book a ta­ble

Country Style - - A MONTH IN THE COUNTRY -

VIC­TO­RIA Au­gust 2nd, The In­de­pen­dent Re­open­ing af­ter a mid­win­ter break, taste chef Mauro Cal­le­gari’s con­tem­po­rary menu — in­spired by the win­ter sea­son, the best lo­cal in­gre­di­ents and his Ar­gen­tinian her­itage — sprin­kled with Span­ish, Ital­ian, Cre­ole and North African flavours. The free-range suck­ling pig is pop­u­lar with groups, but there’s also a ve­gan menu at this re­laxed restau­rant and bar in the leafy set­ting of the Dan­de­nong Ranges. (03) 5968 1110; thein­de­pen­dent­gem­

NSW Bistro Mo­lines The menu is ever chang­ing at this Hunter Val­ley vine­yard restau­rant, de­pend­ing on what pro­duce is fresh­est; how­ever, the food never strays far from chef Robert Mo­lines’s French roots, with old favourites from his na­tive Provence. Dishes such as civet of farmed rab­bit with di­jon mus­tard, green olives and caramelised baby car­rots, or twice roasted Hunter duck­ling on braised cab­bage with or­ange glaze, fifin­ished with a dessert of choco­late fon­dant with rasp­berry coulis and straw­berry ice-cream, are de­li­cious. Open Thurs­day to Mon­day for lunch, and Fri­day to Satur­day for din­ner. (02) 4990 9553; bistro­mo­

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