CULINARY EXPERIENCE FROM BLUE MOUNTAINS TO ORANGE AUSTRALIAUncover a wealth of wining and dining attractions — with great scenery to match — in the two-hour drive from the Blue Mountains west to Orange. From venues with views that feed the soul to dishes made with hyper-local ingredients you can harvest yourself, it's a trip that ignites all the senses.

Savour the Blue Mountains

Be charmed by the scenic village of Leura, a 90-minute drive west from Sydney in the magnificent Blue Mountains. Enjoy the extraordinary views from the The Lookout Echo Point as you settle in with a cheese platter with house-made crackers, or power up with a falafel wrap after an invigorating mountain stroll.

Uncover more gourmet delights in Katoomba, the largest town in the mountains, just five minutes up the road. Follow the alluring scent of freshly baked sourdough to Black Cockatoo Bakery on Katoomba's long main street: the bread is fermented for 20 hours and the pastries (which range from chocolate and honeycomb tarts to coconut and nectarine Danish) are crafted with Pepe Saya cultured butter.

Take a refreshing pit stop at Mountain Culture, a craft brewery canning small-batch craft beer in a converted printing press. Order a burger to go with its range of ales, lagers and stouts. Then find your new favourite Aussie tipple on the all-Australian drinks list at Tempus Katoomba as you tuck into a sumptuous dinner inspired by the seasons. Or revel in the old-world extravagance of a chandelier-lit dinner at Darley's, the flagship restaurant for the historic Lilianfels Blue Mountains Resort & Spa.

Relax after an invigorating bushwalk at Ates in Blackheath, where the 150-year-old ironbark-fuelled oven (Ates means 'fire' in Ottoman Turkish) invites you to cosy up and feast on contemporary share plates and fun wines. Tuck into the likes of charcoal-grilled mahi mahi with braised fennel and carrot butter from the à la carte menu, or sample a range of dishes in chef's banquet menu for groups of six or more. Then sleep off your meal in style at the Kyah boutique hotel just up the road, with a Palm Springs-inspired design reimagined for a cool mountain setting.

Savour the ultimate paddock-to-plate meal at recently opened Megalong restaurant in the Megalong Valley, a 20-minute drive from Blackheath, where at least 90 per cent of produce is sourced from the farm on the same property, Lot 101. Feel enlivened by the escarpment and bushland views as you linger over a long weekend lunch or dinner from Thursday to Saturday.

Take a bite out of Orange 

Feel enlivened by the rural scenery as you continue your journey west of the Blue Mountains, bound for the heritage-listed village of Millthorpe. Here Tonic, a fine-dining restaurant with excellent service, makes for a particularly memorable lunch destination. Move on at your leisure to the booming wine region of Orange, conveniently just a 20-minute drive away.

Choose your own cellar door adventure

Taste the terroir in the cool-climate wines of the Orange region at its character-laden cellar doors. Whet your palate on a roaming tasting tour or private picnic among the vines at Heifer Station, which produces chardonnay, pinot noir, pinot gris, merlot, shiraz and more. And prepare to be enchanted by the century-old stone barn that sets the stage for tastings at acclaimed winery Philip Shaw — its Koomooloo vineyard is one of the region's highest and coolest.

Pair fine wines from the family-owned Swinging Bridge with soothing views of the extinct volcano known as Mount Canobolas, or book in for a four-course lunch matched with the estate's wines. Cosy up against the cool breeze at nearby Rowlee Single Vineyard Wines, where you can take your pick from a range of cellar door experiences, including an indulgent overnight escape at the estate's private guesthouse.

Uncover more delicious local craft drinks at Small Acres Cyder, a 15-minute drive from Orange, which produces its cider from locally grown apples and pears. Book ahead for a tasting or simply drop in to make a takeaway purchase. Or take a 25-minute drive from Orange to Pioneer Brewing Co. in Bowan Park to sample award-winning beers made from barley, rye and wheat grown and harvested on site.

Surprise a special someone with a helicopter arrival to Printhie Wines, followed by a private tasting and a decadent five-course lunch at the estate's sophisticated restaurant Printhie Dining, just one of several memorable experiences offered by the winery just outside Orange.

Feel right at home at the welcoming 22-room Byng Street Boutique Hotel in central Orange, which combines the history of an original homestead with contemporary furnishings.

Treat yourself to another day of indulgence

Enjoy a sweet start to your day with a fresh-baked cinnamon scroll or Portuguese tart at Birdie Noshery & Drinking Est., or opt for something more substantial, such as the warming vegetarian shakshuka.

Resist the temptation to fill up too much before lunch and grab a locally roasted coffee and a light takeaway brunch instead from Bills Beans East Orange, sip an aromatic brew at Byng Street Local Store, or take a leisurely 15-minute drive south of Orange to the village of Lucknow to enjoy a coffee as you browse homewares at Larder and Home, one of the Byng Street group's more recent ventures.

After a morning exploring the region, unleash your appetite at The Agrestic Grocer's restaurant, which showcases hyper-local produce with a sustainable focus. Pick up some housemade pickles and relish as edible souvenirs or as thoughtful gifts bound to inspire your loved ones to plan their own foodie road trips.

Relish the simple pleasure of harvesting your own produce: from summer to autumn, you can pick your own cherries, berries, apricots, peaches, plums, nectarines and apples at Hillside Harvest in Borenore, a 20-minute drive from Orange, or at Thornbrook Orchard in Nashdale, a 15-minute drive from town.


Post a Comment