5 reasons to love... World-class art, innovative dining – KYLIE MITCHELL-SMITH falls for Tassie’s latest offerings
Hobart’s top 5
1 MONA’S STILL GOT IT
The Museum Of Old & New Art (MONA) has been attracting culture vultures from far and wide since opening in 2011. The 25-minute ferry trip from Brooke Street Pier in the middle of town sets the tone – seats shaped as sheep and a stray cow sculpture increase intrigue. Winding my way down a spiral staircase into the bowels of the museum, I find a bar with oversized canvases and ephemeral words cascading down the wall. Simply breathtaking!
2 OLD CONSTANTLY MEETS NEW
Ddon’t’tlleave ththe Apple Isle’s capital city without at least dropping into the Henry Jones Art Hotel, a glorious establishment built within tthe confines of the old IXL jam factory nenear the docks. The service and style are impeccable and I am suitably impresimpressed with the decor as the work of local artists rotarotate on the walls thanks to the help of a nearby art school. There’s a hearty a la carte breakfast on offer in the mornings but if you’re more of a night owl, you’ll choose the IXL Long Bar, which prides itself on shaking up classic cocktails with modern twists.
3 THERE’S AN ISLAND DEDICATED TO FOOD!
I catch a car ferry to Bruny Island where I stumble upon pig farmer Ross O’meara from the TV series
The Gourmet Farmer. Ross and his family live off the land and his wallaby burgers (which can be found in Hobart’s CBD at Street Eats @ Franko night market, Franklin Square) are delicious. Bruny has a smokehouse, a cheese factory and the House of Whisky. Bruny Island Cheese Co. uses leftover whey to make beer. Better still, the cheese is smooth and the beer’s mighty fine.
4 A HOT NEW HOTEL HAS OPENED
MACQ1 is a swanky hotel at Hobart’s docks. It’s timber and day spa-looking but given its location, you’ll get a good sense of Tasmania’s wharf history. Each of the 114 rooms pays tribute to a local character. I slept in the room of Cocky Billet, a criminal known for dapper dress sense, so it’s no surprise the room is dripping in swagger.
5 THE AGRARIAN COOKING SCHOOL’S NEARBY!
Rodney Dunn and his wife Severine Demanet have been realising their dream, running the Agrarian Kitchen cooking school (in Lachlan, 45 minutes from Hobart) for the past nine years. Specialising in cooking classes, offering everything from cheese making to cake baking, their organic farm feeds their restaurant, The Agrarian Kitchen Eatery & Store, housed in an ex-mental asylum in the nearby town of New Norfolk. What you’ll probably care most about, though, is the array of cured meats, preserved and smoked on site. Opt for the house-made stracciatella with new season olive oil, mint and chilli – it’s a taste sensation.