When A mentioned she was interested in heading down to Margaret River for a cycling event, it quickly evolved into a food and wine weekend in the region. While A and her friend Lisa were busy cycling around Margaret River on the Saturday, Charmain, Karen and I visited a few local wineries after an excellent breakfast at Morries Anytime. After our busy mornings, we met at Xanadu Winery for a leisurely and delicious lunch.
The restaurant at Xanadu Winery features an European influenced menu and changes seasonally, due to the local produce available. It was quickly decided by the group that we’d opt for the brilliantly priced three course option for $60, with a small additional charge for a few items on the menu (the scallops or black angus, for example). We each chose an entrée, main and dessert each.
Our table left the wine ordering to Karen, who is the oenologist at Xanadu. She chose the 2012 Stevens Road chardonnay for our table to start with – an award winning (and fantastic!) chardonnay that was named the Best Single Vineyard Dry White Wine at National Wine Show of Australia 2014 and the Best Single Vineyard Estate White at Margaret River Wine Show 2014.
The second item was cauliflower croquettes with sweet corn aioli, made in the traditional style with béchamel sauce. These were perfectly golden and crispy on the outside with a great flavour combination of sweet corn and cauliflower.
The three course menu provides the option of sharing the Xanadu board ($37) between two for the entrée, which A and I decided to do. The Xanadu board featured chicken liver paté with granola and truffle oil, confit and smoked duck terrine with pickled beetroot and glazed pork belly with beetroot relish. When the board arrived, I was immediately impressed by the size – this could have easily been an entrée for four. I’ve had pork belly numerous times before and never understood the hype – until I tried this version. The glazed pork belly was caramelised and tender, making it ridiculously moreish. The chicken liver paté was the perfect consistency and went perfectly with the freshly baked brioche. Everything on this board was worthy of being there and absolutely perfect – there were no negatives to this dish.
For my main, I chose the seasonal fresh fish with white beans, wild fennel, green olives and a mussel vinaigrette. The snapper was fresh and perfectly cooked, but the standouts were the white beans and wild fennel. I loved that this dish was light but full of flavour.
After our mains, we were able to have a little food break before our desserts – a lovely aspect of a leisurely lunch. I’m regularly disappointed when I dine out for lunch if I feel hurried, but at Xanadu it wasn’t an issue and we didn’t feel rushed at all. I really appreciated this aspect of dining at Xanadu.
For dessert, A, Karen and Charmain ordered the rhubarb with apple, mascarpone, gingernut and friend. The general consensus was that this was a delightful dessert.
Before I had chosen my main, I knew which dessert option I would order – the chocolate cake with banana, salted caramel and peanut butter ice cream. This dessert would have to be one of the best I’ve had in years – everything was executed perfectly and it featured a winning flavour combination.
I can’t tell you how much we all enjoyed this amazing lunch at Xanadu. If you are in the Margaret River area and looking for a fantastic lunch, make sure you head to Xanadu. The prices are more than reasonable and the food is superb. Overall it was a great dining experience that the whole table enjoyed. I’m looking forward to returning soon!