Outback MagazineOutback Magazine


Clare Country Charm

Story by Melanie Kitschke
Photos by Nigel Parsons

Clare Country CharmAdventurous regional food, outstanding boutique wines, friendly service, and the idyllic setting of Eldredge Vineyards make for an unrivalled food and wine experience in SA's Clare Valley.

So popular is the cellar door restaurant on weekends with both locals and tourists, it pays to book ahead before embarking on the 7km scenic drive along Spring Gully Road west of Sevenhill.

Surrounded by vineyards and stunning natural bushland, the restored 1920s stone cottage cellar door and adjoining jarrah-decked restaurant area oozes country charm and elegance.

There's a wood fire in winter, blinds that can be raised for alfresco dining, mellow blues and swing-time jazz and views over lawns sweeping down to a large dam complete with ducks that come when you whistle and are always eager to be fed.

Winemaker, Leigh Eldredge, and his wife Karen established the cellar door restaurant six years ago to provide a marketing tool for their award-winning wines.

Clare Country CharmFood comes courtesy of a dynamic duo of independent gourmet caterers, English chef Philip Scarles and his partner, maitre d' and dessert queen, Amanda Waldron.

Born in London and Broken Hill respectively, both have adopted the Clare Valley as their home and embrace the wealth of local produce for innovative and constantly changing menus.

"Everything is freshly-grown and produced, stocks are made on the premises, and herbs are plucked straight from the garden," Amanda says. "Our menu reflects the best of what's available and in season." Story end

Full story: Issue 22, April/May 2002

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