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10 days in South Australia - seeking recommendations please!

Hi we are travelling from Auckland to Adelaide in Feb and basically live to eat, so really keen to try some good food on our travels!
we are going to be spending time in Adelaide, Barossa Valley and Fleurieu peninsular.

Keen to get some recommendations - especially:

1) Adelaide - good "ethnic" (for want of a better word) eateries - we arent so fussed about going to the fanciest restaurants so much as trying some good authentic food - in particular the cuisines that Auckland doesnt do well - Vietnamese, Lebanese, Iranian, Ethopian - also never say no to great Thai or Japanese - make that pretty much anything - if its outstanding then we want to try it! Also we dont mind splurging if its required but authenticity is the key!

2) Barossa Valley - keen to do lots of wine tasting and some winery lunch and/or dinners somewhere that has a great setting AND has good food and wine - again dont mind splurging for somewhere nice.

3) Fleurieu - again recommendations for Mclaren Vale in terms of wineries for dining at and visiting. Also, heard a lot of good things about Star of Greece - wonder, is it really as good as the hype? We will be staying near Port Elliot so recommendations for there or Victor Harbour also appreciated.

thanks for any comments/posts
cheers
FF

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  1. Why stick to "ethnic" in Adelaide? From my time in Adelaide, there are good ones, but I also found the "fancy" restaurants are great value (especially compared to Melbourne/Sydney) with very good/innovative cooking. Based on my (one) visit to Auckland you may find Adelaide can show you both "fancy" and "ethnic" restaurants that Auckland doesn't do as well.

    1. I wouldn't hold your breath for Iranian or Ethiopian in Adelaide. As a city, it has a lot of restaurants but most are pitched at the Adelaidians less adventurous tastes. Good Cantonese, Thai, Sichuan - yes. Ethiopian, Uighur, no.

      I'd back Phil's suggestion: do a mix, but the best mod oz restaurants are top of the Australian tree. Grange for fusion, Magill Estate for stunning classic cuisine, Gauchos for dead cow on a stick, smart Italian in Nth Adelaide (can't remember the name, they have loads of coffee shops), La Guillotine for bistro french and any host of others. I even break my cardinal rule of hotel-hating and recommend breakfast at the Hilton.

      I prefer McLaren Vale to Barossa, both for wineries and eating, though Bridgwater Mill out Barossa-ward has a very good reputation but has odd opening hours. Haven't been for a bit so there could be new places there. Salopian Inn in McLaren would be a good start down south.

      7 Replies
      1. re: mr_gimlet

        Star of Greece definitely deserves its hype - great food in a beautiful location. Completely worthwhile I reckon. I was in Adelaide for a few nights recently and had great meals at Farina Kitchen & Bar, Enoteca Cucina, Auge and Mesa Lunga.

        1. re: MaestroSid

          Thanks PhilD, Mr_Gimlet and MaestroSid - great to have your recommendations! FF

          1. re: food fascist

            Hey FF.. I love Adelaide! My partner and I spend 2 weeks there every year and McLaren Vale is our favourite spot.. A must visit in McClaren Vale is Coriole winery for food and wine, Wirra Wirra is wonderful - especially their Mrs Wigley Moscato and Church Block, Star of Greece does live up to its name - be sure to get an outside table, you must visit Willunga markets which are on every saturday. In Hahndorf you have to enjoy the Cheese at Udder Delights - I highly recommend the Chevre rolled in ash or herbs and goat's camembert. In Barossa you can't go past Maggie Beer's store and Barossa markets on every saturday. In the city there is Mesa Lunga and on the outskirts there is a place called Salsa which doesn't look like much from the outside but the food is amazing!

            1. re: TheKitchenEnquirer

              Can endorse: Grange @ the Hilton www.adelaide.hilton.com ; Chianti Classico www.chianticlassico.com.au ; Mesa Lunga http://www.mesalunga.com/
              try breakfast at the Central Markets http://tinyurl.com/dhonay.
              Heading for Auckland in May. What's your favourite? de l.

              1. re: legume

                you have some awesome recs from the guys above. I head to Adelaide 5-6 times a year and love it there. MrGimlet is right though, they dont have a very adventurous palate down there on the whole. Regarding Udder Delights in Hahndorf, 2 of 3 cheeses my friend bought were pretty old and not really great eating. If you can get into The Grange at the Hilton, you should go. Although the decor is not the best, Cheong Liew is considered to be one of the finest (and often under rated) chefs in Australia.

                1. re: brunelleschi

                  Hey Brunelleschi, that's really dissapointing that your friends got such crap cheeses from Udder Delights.. I eat there every trip at least twice and the cheeses were always fresh.. I second The Grange at the Hilton, Cheong Liew is amazing!

                  1. re: TheKitchenEnquirer

                    we could have been really unlucky. it does happen! im a fan of giving second chances and i really liked the feel and effort they've put into their little store, so ill be giving it another shot next time im there....its only fair!

      2. If for some reason you find yourself in Mount Gambier (the big blue lake is really really wierd), there is a great steak restaurant called The Barn. Seriously, one of the best steaks I've ever had. Plus when you pick the wine, you are asked to pick it directly from the cellar, which is kinda cool. I don't think it's open for lunch.