We learn seven indulgent ways to spend a long weekend of sheer indulgence for foodies and wine lovers.
Sauerkraut, chocolate and wine: Hahndorf, SA
Hahndorf, an adorable village in the Adelaide Hills, is the oldest continuously inhabited German community in Australia. The 1839 German Arms Hotel, one of several old “Fachwerk” buildings (with traditional German timber frames) flanking the main street, is a terrific place to chow down on German fare and a mug of beer. The town still maintains its German roots. A package that includes breakfast, a cheese plate, and a ChocoVino experience at Hahndorf Hill Winery, where you can pair wine and chocolate, is available at The Manna of Hahndorf, a boutique hotel located in the center of the town. By the end of the weekend, the belt will probably require an additional hole.
From French bubbles to natural springs: Mornington Peninsula, VIC
Tussie Mussie is a Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris vineyard situated up a long path bordered by olive trees and vines. It also has lovely boutique lodging. Enjoy the regional fare while spending two nights in The Old Laundry’s plush bedding or by the cozy wood stove. Your stay will begin with an iced bottle of French champagne, a gourmet breakfast basket each morning, and a three-course dinner with paired wine at the hat-adorned Lé Patanque French Restaurant. Your palette will be soothed by a double trip to the Peninsula Hot Springs—at least for a couple of hours.
Hold a dinner party to remember : Bowral, NSW
Always wanted to host a dinner party but weren’t sure how the cooking would go? You and your friends may host a dinner party while learning how to prepare each meal at the Blue Bowl Brown Sugar Cooking School in Bowral. They will work with you to create a menu and deliver the goods and supplies to the venue of your choice. As for the location, we advise renting out the Seidler House for a weekend. This exquisite award-winning mansion looks out over the Wingecarribee River gorges, but more importantly, it has a sizable kitchen and a sizable entertainment space with a fireplace. ideal for presenting.
Pub grub like no other: Dunkeld, VIC
The Royal Mail Hotel wears three well-deserved hats, making it different from your typical country inn. You should reconsider eating in pubs after experiencing the award-winning sample platters. The hotel offers a “Dine and Unwind” package that includes a tour of the garden with lodging, handcrafted chocolate, dinner for two with matching wine, breakfast, and a late check-out so that guests can fully enjoy the exquisite cuisine, which is made from fresh, organic ingredients gathered from the kitchen garden. You can also explore the numerous walking routes that go to the adjacent Grampians National Park to burn it all off.
Have your own private whisky tasting: Margaret River, WA
The Grove combines a winery, distillery, brewery, and lodging under one roof. Three straightforward, self-contained lodging alternatives with individual jacuzzis and gas fireplaces are available in the lovely Margaret River region; they’re a perfect choice for a gathering of friends. Why not extend your visit with a personalized whisky tasting? You will be carefully led through the one-hour tasting of The Grove’s own whisky and a single malt chosen by The Scotch Malt Whisky Society, which is set up in the Whisky Room. A freshly roasted coffee to end on—you might need it.
Fresh oysters and champagne for breakfast: Coles Bay, TAS
Imagine sipping champagne and sampling prized Pacific Ocean oysters while knee-deep in a gorgeous wetland. Visitors at Saffire-Freycinet have the option to do just that by donning a pair of waders. Learn about the local ecology by trying your hand at shucking. If oysters aren’t your thing, there are plenty of other dining and drinking opportunities available. For example, you might take a class in mixology or study the craft of winemaking. And with modern decor, roomy windows, comfortable bedding, locally sourced gourmet food, and a delectable spa menu, we don’t blame you if you want to spend the weekend inside.
Follow the Strange Bird: Granite Belt, Qld
Take the Strange Bird trail in the Granite Belt boutique wine region for a unique wine tasting experience. Alternative grape types like Petit Verdot, Viognier, and Barbera are the focus of the trail. You can tell these drops are really special since, according to the Australian Wine and Brandy Corporation, a variety cannot account for more than 1% of all Australian yielding vines. The modern, self-catered Azjure Studio Retreat is close to three of the wineries on the trail: Tobin Wines, Ballandean Estate, and Golden Grove. It has a lovely setting.
Winery Tour Yarra Valley
Unit 201/98 River Esplanade
Docklands, VIC 3008
(03) 7042 3201