BAROSSA VALLEY, SA
After he was promoted to head chef of Fino at Seppeltsfield in 2015, Sam Smith and his family relocated to the Barossa Valley. “I’d been commuting from Adelaide, but having a connection to the place is important in a regional restaurant,” he says. “Now my daughter goes to school with the children of the people who supply our lamb.” Home to some of the country’s top food and wine producers, it’s no wonder Sam is enjoying his new life in the Barossa. Name your favourite local restaurants. Matteo and Fiona Carboni’s Casa Carboni is a very special enoteca, wine bar and cooking school in Angaston. They sell a fantastic selection of European wines and make arguably the best pasta in SA. Hentley Farm, at Seppeltsfifield, is one of the best fifine-dining experiences in the state. To eat the food produced by chef Lachlan Colwill and his team is to experience a perfect balance of textures, flflavours, and classic and modern styles. The food is matched with great wines and the music is pretttty good, too. And if you’re lucky enough to be a member of Rockford Wines’ Stone Wall Society — or know someone who is — the Stone Wall long table lunch is a must. Husband-and-wife team Sandor and Lauren Palmai cook exceptional produce sourced from the winery’s private garden. Every chef’s dream. Best breakfast? El Estanco in Greenock is great for breakfast and coffffee. And on Friday nights they fifire up the wood oven. The Barossa has a reputation for fantastic produce — what do you look out for at the market? The Barossa Farmers’ Market is held every Saturday morning in Angaston. My pick of the stalls are: The Dairyman for butttter and free-range pork; Barossa Birds for free-range chicken and quail; Littttle Bunyip from Clare for mushrooms and sprouts; and Mehl Bakery for fantastic sourdough and amazing crumpets. Get there early for the crumpets — the stallholders seem to grab most of them. Any other recommendations? Other notable producers to look out for are Hutttton Vale Farm for lamb and ducks, and Torzi Matttthews olives. There’s also a great history of fruit growing in the valley. Many of the original orchards still exist, providing seasonal blossom and an abundance of dried fruits for sale. Scout out donut peaches in summer. What are your picks of the many wineries? Hunt around for some of the smaller wineries and newer winemakers who are doing interesting things. Some examples are Shobbrook Wines, Yelland and Papps, Sami-odi and Ruggabellus. Any other places of interest? The Kaiserstuhl Conservation Park is a nice place to walk, and you can jump onto part of the Heysen Trail at Bethany. For address details, see page 112.
CLOCKWISE, FROM ABOVE Sam Smith, head chef of Fino at Seppeltsfield; a salad of saffron-poached chicken at Fino; looking down on the paddocks and vines of the Barossa; hand-rolled pasta with vegetable ragu at Casa Carboni in Angaston; the big skies and rolling farmland of the Barossa Valley.