When the weather’s wet and cold in South West Australia, there’s nothing better we like to do than get out for a long lazy Sunday lunch with friends and family.
Especially at a wine estate with great views, overhead gas heaters and a menu to make the angels weep.
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Geographe wine region
Hackersley Wine Estate and Restaurant is in the Geographe wine region, about 30 minutes from Bunbury, 11 kms from the small town of Dardanup on the Ferguson Road in the lovely Ferguson Valley, which at this time of year is greener than the very lush fields of Irish meadows.
What to expect
You can expect to get here after a two hour drive from Perth, and you may want to stop for a glass of mulled wine or a cleansing ale at The Moody Cow micro brewery along the way, as our friends did.
But it’s the food you’ll love most of all at Hackersley. Five courses for $65 (2014 prices) with free wine tasting at the cellar door to get things moving along nicely (Wine ranges from around $26 to $26 a bottle).
Here’s what you might expect … oh and the menu changes about every 6 weeks.
Venison beetroot amuse bouche (suggested wine: SBS or Merlot). The venison was tender and succulent and the beetroot made a nice tart foil to the slightly sweeter taste of venison.
Pea and ham soup with garlic bread and pork crackling crumble (suggested wine: Verdelho) The pea and ham soup got the thumbs up from our grown up offspring. The pork crackling crumble got us all talking.
Barramundi with prawn curry sauce, scallop, chinese cabbage, and curried wild rice (suggested wine: SBS or Cebernet Merlot). The barramundi was my husband’s favourite course. The crispy curried wild rice had us all guessing and the prawn curry sauce was flavoursome without being overpowering.
Fillet of beef with braised red onion, paris mash, capsicum sabayon, red wine and bitter chocolate sauce (suggested wine: Semillon or Merlot) Ok, this was my favourite as the red wine and bitter chocolate sauce was so unusual, and the fillet was cooked just right – a little bit rare but nicely sealed on the outside.
Caramelised pear tart with apple mousse, caradamom crumble, pear and almond dacquoise (suggested wine: Sauvignon Blanc) Nothing not to love about the pudding.
Five Things we loved about Hackersley Wine Estate and Restaurant
1. The service is great. Cellar door staff knew their stuff and the restaurant staff were charming.
2. The setting is really pretty … overlooking sylvan fields with sheep grazing and a large dam below the restaurant.
3. The decked area would be wonderful al fresco in summer, while in winter it’s enclosed by thick see through plastic and warmed by overhead gas heaters.
4. The food is inventive, interesting, and definitely not something I’d readily be able to whip together for a Sunday lunch at home.
5. The Hackersley wines are superb. We especially enjoyed the Cabernet Merlot and the Verdelho.
Coming up at Hackersley
Hackersley’s winter degustation dinner
date: saturday 12 july
cost: $125, very limited seating, further details to be announced
African drumming workshop morning
date: friday 8 august
rsvp: wednesday 6 august
cost: $25, incl morning tea
info: facilitated by peter russell, beginners are encouraged to come along to this fun drumming workshop based on west african, samba and middle eastern rhythms
Hackersley is open Thursday – Sunday 10am – 4pm