Fine dining is often associated with big cities, exquisite food, well-renowned chefs, excellent service and breath-taking views. Collectively, with an exceptional wine list, of course, these components are what make fine dining the experience it is. However, you don’t always have to stay in the city to experience fine dining. Country fine dining is available too!
Right across Australia, we’re lucky to have numerous regional areas with an excellent fine dining scene. Names like the Hunter Valley, Barossa Valley or even Margaret River might come to mind, but they certainly aren’t the only ones. One of Queensland’s great country fine dining scenes is located just an hour out of Brisbane in the Scenic Rim.
The Scenic Rim offers everything from casual, relaxed dining, to five-star fine dining experiences. The region is quickly becoming known as a foodie hot spot, which grows much of its own produce within the Scenic Rim.
This country fine dining scene ticks all the boxes of exquisite food, well-renowned chefs, excellent service, great wine and breath-taking views. With all this just an hour away from Brisbane it is hard to pass up the opportunity to experience it first-hand.
Here are just a few of the beautiful restaurants you will want to visit in this region.
The first two restaurants are part of Spicer’s Retreats. There are common threads between all Spicers’ restaurants; the time that goes into the preparation of each ingredient, the thoughtful and generous service, the ability to offer guests an immersive experience, and the constant collaboration between the chefs. Despite this, each restaurant has its own unique character.
The fact that these restaurants work closely with local producers, including a number of farm suppliers to create bespoke produce for each season and menu, makes for an exceptional dining experience.
Country Fine Dining at Homage Restaurant
Homage is a new concept in dining and a 12-month labour of love for Spicers Hidden Vale Head Chef, Ash Martin. Set within a historic homestead on a picturesque 12,000-acre property, this exciting restaurant at Grandchester offers an unrivalled dining experience. As the name suggests, it pays due respect to the land, the local farmers and the produce itself, with each expertly crafted dish having added dimension.
Ash and his team design menus inspired by the local produce that they hand select daily. As a result, it is a menu that changes constantly based on what is harvested that day. Whether it’s fresh seasonal vegetables hand-picked from their market garden or local Freshwater Cray and beef from their own property, this is dining in its purest form.
Ash has been awarded a Chef Hat by both the Queensland and Australian Good Food Guides.
Homage restaurant has additionally been awarded one Chef Hat in both the 2017 Brisbane Times Good Food Guide awards and the 2016 Australian Good Food. The restaurant also received the 2015 Travel Guide Chef Hat awards.
Country Fine Dining at The Peak Restaurant
Spicer’s Retreats Peak Lodge is home to The Peak restaurant. Inspired by the fresh, seasonal, local produce and regional wines of the Scenic Rim and Granite Belt. Their Contemporary Australian á la carte and degustation menus deliver quite the culinary taste sensation. It is little wonder that The Peak was awarded two Chef Hats in the 2016 and 2017 Brisbane Times Good Food Guide awards, and the 2015 Australian Good Food Guide awards.
Head Chef, Tomasz Kornacki’s strong culinary ability with international cuisines allows him to showcase the region’s fruits and other locally sourced produce in a creative and unique way.
Country Fine Dining at Kooroomba
Kooroomba Vineyards and Lavender Farm is a masterfully designed property, making the most of the position and the views. Kooroomba consists of a cellar door, restaurant and lavender shop. The property overlooks a six-hectare vineyard and a breathtaking lavender field, with magnificent views of the Scenic Rim mountains. However, it isn’t just the views that make Kooroomba a great spot.
The award winning cellar door and restaurant complex is a blend of rustic and contemporary architecture. Modern Australian cuisine is served in the restaurant from local produce, providing a unique regional wine and food experience.
Country Fine Dining at Pethers Rainforest Retreat
Pethers Rainforest Restaurant is recognised as one of south east Queensland’s most romantic dining experiences. Set within Pethers luxurious boutique retreat, the restaurant and retreat were designed exclusively for adults.
The intimate restaurant is set around a massive open sided and elevated fireplace and overlooks pristine rainforest. The restaurant is extra spectacular at night when it is dramatically floodlit. You can enjoy Modern Australian fine dining here with stunning rainforest views.
Country Fine Dining at Songbirds Restaurant
Songbirds Restaurant in Songbirds Rainforest Retreat offers a unique combination of nature, luxury and indulgence. Located on over 50 acres of rainforest, Songbirds is a multi-award winning restaurant, most recently receiving an AGFG (Australian Good Food Guide) Chef Hat for 2016.
As with these other fine dining restaurants, we have mentioned, Songbirds’ creative culinary team selects the finest ingredients and uses organic produce when possible. Meals are prepared in a fresh, innovative style and served in a beautiful environment with the menu changing frequently to ensure diners enjoy the freshest seasonal flavours.