d’arry’s verandah …

the next tempting palates dining experience saw us venturing out of the city and heading south to sample the food and drink at d’arry’s verandah restaurant.

d'Arrys Verandah on Urbanspoon

d’arry’s verandah restaurant is located at the d’arenberg winery. d’arenberg is situated in the hills 4km north of mclaren vale on the fleurieu peninsula.

mclaren vale, 35km south of adelaide, is one of australia’s renowned wine regions with over 65 cellar doors.

we had a table outside – the perfect spot for what ended up being a long relaxing afternoon.

the minute you sit down you are drawn to the stunning views of the vineyards.

we were in a winery so when in rome, do as the romans do – drink wine …

the menu had a lot of interesting dishes – very creative to say the least.

4 in the group decided to share a few dishes. they had the house made dukkah & bread with diana extra virgin olive oil & brian’s marinated olives –

the hot stuffed spanish queen olives with lime aioli –

and the lobster medallion with blue swimmer crab & prawn ravioli & lobster bisque –

i chose the lobster dish for my entree and it was absolutely divine. this was by far the best entree dish that i have had during my ‘tempting palates’ travels.  the dish that tops this is going to have to be one heck of a dish!

one of the guys had a plate of chickpea & silken tofu dumplings with wood ear fungus, enoki mushrooms, baby corn, fresh herbs & thai dressing –

next came the mains. roast pumpkin & fetta tortellini with mustard cream & toasted hazelnuts –

duck leg a l’orange chinois with seared breast, new ginger, kohlrabi & local citrus salad –

roast rack of lamb rack with roasted heirloom carrots, grilled asparagus, vanilla infused swede puree & cassis glaze –

inman valley chicken rolled with parsley, sage, rosemary & thyme, stilton twists & herbed spinach sauce –

i had the chicken dish which was cooked to perfection – it was moist and tender. when i read that the dish was served with spinach sauce i was almost tempted to pick the lamb dish. i’m not a huge fan of spinach (in any form). thankfully the flavour of the sauce was just right. the stilton twist was an interesting addition.

for those that could manage it (and i couldn’t) desserts were next.

salty caramel tapioca with hazelnut meringue & mango sorbet –

apple & rhubarb sorbet with noble wrinkled riesling zabaglione & almond crumble –

pistachio cake with orange jelly, cardamom cream & saffron croquant –

soft centered chocolate pudding with chocolate ice cream –

you couldn’t fault the presentation of the food. it was matched by the exceptional taste. if you want a little bit of high end indulgence then d’arry’s verandah is the place.

as i drove away from the winery i couldn’t help but notice a sculpture at the entrance (which i missed driving in). it’s a copper covered sculpture by south australian artist craig ellis. the sculpture is called ‘handling soil’ and was unveiled in february 2012.

the sculpture is of two hands emerging from the ground. it was designed and commissioned by family winemaker chester osborn to represent the four generations of osborn handling the soil into grapes and in turn wine. in the palms of the hands are bunches of perspex grapes that are lit at night.

the left hand features joseph rowen osborn and francis ernest osborn.

the right hand has francis d’arenburg osborn ‘d’arry’ and chester d’arenburg osborn.

joseph rowen osborn (1852-1921) purchased the property in 1912. the devoted sportsman started the norwood football club. he is holding a football (aussie rules) and has a racing pin on his breast pocket –

francis ernest osborn (1888-1957) (joseph’s son) built the original foundation of the winery in 1927 and continued to develop exports of mclaren vale wine to the uk. he is happily nursing a glass of his finest drop –

francis d’arenburg osborn ‘d’arry’ 1927 – creator of the red stripe and the first d’arenburg labelled wine. an avid fisherman with 70 vintages under his belt. along with his order of australia medal he displays his other true love – fishing –

chester d’arenburg osborn 1962 – he is the current winemaker behind the proliferation of the d’arenburg wine range and puzzle aficionado (hence the rubik’s cube). he is notorious for his daring loud shirts –

as the website states “the glorious view from d’arry’s verandah and d’arenberg cellar door sets the scene for an unforgettable dining experience.” and that it did.

this place was worth travelling the distance. i live over an hour away. i highly recommend this place. you will not be disappointed. booking is essential. lunches only from 12pm mon – sun. for those who like to go all the way, d’arry’s verandah does offer a degustation menu.

i have an excuse to go back – must.try.the.desserts.

tempting palates’ overall rating score >> tempting palates

“wine makes every meal an occasion, every table more elegant, every day more civilized.” ~ andre simon


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