‘Tis the season to rug up and eat, drink and be merry.
As winter sets in, so does the urge to cosy up with food, and lots of it. From decadent degustations, to fine-dining with a view, paddock to plate experiences and casual lunch spots curled up by the fire, we’ve uncovered the cosiest places to indulge this winter.
1. Ember, Barossa
All your winter comfort food cravings will be fulfilled at Nuriootpa’s Ember Pizza & Grill. Another popular Barossa hangout, relaxed vibes, wood-fire pizzas and a smorgasbord of grilled and smoked meats will leave you in a blissful food coma. Paired with a carefully curated drinks menu showcasing local winemakers and beer brewers? Now you’re talking.
2. Brand's Laira, Limestone Coast
Red wine and cheese in a cosy cellar door? Sounds like a pretty good way to while away a winter’s afternoon! Brand’s Laira is home to one of the most charming cellar doors in the Coonawarra wine region. Oozing rustic charm and steeped in history, the stone cottage was originally the personal cellar of Eric Brand, the winery’s founder. Exposed wooden beams, old wine barrels and Eric’s old wine collection create the perfect atmosphere to enjoy a glass or two of the winery’s award-winning wine. Add a generous ploughman’s platter and you’re set.
3. Maxwell Wines' Lime Cave, Fleurieu Peninsula
A six-course wine-matched meal. In a limestone cave? Welcome to Lime Cave at Maxwell Wines in the heart of McLaren Vale. If you have an extra special event to celebrate this winter, Maxwell Wines offers the perfect unique subterranean setting – a cave dug 50 metres into a limestone hill tucked away behind the winery. Available for group pre-bookings, the cave is a magical and intimate space where you’ll unearth some of the best food and wine in the region. Surely this is hibernation at its best? If you’re just stopping in, there’s also plenty of reasons to visit Maxwell Wines above ground. Set among picturesque vineyards that date back to 1893, stop in for lunch at the main restaurant which offers an impressive line-up of locally sourced seasonal produce, taste a local drop or two at the cellar door or explore the epic maze.
4. Lost In A Forest, Adelaide Hills
Pizza and wine on a cold winter’s afternoon. What could be better? Add a charmingly converted 130-year old church complete with stained-glass windows, rustic woodwork, a gigantic pizza oven, cosy fireplaces and a moody forest backdrop and you’ve got the recipe for a perfect winter’s afternoon. Tucked in one of the prettiest corners of the Adelaide Hills, popular Uraidla haunt Lost In A Forest is a great spot to cosy up with friends this winter and enjoy the eclectic menu of gourmet, wood-fired pizzas featuring locally sourced produce and an impressive range of local wines, beers and cocktails. Adelaide Hills dining at its best!
5. Mt Lofty Ranges Vineyard, Adelaide Hills
Nestle up by the fire while you soak in views stretching across the rolling country side. Perched high above the Adelaide Hills, you can enjoy a long lunch with a view at Mount Lofty Ranges Vineyard. Offering an award-winning local food and wine experience, the intimate, rustic cellar door features panoramic views, a 360-degree central open fireplace and modern and eclectic décor. A full seasonal a la carte menu and impressive degustation luncheon with optional wine pairings are available Thursday to Sunday while light lunch options are available Monday to Wednesday.
6. Mayura Station, Limestone Coast
Uncover the ultimate paddock to plate experience in the midst of the Limestone Coast’s green rolling hills and prized farmland. Famed Mayura Station in Millicent is home to the world’s best Wagyu Beef (just check out their trophy cabinet) and the most prized cuts are cooked right before you at The Tasting Room, the station’s on-site restaurant, which was also voted Australia’s top steak restaurant. Sit around the kitchen bar with a glass or two of wine from their extensive list with a focus on local Coonawarra offerings and watch the chef cook your steak to perfection. Mayura Station is the ultimate hearty winter’s lunch experience.
7. Hentley Farm, Barossa
Converted stables dating back to the 1880s featuring exposed stone walls and wood beam ceilings create the perfect setting for an epic winter feast in one of SA’s best contemporary restaurants. With an impressive resume of international awards under its belt, Hentley Farm embodies the rich culture of South Australia’s Barossa. A meal at Fino Seppeltsfield restaurant will have you dining on and drinking in the highest quality produce the Barossa and surrounding regions have to offer, with much of the produce served sourced from the farm’s 150 acres, including foraged ingredients growing wild, as well as fruit, vegetables and herbs grown on site.
8. Crafers Hotel, Adelaide Hills
Warm up with some of the most sophisticated pub grub on offer in South Australia at Crafers Hotel. Oozing style and cosy winter vibes, this popular Adelaide Hills watering hole boasts an avant-garde interior featuring reclaimed wood, leather, iron, copper and exposed stone. A menu influenced by the richness of French cuisine (plus all the usual pub fare) and an award-winning wine room featuring rare and classic labels, the Crafers Hotel is sure to warm up you up on even the chilliest winter’s day. After dinner, grab a quick nightcap and curl up fireside on one of the luxurious red velvet couches.
9. Hardy’s Verandah Restaurant, Adelaide Hills
Picture this: a degustation dinner with a view spanning across the picturesque Piccadilly Valley, misty on a winter’s evening. Winter is the time for decadence so treat yourself to an incredible feast at Hardy’s Verandah Restaurant in Crafers. This Adelaide Hills restaurant has quickly made a name for itself with a timeless menu and sommelier-matched wine list earning Hardy’s Verandah 3 Chef Hats and countless national and international awards. Cozy-up by Mount Lofty House's roaring fireplace for a pre or post dinner wine and soak up the history and glamour of one of South Australia’s most iconic properties.
10. Seed, Clare Valley
Restaurant meets gin-lounge and wine bar at Clare’s Seed Winehouse and Kitchen. With old stone walls and twisting gum pillars, the former 1880s chaff mill radiates character. The interior is a rustic-yet-contemporary mix of stone, timber and steel and the perfect setting to tuck in to a seasonal winter feast. Take your pick from a carefully-curated European-inspired menu, matched with some of the Clare Valley’s finest wines.
11. The Salopian Inn, McLaren Vale
McLaren Vale’s iconic Salopian Inn plates-up some of South Australia’s finest food, straight from the garden of owner Karena Armstrong. The Salopian Inn’s menu is eclectic and ever-changing, reflecting Karena’s persistent culinary journey. The seasons dictate what is served, with a rotating menu featuring organic fruit, vegetables, locally-sourced beef, lamb, poultry and freshly-caught seafood.
12. FINO VINO, ADELAIDE CBD
One of South Australia’s best regional restaurants – Fino at Seppeltsfield – is now more accessible for hungry city slickers. Fino Vino, an urban interpretation of the iconic Barossa restaurant, is nestled in Adelaide’s Flinders Street. With a philosophy focused on seasonal produce, supporting local producers, growers and vignerons and minimal waste production, the menu is a fresh, tapas-style affair matched by chic, yet rustic interiors. With booths, communal tables, kitchen seating and a bar, it’s the perfect space for after work drinks and a bite to eat.
Discover the magic of South Australia in winter...
Has a warm haze of food and wine inspired you to cosy up in South Australia this winter? Why not stay a little long and book in a cosy winter hideaway, cottage or luxe B'n'B.