1. A hunting we will go
Journey to a place where wintry frosts work wonders across more than 50 hectares of bold oak trees. At Truffles of Tasmania near Deloraine, the winter truffle season runs from the end of May through to September. This is your cue to dress in all your cosy winter layers. The truffle hunters will be eagerly awaiting your arrival. Truffle dogs are not only cute, they have a keen nose for rare Perigord truffles. Keep them in close company! Before you head off on your next gourmet adventure, tuck some truffles away for later at farm gate prices.
2. Art and epicurean extremes
Mona has a smorgasbord of out-of-this-world experiences for gourmet gluttons. Learn about wine at a Moorilla wine tasting in the barrel room. Feed your hunger at the Source Restaurant where the focus is on local and seasonal fare. Or for something a little different, sit down and strap yourself in at Mona’s newest bar and restaurant, Faro, where plates are shared and feral pigs’ ice-encased eye balls dress up your margarita. Go the whole hog and treat yourself to ‘Art + Dinner’ and explore James Turrell’s Weight of Darkness throughout dinner.
3. From the air, to the paddock, to the plate
Begin your Aerial Paddock to Plate Tour with a luxury flight over the north-west coast of Tasmania to land at Woolnorth for an in-depth tour of the farming operations of the Van Diemen’s Land Company, Woolnorth Wind Farms and Cape Grim. Your tour concludes with a local gourmet paddock-to-plate spread with a menu highlighting seasonal, regional delicacies matched with the Zdar range from Josef Chromy Wines and served in the historic precinct at Woolnorth. Think Cape Grim Beef, Robbins Island Wagyu Beef, Bolduans Bay Oysters, and local seafood including crayfish, abalone and calamari.
4. Tickle your taste buds
The Red Feather Inn Cooking School provides a wealth of culinary knowledge via owner Lydia Nettlefold, her in-house chefs, and visiting guest chefs. They all have a passion for good food, the enjoyment of cooking and the quality of Tasmanian produce – and love sharing their knowledge with others. Learn the culinary tricks of the trade with like-minded foodies using locally sourced ingredients and you’ll soon be as passionate about Tasmanian produce as they are. Together with the Red Feather Inn luxury accommodation, this cooking school, just outside Launceston, is an experience to savour.
5. Settle into a gourmet sleepover
Fancy a wander with likeminded people and the promise of a sleepover? Bruny Island Long Weekend now hosts Winter Weekends. At the end of April they move from summer camp to winter lodge and it’s decadently cosy. Catering to your every winter desire, they’ll feed you heart-warming produce, wine and dine you, let you linger in steamy showers and then slip between crisp sheets. It’s off-the-grid with luxury in mind. Fill the larder as you collect cheese and drop into a private oyster lease to shuck and taste oysters straight from the ocean. At night, gather around the fire with a glass of pinot, watch as Tasmania’s nocturnal wildlife emerges at dusk and as darkness falls sit back and enjoy the stars, or if you’re lucky the ultimate Tassie sky show – the Aurora Australis.
6. Sip a voluptuous red
Pinot is an all-weather winter favourite and Tasmania happens to produce some of the best in the world. Voluptuous on the nose with a sweet edge, it might just even be the island’s most romantic drop. Try a 2015 Ninth Island Pinot Noir at Pipers Brook Vineyard, paired with lunch. Make the trip from east to west Tamar Valley across the kanamaluka / Tamar River to make a winter stop at Moores Hill Estate in Sidmouth. One of the few vineyards serving food as well as plonk. The winery has a roaring fire, cuddly dog named Otto and beautiful wines to match the warm welcome. There even Tassie whisky on offer here, along with hearty tasting plates of venison sausage, smoked quail, pate and salami.