Don Dunstan, South Australia’s premier in the ’60s and ’70s, was a
serious foodie. He relaxed liquor licensing laws, extended
pub-drinking hours and even authored a cookbook while in
Dunstan remains an inspiration in Adelaide, the Texas-sized
Australian state with a serious emphasis on superior food and wine.
In this city of 1 million, your clients will dine as spectacularly
as they do in Hong Kong or New York, on meals prepared with
ingredients produced less than an hour away. They’ll visit the
breathtaking Barossa wine region and taste wines as impressive as
those from France or California.
For clients with a discerning palate, this is paradise with a
continental twist. Whether you book your clients into a big hotel,
like the Hyatt Regency or Hilton, or a boutique venue, like the
Medina Grand in Adelaide’s old Treasury (the swimming pool is in
what was the vault), they won’t be far from anything. The central
city area is a mile square and laid out in a grid. There’s greenery
galore, super shopping, a modern art museum and, everywhere you
look, attractive people on bistro terraces, laughing, eating and
Adelaide’s main foodie event is the Central Market. Since 1869,
purveyors have been flogging every imaginable food item here from
homemade Italian prosciutto to delectable Lebanese pomegranate and
nut spread. Whether professional chef or aficionado, this is where
tout Adelaide shops. Recommend chef Mark Gleeson’s private 1½-hour
tour to your clients.
An hour north of Adelaide, your clients will be floored by the
Barossa’s European vibe. The tiny towns dotting the rolling hills
of Australia’s premier wine destination are exactly as they were
when this region was settled in the mid-1800s by English, Germans
and dissident Prussian Lutherans. Every hamlet is full of butchers
and bakers who have been creating delicacies in the same manner for
generations. Each Barossa restaurant is better than the next,
though barr-Vinum in Angaston would be hard to top.
If your clients aren’t comfortable driving on the left, especially
while wine tasting, contact Ralf Hadzic, whose company, Life Is A
Cabernet, offers chauffeured tours.
No trip to the Barossa is complete without a visit to Maggie
Beer’s Farm Shop. Beer, a larger-than-life, award-winning
Australian chef, is a cross between Alice Waters and Julia
For overnight stays, the American-owned Pepper’s Hermitage has
comfortable rooms with vineyard views and one of the area’s finest
And, if your clients are in Barossa on a Saturday, tell them not
to miss the farmer’s market, if only to taste the chocolate
croissants. They’re even better than the ones in Paris.
Central Market Tour
Life Is A Caberet