This is my ultimate destination for my birthday every year, depending on whether I’m in the Southern Hemisphere or not. Luckily this year I was.
This time we went for the 3 courses with local wine pairing, starting off with a sparkling rose in the garden overlooking the valley in the foothills of Mount Canobolas. Paolo was convinced he was in Tuscany.
I am totally not a food or wine critic, so I’m not going to bore you with intricate details of what I ate and drank – it’s a One Chef Hat (SMH Good Food Guide 2014, 2013, 2012), Gourmet Traveller voted it ‘Best Regional Restaurant’ (2014, 2013, 2012) and Shaun Arantz was awarded Australia’s Best Regional Chef in 2012 (Country Style Magazine). It’s better than good.
But the absolute best thing about Racine Restaurant in the rolling hills of the La Colline vineyard is THIS PLACE HAS A HELIPAD FOLKS. My nephews and I have previously sat gobsmacked watching diners fly in for lunch from Sydney, landing in the paddock area right in front of this gorgeous jasmine and rose-drenched ‘tinshed’.
After this year’s visit, I have decided next time I am totally arriving by helicopter to eat three courses of dessert paired with three bottles of the amazing Coffee Hill ‘Zinful’ Zinfandal. It was very much OMFG.
And now that I’m a local, I’m going to start going more often.
UPDATE:: I’ve also discovered the Coffee Hill cellar door at The Millthorpe Wine Centre at the historic Millthorpe railway station. Chef Shaun Arantz is the only person in town at the moment with access to ‘Zinful’ & has paired it with his caramel parfait. The rest of us have to wait until Australia Day for access to bottles of this stuff, I’ve already baggsed my spot in the queue.