Traveling just for the sake of a good meal might not be as odd as it sounds. This is especially true in places that offer a wide variety of dishes, like Australia. The country is so vast, that each of its territories and regions has a unique cuisine that you just have to try. In fact, your palate can be the perfect excuse to go traveling and get to know new places and regions, all the while tasting the best wines and dining at the finest restaurants.
If you are wondering where this gastro-nomadic journey should start, we offer 5 places on the Australian continent for a passionate foodie traveler like you.
1. Noosa, Queensland
Noosa is perhaps better known nation-wide for its national park and scenic beaches, but that does not mean that you cannot grab a bite here. Most of the food joints are actually bars that offer food alongside standard alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. There is even a Japanese restaurant, as well as a restaurant where you can eat morsels of different food just to taste it. Of course, no offer would be complete without a pizzeria but the local specialty is by far mud crabs cooked three ways and snapper curry. There is also seafood and organic food for people who appreciate a good, healthy meal.
2. Melbourne, Victoria
Moving onto urban areas, Melbourne has the largest variety of different foods in a single in all of Australia. The good thing about such a large metropolitan area is the fact that food is great both downtown and in the suburbs. Another advantage of Melbourne’s cuisine is the fact that many bars and restaurant are open 24/7, so you can visit them even if you feel peckish at 2 o’clock in the morning. If we had to decide on the culinary hub of the city, then that would definitely be Victoria Street in Richmond. You can find different restaurants along the strip to satisfy your hunger at any time of day and night. Once you are full, you simply must try any of the local brands of draft beer that almost every restaurant, bar, and pub serve.
3. Hunter Valley, New South Wales
Regionally famous Hunter Valley is located north of Sydney and its biggest city is Central Coast. However, unlike the aforementioned Melbourne, this is a rural region that has been synonymous with wine production since the 19th century. In fact, this is the most famous wine region in all of Australia. Semillon and Shiraz are the most frequent brand of wine found here but tourists don’t just visit for the great wine. The surrounding nature is breathtaking as every square inch of greenery is worth more in Australia than anywhere on the planet. If we add affordable Hunter Valley accommodation to the equation, we get the perfect getaway for wine lovers and those are about to fall in love with this Aussie nectar of gods.
4. Victorian High Country, Victoria
Another region in Australia that is known for vineyards that crisscross the luscious green landscape is the Victorian High Country in the eponymous state. Just a four-hour drive from Melbourne will get you to this region where the cuisine resembles Naples in Italy. It’s all about pasta, vegetables, and spices. For instance, burrata and cherry tomatoes with fresh basil are adorned with locally grown olive oil as they make an excellent side dish. When it comes to meat, raw ham and figs go excellently together and salami, horseradish, and smoked salmon are seasoned with olives and served with crusty bread. In the morning, you can have coffee at any of the cozy hotels that can be found along the side of the road that offers affordable prices.
5. Hobart, Tasmania
Finally, we venture south from the Australian mainland to the island of Tasmania. Known worldwide as the natural habitat of the Tasmanian devil, immortalized by the Warner Bros. cartoon character of the same name, the island of Tasmania is a hidden tourist and culinary gem. Although mainlanders regard it as the “Texas of Australia” because of its untamed wilderness, its capital Hobart can boast exquisite dining venues. Homemade custard or butter are bound to find their way onto your table and for the main dish, you can order the meat of any of the heritage pig species still bred here. You can skip chocolate for dessert because there are so many types of forest fruit that you simply must try. This exotic palette of flavors expands to the offer of ice-creams that you cannot leave Tasmania without tasting them.
Italian style food served with some great wine would be the typical experience an Australian foodie lover can expect in his or her travels. However, the whole point of becoming a food tourist is the synergy of different flavors different regions of the country have to offer. For the ultimate thrill, try to eat breakfast at one place, have lunch in another, and then top it all off by a dinner in a totally different location; all in a single day!