Everyone else was busy releasing Top 50 or hats or stars and all the rest at the end of last year, so decided to go all Leathlean and add my own!
I don’t care what anyone says- at the moment, Adelaide is cooler than it ever has been! Riding on the back of AFL moving to the Adelaide oval, the proliferation of the uber cool bars under the new small bars licenses, and an explosion in the number of serious quality restaurants- you need to come and visit and experience the “new” Radelaide.
My random Top 10 of the minute ( moving target as everything is happening so fast at the moment!):
- THE ADELAIDE OVAL: You simply MUST experience footy (or cricket or anything for that matter) at Adelaide Oval. I have been to a lot of sports grounds in my day, and without any bias, it is one of the most awesome places to watch a game. The atmosphere is electric no matter who you barrack for, with 55,000 of your closest mates at each match creating a noise that makes you feel more like you are at a Hilltop Hoods concert than a footy or cricket match (#gocrows ; #strikers). Oh, apparently there is also a pretty stonking restaurant there, named after some little known wine….The Hill of Grace Restaurant
- JOLLEYS BOATHOUSE: We have loved the team at Jolleys for a long time, and the restaurant is somewhat of an institution in Adelaide. On the banks of the Torrens River, just a short walk to Adelaide Oval, Jolleys always impresses every time we visit. Don & Marg Oliver have enjoyed many a lunch there, and we have never stop hearing about it! To quote them “…best duck I have ever had…” and “….amazing everything…” An oldie but a goodie- make sure you visit soon. Pretty sure, if it’s before a football game at the Adelaide Oval, you will see Don there!
- GOLDEN BOY: from the moment you walk through the fluoro pink lit doors, Golden Boy has you entranced. Super cool and generous staff, delicious, flavourful and fresh Thai street food inspired menu, and a fun wine list (including some gems from yours truly!) I recommend the Tuk Tuk menu- the staff will bring out a great selection of the menu for you to try. It is only a small space, and fills up quickly, but they have a great online booking system, and being next door to the Botanic Bar, you can enjoy drinks while you wait for a table.
- CLEVER LITTLE TAILOR: such a cracking little bar in Peel Street,one of the first to pop up after the council finally began allowing small bar licences. Usually packed to the hilt, but with welcoming staff, great cocktails and an ever changing wine list, there is nothing not to love. Get there quick and grab some of our freshly released 2015 Oliver’s Taranga Small Batch Fiano by the glass. While you are in Peel Street make sure you eat at Peel Street Kitchen. Always packed, and the food has so much flavour it is mind blowing. Many dishes you cant go past, but the Banana blossom chicken dish is one I could eat every day. Aaaannnnnndddd, while you are there have a cocktail at Maybe Mae , they are something to behold. Aaaaannnnddddd, if you are uber cool, see if you can find the door to Pink Moon Saloon.
- MOTHERVINE: a little more of a grown up wine bar in the east end, MOTHERVINE is a wine lovers dream. Masterful part owner David Le Mire is a Master of Wine, and all of his skills are on show in the wine list. Especially fun is the tasting flight- 4 wines linked by some sort of theme. These change regularly, previously a flight of interesting Spanish wines included the variety Mencia. We have just started working with Mencia, being the first to plant it in Australia, so it is always great to be able to check out Mencia from the source. Currently, there is a McLaren Vale focused flight, including our 2015 Oliver’s Taranga Vermentino. Great little shared plates of food here as well.
- MADAME HANOI: all sorts of development is slated for the Adelaide Casino precinct, and if Sean’s Kitchen and Madame Hanoi are anything to go by, it’s going to be exciting to watch this space. Madame Hanoi is a brilliant Vietnamese street-food inspired space. The food is super tasty and authentic. Here, as at Golden Boy, I suggest the tasting menu. There are a couple of options, and apart from being a taste explosion, it is super good value. Again, a generous wine list- with 2012 Oliver’s Taranga Shiraz by the glass, you can’t go wrong!
- GALLERY BAR: There are some very cool rooftop bars in Adelaide at the moment (we also love 2KW). Apart from looking at the city from a different perspective, these are the best spots to meet up with mates after work for some wines by the glass or cocktails. Well, that’s what I imagine you would do if you were young and cool and lived and worked in the city- instead of being the country mouse that I am!
- STREET & ORANA: Chef Jock Zonfrillo is very passionate about Australian native cuisine- you can even catch him on the Discovery channel on his show ‘Nomad Chef’ where he learns about the native foods of many countries. Expect the unexpected at Orana. It is an experience that you will have to pay for, but an experience that you will never forget.
- SEVEN STARS HOTEL: A young gun team has given the Seven Stars a rebirth and it is uber cool. Great (better than) pub grub, craft beers, and a really good wine list. It is a no-brainer for an easy lunch or dinner. 10. CALEDONIAN HOTEL: this North Adelaide institution is well worth the visit. They put on some of the best wine dinners & lunches in Adelaide. The whirlwind of energy that is Fiona runs these events to perfection, and they are amazing value. Highly recommend you getting along to one, especially if you like a bit of wine education, straight from the source, with your delicious meal.
And, its not in Adelaide, but FINO SEPPELTSFIELD: the amazing, dynamic duo of front-of-house/somm/hostess-with-the-mostest Sharon Romeo & chef David Swain have expanded from their Willunga roots and have headed north to the Barossa. If you haven’t had the pleasure of their food and service, you are missing out. Stop whatever you are doing now, and get there. It is a MUST.