Travel

4 Gourmet Adventures Every Food Lover Needs To Tick Off In Tasmania

By Amy Mills
25th Feb 2021

Shene Estate Distillery Tasmania.

Australia’s smallest state is known as the Apple Isle but—as any good foodie will know—Tasmania has far more than just apples. There’s an abundance of fresh produce and gourmet delicacies grown and handcrafted on the island, as well as incredible fresh seafood from Tassie's cold, clean waters.

The fine-dining scene is fantastic but Tasmania’s real point of difference—and appeal—is the short distance between paddock/trawler and plate, and the chance to meet the passionate distillers, winemakers, chefs, fishermen, providores and fromagers who call this community-minded, culinary haven home.

Jaw-dropping scenery aside, trust us when we say Tasmania’s food scene is worth the trip alone. Here are four of our favourite authentic gourmet adventures in Tasmania to add to your bucket list.

Skip Between Cellar Doors

When the toughest decision of the trip is which of Tasmania’s four wine trails to take, we know we're onto a good thing. Pick a trail that sparks your interest (spoiler, they’re all amazing) and hit the road to sample cool-climate wines in cellar doors ranging from convict-built stables to sleek designer digs. The Tamar Valley, Tassie’s oldest winegrowing region, is renowned for pinot noir and its sparkling wines, due to its similar growing conditions to Champagne in France. The Tamar Valley Wine Trail links almost 30 cellar doors, including House of Arras, Josef Chromy VineyardTamar Ridge and Holm Oak. The beautiful east coast is home to boutique producers and picturesque wineries linked by the East Coast Wine Trail. Take in staggering views overlooking Freycinet National Park from Devil's Corner Cellar Door, or taste top drops at family-run wineries including Gala EstateFreycinet Vineyard and Spring Vale.

A guest gazes at the scenery at Devil's Corner Cellar Door.

Devil's Corner Cellar Door

Visit A Farm Gate And Meet The Makers

The real beauty of visiting Tassie is the opportunity to slow down, savour in the tastes of the island and meet its passionate producers, providores, winemakers, distillers and food artisans. Our advice? Arrive hungry. In the south, wind through farms, orchards and cideries on a slow drive in the Huon Valley. In the north west, feed your appetite on the self-guided Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail. Among a rollcall of regional producers on the trail, taste Tassie’s unique leatherwood honey at Blue Hills Honey, pop into Cradle Coast Olives for oil and visit Mount Gnomon Farm, known for its focus on ethical farming and high quality smallgoods. On the Tasmanian Whisky Trail, learn how Tasmania’s only triple-distilled whisky is produced at the convict-built Shene Estate & Distillery. And drop in for a pint of hand-pumped ale or cider and tastings at Two Metre Tall Farmhouse Ale & Cider, which wild-ferments its own farm-grown ingredients. 

Don Waders And Tuck Into Freshly-Shucked Oysters

A visit to Tasmania is not complete without sampling delicious, creamy Pacific oysters shucked straight from the sea. They call it Great Oyster Bay for a reason, and the oysters come fresh from the baskets to the cafe deck at Freycinet Marine Farm. Don waders for a two-hour tour of the farm with the knowledgeable guides from Oyster Bay Tours where guests can venture into the waters and harvest oysters straight off the rack for an authentic oyster farm tasting experience—pure bliss.

There are farm-fresh oysters served straight from the leases at Get Shucked on Bruny Island, and also at Barilla Bay Oyster Farm, close to Hobart airport. Take an hour-long tour of the Barilla Bay farm before long-lunching at its on-site restaurant, or simply take away a dozen from the shop and continue on your oyster-eating odyssey.

An oyster farmer wades in the water as they chat to guests.

Freycinet Marine Farm

Check Out These Food Markets

Fill your baskets for a memorable gourmet picnic from one of the island’s many farmers’ markets, and mingle with producers, makers and friendly locals. Every Sunday morning in Hobart’s CBD, Bathurst Street is transformed into Farm Gate Market, a bustling gathering of producers selling everything from fresh berries and pickles to heirloom apples and sourdough. It’s a weekend ritual for Hobartians, and it maintains its decade-long philosophy: if you can’t eat it, drink it, grow it or meet the producer, you won’t find it here.

Get a delicious snapshot of northern Tasmanian life and flavours at the vibrant Harvest Launceston Community Farmers' Market in the heart of this northern city on Saturdays. Meet the people behind family-run businesses including Hazelbrae Hazelnuts, Lentara Grove and Seven Sheds Brewery. Stock up and learn more about the region’s food culture from passionate local producers. 

The Penguin Undercover Market—how can we not visit a town with a name like Penguin!—is the largest of its kind in the state and boasts more than 50 stalls selling vintage treasures, ceramics and fresh local produce.

The best way to immerse yourself in a new place? Through food, of course! And in Tasmania, you're never too far from the source. Pack your bags, it’s time to forage and feast. 

Image credit: Samuel Shelley (hero image of whisky tasting at Shene Estate’s roadside stall), Lisa Kuilenburg (Devil's Corner), Andrew Wilson (Freycinet Marine Farm)

Editor’s note: This article is sponsored by Tasmania — Come Down For Air and proudly endorsed by Urban List. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make Urban List possible. Click here for more information on our editorial policy.

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