Biodynamically driven fine-dining in one of the country’s most revered wineries.
There’s a warmth to the experience at Cullen, a kind of laid-back camaraderie that gives its rustic room instant appeal. This is a room casual enough to bring a well-behaved kid or two, but elegant – and delicious – enough to host a birthday or other special occasion.
A tartlet is layered with two kinds of artichoke – Jerusalem and globe – as well as stracciatella and truffle velouté, for an exceedingly decadent few bites.
People are gathered at the bar like it’s a neighbourhood joint and not one of the better restaurants and tasting rooms in a world-class wine region; service is all relaxed welcome rather than stiff formality. It’s appropriate for the wines being served here, which are biodynamic and expressive of the land on which they’re grown. Chef Ben Day extends that philosophy by way of a biodynamic garden that feeds the menu. A tartlet is layered with two kinds of artichoke – Jerusalem and globe – as well as stracciatella and truffle velouté, for an exceedingly decadent few bites.
Line-caught fish of the day sits in a deeply flavoured sauce made of trout roe, and is garnished with tender calamari and purple kale. A burnt honey mousse with poached fruit miraculously channels the flavours of a fantastic plum pudding using native ingredients. A sweet finish to stay long in the memory.