mushy peas. You’ll feel yourself getting smarter as you eat.
Eat garden-fresh at Barossa Valley
The Barossa Valley’s most luxurious lodging, The Louise, is known for its commitment to sustainability – witness the Tesla charging station out front – and that is equally true of its fine-dining restaurant, Appellation. Take a seat at one of the tables overlooking the vineyards and you will find that every dish placed in front of you is created around ingredients that come from the kitchen garden or from one of the nearby farms. Even the drinking water is local: it is rainwater that has been filtered and carbonated.
Enjoy a family feast in Adelaide
A sense of hospitality is an essential part of Middle Eastern culture and nowhere is that more true than at Parwana Afghan Kitchen. Run by the Ayubi family, this colourful restaurant on Henley Beach Road always turns on a warm welcome. The best way to enjoy the food is banquet-style, so bring along as many friends as you can to enjoy the mouth-watering curries, dumplings (try the mantu which are steamed and stuffed with caramelised carrot and sauteed onion, and topped with lamb sauce), the breads and side dishes.
Drink low-impact wine at McLaren Vale
Sip a glass of shiraz on the deck at Gemtree Wines and you are drinking some of the most sustainable wine in McLaren Vale. Not only are Gemtree’s vineyards certified organic and biodynamic; the tasting room – built from recycled materials – is powered by solar panels and uses rainwater. The rest of the property hasn’t been neglected, either; the Gemtree team has also created the Eco Trail, a restored native landscape populated by rescue emus and koalas.
Learn the flavours of the world
Pound your own curry pastes in a mortar and pestle as you learn how to harness the flavours of Thailand, Vietnam, India, Japan, Morocco and Spain at The Sticky Rice Cooking School in the Adelaide Hills. The beauty of these classes is that they are run by some of Australia’s top chefs, who will teach you restaurant tips and how to refine your skills in the kitchen. Each beautifully prepared meal is paired with South Australian wines to enhance the flavour of dishes like chorizo and cider empanadas, Korean chicken and sticky sauce of Gochujang pepper and sesame. You can even stay the night in a beautifully appointed on-site villa.