1. Sip cider in the Apple Valley
At Willie Smith’s Apple Shed in the Huon Valley you can find out all about Tasmania’s apple-filled past. Four generations of growers carved out a living here, beginning with Willie, planting his first tree in 1888. Explore the museum, sip organic mulled cider to live tunes on a Friday evening and order from a rustic menu packed with local fare.
2. Taste the cheesy difference
At Pyengana Dairy Company, tucked away in the lush hills of north-east Tasmania, they have a secret contraption to make sure they have the happiest cows on earth – it’s a giant cow backscratcher. At Pyengana, they’ve been perfecting traditional cheese-making techniques for more than a century. Just down the road is St Columba Falls, and if you didn’t already know, Tassie’s waterfalls are pumping in winter.
3. Cut into the best steak of your life
A steakhouse in a former art deco butchery shop in Launceston – it’s an apt locale for much-needed comfort food and the best steak ever. The Black Cow Bistro specialises in premium Tasmanian grass fed, free range, dry aged beef. Perhaps a Cape Grim rib eye on the bone, aged 40 days, takes your interest?
4. Hone your cooking skills
Curious about how to milk a goat? At the Agrarian Kitchen in Tasmania’s south, you’ll find yourself doing just that under the watchful eye of Rodney Dunn, as he shows you how to conjure up delicious meals. This farm-based cooking school is housed in a 19th century schoolhouse, ideal for the shared feast that follows paddock-to-plate learning.
5. Gourmet walking and eating
Taste.Walk.Talk invites you to a taste of Launceston’s foodie hot spots – from lolly makers to pastry chefs, restaurateurs to cider makers. All you need do is walk and eat and talk. Gourmania is the island’s southern version of a guided tour through town with a knowledgeable foodie friend. On Saturday’s, the tour includes a saunter through Salamanca Market, pin pointing the best local produce.
6. To market to tasty market
Every Sunday, Hobart’s Farm Gate Market hums with locals, farmers and producers. Same goes for the Harvest Market in Launceston where an inner-city car park is transformed into a bustling farm gate affair, featuring everything from truffles and organic dairy to artisan pastries, berries and ciders. Back in Hobart at Salamanca Market, you only have to hear the call of ‘apples, apples, apples’ to know we’ve got your fresh produce covered.
7. Foodie road tripping
The Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail calls for a relaxed drive peppered with over 40 delicious stops across Tasmania’s north-west. Think craft beer at Seven Sheds, cloth-matured cheddar at Ashgrove Cheese, smooth cool-climate pinot at Ghost Rock Vineyard and perhaps a hearty salmon burger at Tasmania’s – and likely the world’s – only ginseng and salmon farm, 41 South Tasmania. Then there’s Southern Wild Distillery, where distiller George will take you from mountains to meadows to the ocean through his gin flavours.
8. Crafty ales
Looking for a boutique brewery? We have micro-breweries powered by passionate brewers sprinkled across the island. At Two Metres Tall, meet a brewer who happens to be two metres tall, serving up ales in his Derwent Valley paddock bar. Seven Sheds in Railton is a tiny outfit that’s claimed big notoriety for their Kentish Ale and wintery brews. On the east coast there’s Ironhouse Brewery. In fact, our list could go on forever – the Hobart Brewing Company, Shambles, Little Rivers, Bruny Island Beer Company… To find them all, the Tasmanian Beer Trail is a great compass.
9. Cellar door hopping in the Tamar Valley
What happens in the Tamar Valley during winter? The answer is lots. It’s the ideal time to meet winemakers and even taste some brand new releases as space is cleared at cellar doors for new wines. Pinot is an all-weather winter favourite and Tasmania happens to produce some of the best in the world. Try a 2015 Ninth Island at Pipers Brook Vineyard, paired with lunch. Make the trip from east to west Tamar Valley across the kanamaluka/Tamar River and stop at Moores Hill Wine in Sidmouth. The winery has a roaring fire, a cuddly dog named Otto and beautiful wines to match the warm welcome.
10. Indulge in Tassie’s dining scene
In Hobart, head for a floating building for dinner – Brooke Street Pier and Aloft Restaurant – the ambient lighting and candles are perfect for winter dining. In the north at Geronimo Apertivo Bar and Restaurant you can enjoy purely seasonal fare. Most of what is served is grown on the family farm including beef, lamb and wintry vegetables. On the east coast, retreat to the log fire at Freycinet Lodge for their Tasmanian wine, whisky or gin tasting experience then move onto a menu inspired by the finest regional produce at The Bay Restaurant.