Taste of Tassie Take a gas­tro­nomic road trip for a bite of the Ap­ple Isle.

Take a gas­tro­nomic road trip around re­gional Tas­ma­nia. You’ll be de­lighted by the of­fer­ings, par­tic­u­larly in the north, writes Laura Barry.

Australian House & Garden - - CONTENTS -

Tourists to Aus­tralia’s is­land state of Tas­ma­nia tend to visit the har­bourfront city of Ho­bart, en­joy­ing Sala­manca Mar­ket, the Mu­seum of Old and New Art and a thriv­ing foodie scene. Mean­while, other ar­eas – in­clud­ing the lesser-known north­ern city of Launce­s­ton – are un­der­go­ing a culi­nary re­nais­sance, with pur­vey­ors of fine foods, wine­mak­ers and sus­tain­able grow­ers through­out the re­gion mak­ing a liv­ing do­ing what they love.

Fine din­ing

Geron­imo Aper­i­tivo Bar & Restau­rant (geron­i­morestau­rant.com.au) on Charles Street in Launce­s­ton, owned and op­er­ated by Jeremy Kode, is one such place. Af­ter years abroad per­fect­ing his gas­tro­nomic art, Jeremy re­turned home to open a restau­rant ded­i­cated to serv­ing in­spired sea­sonal food that har­nesses the flavours from his par­ents’ sus­tain­able farm, 20 min­utes’ drive away in Long­ford. There, fruit and herbs are grown, cows roam free in fields, the hand-reared lambs love a cud­dle – and not a sin­gle un­nat­u­ral chem­i­cal or pes­ti­cide touches the land.

Per­fect for a night­cap

Hid­den away in a ‘hole in the wall’ on Bris­bane Street is Red Brick Road

Cider­house & Bar (red brick road cider. com.au), which spe­cialises in authen­tic pear and ap­ple ciders made from nat­u­ral in­gre­di­ents us­ing tra­di­tional meth­ods. The ciders and per­ries (pear cider) are sugar-free, un­pas­teurised, un­fil­tered and nat­u­rally fer­mented. Pro­pri­etor Corey Baker is more than happy to talk you through the range and host a tast­ing.

Mar­ket finds

Not to be for­got­ten are the hum­ble bread, but­ter and ba­sic food groups. A visit to the

Har­vest Mar­ket (har­vest­mar­ket.org.au), held on Sat­ur­day morn­ings in Launce­s­ton, will re­ward you with hand­made loaves and de­li­cious al­mond crois­sants from Manu Bread, liq­uid gold from Honey Tas­ma­nia, cheese from Coal River Farm and tasty nat­u­rally fer­mented cul­tured but­ter hand­made by Tas­ma­nian But­ter Co.

On the trail of great wine

If you en­joy a glass of sparkling, visit the Josef Chromy Cel­lar Door, Vine­yard

and Win­ery (jose­fchromy.com.au) in Rel­bia. At 19, Josef Chromy es­caped the war in the Czech Repub­lic and even­tu­ally made his way to Aus­tralia, where he started as a butcher be­fore mov­ing into

wine. He now pro­duces some of the Ta­mar Val­ley’s finest cool-cli­mate drops. The Cel­lar Door, in a re­fur­bished lake­side her­itage house, of­fers a four-hour Art of Sparkling Ex­pe­ri­ence for $235. Guests learn about the wine­mak­ing process from pick­ing and press­ing grapes to sweet­en­ing a batch and then, fol­low­ing a two-course lunch, leave with their own cus­tom bot­tle of sparkling.

Moores Hill Es­tate (moore­shill.com.au) in Sid­mouth is Tas­ma­nia’s first en­tirely so­lar-pow­ered, off-the-grid win­ery. It spe­cialises in aro­matic wines and pinot noir, with ro­bust fruit flavours and rel­a­tively high nat­u­ral acids. Ev­ery­thing is done by hand at this medium-size win­ery, which pro­duces an ex­cel­lent mid-range drop.

In Le­b­rina, bou­tique vine­yard Apogee (apogee­tas­ma­nia.com), owned by An­drew Pir­rie – a dual fi­nal­ist in the Qan­tas/ Gourmet Trav­eller WINE Wine­maker of the Year – fo­cuses on qual­ity of growth and pro­duces a spec­tac­u­lar sparkling rosé. At just two hectares, it’s a sim­i­lar size to what you might find in Cham­pagne, France. About 15,000 bot­tles are pro­duced each year, and its Tas­ma­nian sparkling has re­ceived in­ter­na­tional ac­claim.

The small, fam­ily-run vine­yard of

Si­napius Wines (si­napius.com.au) in Pipers Brook pro­duces just 1800 cases of wine each year, and re­lies on word-of­mouth rec­om­men­da­tions to grow its cus­tomer base. The grow­ers’ phi­los­o­phy is highly per­sonal and or­ganic; they don’t med­dle with or ma­nip­u­late the wines they pro­duce. Their vines are grown in high den­sity con­di­tions to en­sure high-qual­ity grapes burst­ing with flavour. Unique blended drops are a spe­cial­ity – the grapes are picked, pressed and fer­mented to­gether to cre­ate in­di­vid­ual flavour pro­files.

Out­door ad­ven­tures

Launce­s­ton of­fers a wealth of ad­ven­tures out­doors. Visit Cataract Gorge Re­serve (launce­s­ton­cataract­gorge.com.au) to walk its nu­mer­ous tracks, cross the bridge that swings over the wa­ter­falls and take in the cool calm this sanc­tu­ary of­fers. Just 10 min­utes’ drive from the heart of town, you can spot na­tive hens, egrets, swans and pel­i­cans at Ta­mar Is­land Wet­lands

(dis­cover­tas­ma­nia.com.au). Per­fect for thrill-seek­ers, Holly­bank Tree­tops

Ad­ven­ture (tree­top­sad­ven­ture.com.au) takes ad­van­tage of Tas­ma­nia’s tow­er­ing forests to of­fer a view of the lush nat­u­ral land­scape via zi­plines and fly­ing foxes. If the weather turns grey and driz­zly – quite likely at some point – pop into the Na­tional Au­to­mo­bile Mu­seum of

Tas­ma­nia (namt.com.au) on Cim­i­tiere Street and take a peek at more than

100 years of au­to­mo­tive styling and tech­no­log­i­cal ad­vances. South-west of the town is the World Her­itage-listed Cra­dle Moun­tain-Lake St Clair Na­tional Park

(dis­cover­tas­ma­nia.com.au), where walks range from a two-hour cir­cuit of Aus­tralia’s deep­est lake to a six-day hike of the world-fa­mous Over­land Track.

CLOCK­WISE FROM ABOVE The Agrar­ian Kitchen Eatery (thea­grar­i­ankitchen.com) at New Nor­folk is a must-stop if head­ing south from Launce­s­ton to­wards Ho­bart; it serves won­der­ful rus­tic Aus­tralian food. Josef Chromy Win­ery of­fers wine tast­ing with a view. Spec­tac­u­lar Cra­dle Moun­tain-Lake St Clair Na­tional Park. Fine fare at Josef Chromy. Lo­cal hero Geron­imo. Cataract Gorge.

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