We’re always on the road. And although we’re not going to pretend a local level of knowledge (okay, maybe we’ll pretend), when you visit a city at least two to three times a year, you get to know it pretty well.
We love Adelaide. Its food and wine scene is so, so solid. It’s hard to narrow down our favourite places, so rather than call them our favourites, let’s just call them repeat offenders.
After a rogue fire pit almost burnt the building down last year, chef Duncan Welgemoed rethought his offering. Out with the open flames went the heavy protein dishes of South Africa, to be replaced by the lighter, veggie and pulse dishes of the North. There’s still meat on the menu, of course, but it shows up in dishes like the crispy chicken skin-stuffed tea sandwiches with dripping for dipping; ground lamb with hummus; or local Goolwa pipis. Still, while the menu (and the interior) may have changed, the good times vibe remains. It’s not a trip to Adelaide for us without a trip to Africola.
4 East Terrace, Adelaide
Tues to Sat, 6pm – late
Its smoked eel campanelle with chilli, peas and lemon is up there with the best dishes we’ve eaten this year. So too its carbonara, made with the traditional guanciale yet untraditionally topped with a cured, cold-smoked egg yolk, or the vitello tonnato made with veal tongue instead of fillet. Oggi means ‘today’ in Italian, and that’s Osteria Oggi’s jam: to take tradition and make it current. It’s loud, fast and fun, and we absolutely insist you pay it a visit.
76 Pirie St, Adelaide
Mon to Sat, 11.30am – late
Parwana Afghan Kitchen
We don’t come here for the wine. They don’t even sell it – although you can BYO for $10 corkage, a fee which is later donated to a homelessness charity. We come here because there are few things as comforting as Farida Ayubi’s signature Banjaan Borani, eggplant simmered in tomato with garlic yoghurt and mint (a particular favourite of Peter’s), or her Mantu dumplings in a mince sauce. The genuine hospitality shown here is often exactly what we need when we’re away from home.
124B Henley Beach Rd, Torrensville
Tues to Thurs 6pm – 10pm, Fri to Sat 6pm – 10.30pm, Sun 6pm – 10pm
The Summertown Aristologist
Natural, organic, biodynamic, minimal intervention – however you want to spin it, the Adelaide Hills is full of it. And one of the best examples is The Summertown Aristologist. A collaboration between natural winemakers Anton Von Klopper (Lucy Margaux) and Jasper Button (Commune of Buttons), and hospo gun Aaron Fenwick (former general manager and sommelier at Orana), the Aristologist’s ethos is all those things. Produce for the simple, ever-changing menu is grown locally and organically and almost everything is made in-house. As for wine, the cellar is stocked with not just Anton and Jasper’s labels but a range of natural wines from the Basket Ranges and the world.
1097 Greenhill Rd, Summertown,
Fri to Sun, 9am – 9pm
Lost in a Forest
A mere skip up the road from the Aristologist is Lost in a Forest, perhaps better known as the Unofficial Cellar Door of Taras Ochota’s eponymous label. Housed inside a 130-year old church (complete with wood oven and an outdoor fire pit) the rules of this game are simple: organic pizza, organic wine. The pours are mostly Ochota, although locals like Alpha Box & Dice or Gentle Folk often make an appearance. Great for groups, whether that’s family or your own bunch of Revellers.
1203 Greenhill Rd, Uraidla
Thurs 5pm – 9pm, Fri to Sun 12pm – late.