Friday, December 23, 2022
The very best casual dining in the Margaret River region
Even though the Margaret River region is well-known and revered for trendy food and upmarket winery estates, the region overall remains pretty relaxed.
There are plenty of cafes, breweries, and wineries where you can come straight in from the beach; there are ones a little more glam where you sit amongst beautifully manicured gardens; and then there are those big open venues perfect for spirited group gatherings. And you don’t even need to book at most – just roll up, ready to feast!
Check out the delightful dozen for a perfectly chilled out summer dining experience. Also note, most establishments on the list accept pets, but best to call ahead.
A postcard-perfect winery, Aravina Estate is more than just a pretty face. There’s fantastic food and entertainment, and the estate is a must visit during their annual Summer Festival: Aperol cocktails, a beer taphouse, pizza bar, live music on the lawn, and even helicopter joy rides!
Caves House Hotel
Caves House Hotel is an icon of the region. The 120-year-old venue offers a summer garden cinema, live music, and pizzas on the deck. If you want something a tad more sophisticated, you can always dine on the terrace overlooking the heritage-listed gardens, or experience one of the fantastically decorated indoor dining rooms for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even high tea.
Eagle Bay Brewing Co
Award-winning brews and sprawling views, a spot at Eagle Bay Brewing Co usually requires a booking but you can always try your luck on the day. A spacious venue with an equally spacious outdoor area, the modern Australian menu is very generous and has something for everyone. After lunch, drive down to the turquoise bay for a walk.
Perfectly suited to its coastal location between Dunsborough and Busselton, Flametree’s cellar door is styled as a chic Hamptons beach house. Dig into a tasting platter on the verandah, or roll out a picnic rug to laze about on the green grass with the trees shading you from the late afternoon sun.
Hamelin Bay Wines
Flanked by majestic tall trees, it doesn’t get better than stunning Hamelin Bay Wines. Order a ploughman’s platter and eat in the sunshine, or dine in comfort indoors. We recommend a dose of childhood nostalgia with the homemade ice cream sandwich on a hot summer’s day. It’s only a short lunch period, so make sure you book ahead to nab a spot.
Happs Wines offers those idyllic afternoons perfect for a group of girlfriends, with the leafy gardens the ideal surroundings to pick through a ‘build your own picnic hamper’. Choose from a wide range of delectable local cheeses, charcuterie, chocolates, and nougat, and grab one of the supplied grazing boards and picnic rugs for your comfort and convenience.
You’d best reserve a table at this ultra-popular eatery. Meelup Farmhouse is snug as a bug in Eagle Bay’s undulating countryside, and is totally Instagram-worthy. Have a tasty brunch before heading down to beautiful Castle Rock, Meelup Beach or Eagle Bay; catch up with your loved ones over a long cocktail lunch; or order a picnic hamper and find a comfy spot on the lawn sofas.
Providore Margaret River
Voted one of Australia’s top 100 gourmet experiences by Australian Traveller, Providore really is a destination in and of itself. You’ll find it in the foodie heaven that is Metricup, next door to Margaret River Chocolate Factory, Providore offers delicious lunch options and impossibly delish products for home. Trust us, bring a bag or box, because you’ll be loading up.
‘The Ridge’ is a great little taphouse in a refurbished 1930s home in the centre of town, just a few metres from Busselton Jetty. With 25 beers on tap and an excellent beer garden, drop by for a cheerful afternoon under the umbrellas. If it’s burgers and beers you seek, you’re in luck because they’ve teamed up with Margaret River Burger Co.
If you want the friendly pub experience with truly incredible wine (600 wines!) and beer (16 on tap and more than 60 bottled beers!) plus hearty tavern meals and great live music, you must head to Settler’s Tavern, smack bang in the heart of Margaret River. It’s an institution that’s been here since the 1970s and still guarantees a good time for all ages.
Swings & Roundabouts
Swings & Roundabouts in Yallingup is the perfect venue for a grown-up Sunday Session. Gaze out upon the vineyards and pristine bushland, sip some full-bodied vino, crunch into a hot arancini, and share a pizza with friends. There’s even a beer van and an ice cream vendor to round out that perfect summery day. Plus a fantastic nature-play style playground for the kiddliewinks.
White Elephant Cafe
Sandy feet and windswept hair after a day at the beach? This is where it’s at. Recently renovated, White Elephant Cafe is the ultimate casual beachside venue with its doors flung open and the cool ocean breeze wafting through. Drop by for breakfast or lunch, or grab a yummy smoothie between swims and sunning yourself on the sand. There’s also plenty of healthy and vegan/vego options too.
Cheers to casual summer dining. Browse our portfolio of luxury holiday homes in the Margaret River region.
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