Known for its world-class vineyards, scenic vistas and exquisite dining, the Hunter Valley celebrates the best that the region has to offer by the bowlful. With flavoursome, day-fresh, seasonal ingredients and internationally renowned wines on tap, it’s little surprise that the Hunter Valley is home to some of the best fine dining restaurants in NSW.
Located just a 2-hour drive north of Sydney, the Hunter is ideal for an extra-special meal, milestone celebrations or simply as a well-deserved treat. Why not make a long weekend of it by checking into Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley – the ultimate resort in the region. To help save you time when planning memorable fine dining in the Hunter Valley, here are some of the best restaurants to check out.
Located within Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley, award-winning signature restaurant Redsalt Restaurant, delivers an ever-evolving menu that focuses on flavour, freshness and fine dining flair. Serving up the finest degustation menu and farmgate to plate freshness in the Hunter Valley, enjoy an unparalleled taste experience that will awaken your taste buds
Each season sees a fresh menu featuring five exquisite courses. Start your meal with the perfectly balanced flavours of winter radish, chilli and grilled Australian prawns before moving onto free-range sea-salted, and vinegared pork belly served with potato tuille. Next is a tender ‘Little Hill Farm’ chicken breast with house-fermented mustard, estate honey and rillette croquette. Beef tenderloin with bone marrow butter, forest fungi, celeriac and broad beans follows before finishing with a chardonnay and passionfruit Golden Eton Mess.
Bookings at Redsalt restaurant are essential.
Located just a quick 15-minute drive from Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley, Muse Kitchen serves up European bistro-style food with bold Hunter Valley flair that uses the best local and seasonal ingredients and produce. Open for lunch from 12 PM to 5 PM Wednesday to Sunday and dinner from 6 PM to 10:30 PM on Saturdays, a mouthwatering food journey awaits.
Start your meal with an entree of Seared swordfish, line-caught squid, bucatini, twice-baked cheese souffle or Peri-Peri Redgate Farm quail. Main dishes include Wood roasted pork cutlet, pan-roasted market fish, corn-fed chicken amandine, and beef fillet with pine mushroom ‘Dianne’. For dessert, sweet treats, including Key Lime Pie Baked Alaska, Strawberries and cream topped scones, chocolate and hazelnut parfait and local fromage, chips, and dips await.
Just a 10-minute drive from Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley and nestled amongst the vines of Cockfighters Ghost Vineyard in Pokolbin, Hunter’s Quarter is one of the best local fine dining restaurants. Kick back and relax with amazing food and beautiful views from your very own private terrace in the vineyards. Lose yourself as you sample pure flavours and delicate textures, perfectly combined and expertly prepared to reflect the freshness of the local area.
Begin with Salmon Crudo, kombu dashi, wasabi and pickled fennel, or sumac crusted quail, with hazelnut freekeh, Haloumi, and red cabbage. For the main course, mahogany smoked duck with spiced carrot, caramelised pear, and elderflower is a must. Other popular mains include white Pyrenees lamb with noisette, creamed parsnip, kalettes and marjoram emulsion and Berkshire pork belly with smoked white beans, and cipollini onions. For dessert, the warm Granny Smith apple financier with rhubarb ice cream and marsala cream is a real treat.
The Gates Restaurant
Another fine dining restaurant located just 10-minutes from Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley and serving up the best dry-aged steaks in the Hunter Valley is The Gates Restaurant. Step into a world of elegant degustation menus and award-winning wines served with a generous helping of beautiful views over Leogate Estate. Open for lunch from 11:30 AM to 3:30 PM and dinner from 6 PM to 9 PM seven days a week, reservations are a must.
On the menu at The Gates Restaurant, you’ll find entrees of Sydney rock oysters, caramelised onion and goat’s cheese tart, and dry-aged beef eye fillet tartare. Mains include manuka honey glazed pork belly, confit duck leg and braised lamb shank. For something that is a little bit extra-special, the 1KG dry-aged rib on the bone for two and the 6-week dry-aged Scotch fillet are melt-in-the-mouth dreamy. Finish everything off with the aromatic white wine-poached pears or the caramel bombe Alaska. A 5-course degustation menu is also available, as are a variety of vegetarian dishes
Nestled amongst the gum trees and grape vines on the outskirts of Pokolbin at Spicers Vineyard Estate is one of the region’s best-kept secrets, Restaurant Botanica. Indulge in cuisine with impeccable provenance, perfectly paired with award-winning wines and focussing on sustainability and locally-sourced ingredients. For lunch and dinner, choose between the 3-course table d’hôte and 3-course vegan menus. For dinners, 5-course tasting menus and an extensive wine list are ready to be enjoyed.
As an example, the 5-course tasting menu begins with succulent lobster in a steamed-milk bun with citrus mayo and dill. Following on, Kingfish ceviche, finger lime and citrus and Heirloom tomato, stracciatella, strawberry and balsamic are served. A hearty sirloin with peppercorn, parsnip, and horseradish continues the theme, while Raspberry and almond tart with pickled rhubarb and vanilla ice cream finish. Wine pairing with each course ensures you get to enjoy a well-rounded flavour profile.
Lovedale Bar + Grill
When you’re looking for great food and local sips that come with a slightly more casual and relaxed atmosphere, there’s nowhere better than Lovedale Bar + Grill. Celebrating the best of the local region with delectable bar meals, local wines, Sydney Brewery beer on tap and welcoming vibes, drop by for a drink and a bite to eat.
For lovers of the golden drop, you can sample fresh beer from the Sydney Brewery, which is located onsite. Grab a paddleboard and a few sharing plates, signature dishes and grill favourites and settle in for an evening of great food. For vegetarians, there’s also a dedicated menu featuring classic alternatives such as the mixed mushroom burger, jackfruit nachos and the Vego pizza.
From coffee to cakes, and dinner to cocktails, pull up a seat and get ready to enjoy mouthfuls of flavour in a fun and relaxed setting.
Book a stay at Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley
Home to award-winning bars and restaurants, an 18-hole championship golf course, indulgent day spa, beautiful swimming pool, and luxuriously comfortable accommodation, explore the best that the Hunter Valley has to offer from the region’s premier resort.
Choose between 417 stunning villas, rooms and suites with beautiful views over the resort grounds. Enjoy luxurious facilities and amenities, award-winning dining and amazing activities right on the doorstep. Ready to check out the best fine dining in Hunter Valley? All you need to do is check in to Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley
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