The best eateries you may not have heard of in Margaret River
Published Thursday, December 12, 2019 in Talking Local
There’s no doubt that the South West of Western Australia has had the food gods smile upon it.
There are many wonderful wineries, fine dining restaurants, farmers’ markets, coffee shops, ice creameries, and chocolate makers flourishing in the region; these are perennial favourites and continue to attract well-deserved attention. But what about the newer players in town? Or those hidden down that quiet street, dishing up mouth-watering fare to those in the know?
Miki’s Open Kitchen
Modern Japanese? Degustation? Yes please.
There are two sittings per night, with four selections available, including a kids’ degustation. The menus change daily but we will say this: this is not Japanese cuisine you’re used to. This is modern and creative food that will take your tastebuds on an adventure. For example, you might tuck into tempura mango and wasabi yoghurt; Shark Bay crab with radish, tomato gel and avocado; or maybe a soy-braised pork croquette. You’ll be back time and time again, we promise.
Note that there’s no room for prams inside and it’s best to book ahead.
Where: Margaret River
This is the real deal, with pizza made by an Italian pizza school Master Instructor, Ivan, pizza flour from Italy, and authentic cooking in a wood-fired oven. And Pizzica is just how an Italian pizza café should be: warm, inviting, with great service, and everyone enjoying themselves. And, of course, fantastic pizza. Order yourself a glass of wine or a cocktail and sit back and enjoy the atmosphere.
Note that they also offer takeaway, for those days when you want to cosy up at home or even take a pizza for a picnic outdoors.
Where: Margaret River
It is said that the best things in life are the simple things. We think sipping a great wine and sampling morsels of beautifully presented food falls into this category.
This winery is kicking goals all over the place with its spectacular wines. It was awarded the 2020 Halliday Best Value Winery, and both the 2017 Sauvage Sauvignon Blanc and 2018 Discovery Chardonnay were recently featured in Ray Jordan’s Top 100 Whites.
Make sure to order a charcuterie or cheese board, and plonk yourself out in the grassed area looking out into the rows of vines.
Yallingup may be the home of surf but it’s also home to Chow’s Table, a Chinese-Malay joint that is serving up some of the best meals in the region. While the South West was never known as a hotspot for Asian food, the last few years have turned this on its head.
Headed by chef Malcolm Chow, who has worked at some of Australia’s finest establishments, including Vue de monde and Tetsuya’s, Yallingup is truly spoiled with Chow’s Table. You will be over the moon with the light, bright atmosphere and the fine dining-standard food.
And order the dumplings. You can thank us later.
Where do we start? There is a little bit of everything here. The honey store has limited edition real, raw honey for tastings and purchase. Try the peppermint honey for something different.
It’s not all about honey. Barnyard 1978 has a gorgeous vineyard-filled property for lounging about and meeting the resident wildlife. You can watch the pasta-making, sample the wine, and, of course, have a peaceful country breakfast or lunch.
Our pick? While America’s culinary gift of chicken and waffles is admittedly a revelation, try this contemporary version: waffles with crispy duck confit, fried egg, pineapple relish, and mustard maple.
Wild Hop Brewing Company
This family-owned brewery serves up food just as good as the carefully crafted beer. Sit out on the deck looking out at the lake with a nice cold beer in hand –
or even sample a couple of different ones on the beer tasting paddles (all come with moreish jalapeño and truffle oil popcorn). Our tip: try the latest innovative brew, such as lager brewed with wildflower honey and infused with Earl Grey tea.
Wild Hop is pet-friendly, family-friendly, and a great place to dine even if you’re not a big beer drinker. Get along to “Hoppy Hour” from 4 to 5pm, Monday to Thursday, for a good value afternoon.
Young French couple, Fanny and Thibaut Lidou, are the duo behind this beautiful little café. They are making a name for themselves with their crêpes – in fact, there are more than 15 options on the menu so if you love an authentic, melt-in-the-mouth crêpe, you must visit Bistro Breton.
There’s plenty more on the menu aside from crêpes. Lunch and dinner showcases the classic French combination of simplicity and flair with dishes such as duck confit and mussels. Here you can try the latter with blue cheese sauce, shallots and parsley, or with cider sauce, shallots and bacon.
The Good Egg
With its funky industrial interior (impressive giant wall blackboard included), this café and workspace looks like a city hangout but it’s actually right in the middle of friendly Busselton.
Fitting in with its aesthetics, The Good Egg serves up brekkie and lunch dishes with a difference. Tuck into chai-spiced French toast or green shakshuka, on the menu alongside staples such as avocado on toast. For lunch, enjoy a Korean chicken burger, Cajun jackfruit tacos or Cambodian beef curry. And a win for the late risers, the breakfast menu is served all day on weekends.
Plan your epic food adventure in our South West, Margaret River region, and make sure you visit at least a few on this list.
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