From surf to cellar door and bush to brewery, Margaret River is one of Australia’s ultimate destinations for adventure-loving foodies.
With white sandy beaches, sparkling ocean, natural sea spas and pristine forests, it’s fair to say Margaret River (or ‘Margs’ if you’re a local) is jam-packed with natural beauty. But that’s not the only thing to love. Margaret River is home to some of Australia’s best winemakers, distillers, restaurants, brewers and food artisans. Fertile soils and a Mediterranean climate are a match made in heaven for growing grapes and seasonal produce.
When you’re done hitting up the beaches or exploring the coastal trails, take your pick of restaurants and cellar doors to relax and unwind. How about tasting your way through the Margaret River Chocolate Company? Don’t mind if we do. A delicious three-course dinner overlooking the vineyards? Why not. Or what about a gin blending glass at Margs’ very own ‘Ginversity’? Oh, go on then. Here are some of our favourite foodie experiences to enjoy in Margaret River.
Good food and refreshing beers in a stunning farm setting – what’s not to love? Beerfarm is all about making great beer and having a good time. They’re also big on sustainability, which somehow makes the beer taste even better. There’s a solid selection of craft lagers, ciders, ales and stouts to quench your thirst, as well as a tasty menu of big plates, light meals and savoury snacks. Pull up a chair in the open-air shed or lawn and tuck into spiced tamarind falafels, smoked Korean wings, fish tacos or chilli crab linguine. Craft beer connoisseurs might be interested in the brewery tour to see where the magic happens and learn some of the secrets behind Beerfarm’s tasty brews.
If you have a sweet tooth, you’re in for a treat (literally). As well as candy-inspired Mootown (sweet) wines, liqueurs and gins, you’ll also find a sweet shop selling all the old-school candy favourites. All beverages are lovingly made with locally sourced ingredients including Moscato, lemon gin, ginger gin and mango gin. GinaColada (pina colada gin) always goes down swimmingly. We recommend getting the tasting board to sample a bit of everything. Three Lily’s might not be as big as other distilleries in the area, but we think it’s a hidden gem.
Nestled among native peppermint trees and just a stone’s throw from the beach, Margaret River Distilling Co. is a prime spot for a tipple in the sun. Sip on a refreshing cocktail or sample different flavours with a craft spirit tasting paddle and accompanying garnishes. For the gin enthusiasts, you might be interested in the ‘Ginversity Experience’ where you’ll learn the ins and outs of gin-making and make your very own blend. They also serve pizzas and small plates in case you get peckish including whiskey BBQ chicken wings, baked garlic sourdough, pulled lamb on thyme chats and goat cheese salad.
The crew at Black Brewing Co. aren’t afraid to break the craft beer status quo. Think marshmallow milk stout, red rye IPA, coconut porter and other interesting flavours to surprise your palette. You can also enjoy their core range of ales, lagers and ciders, as well as a selection of gins from Black Brewing Co’s sister brand, Dune Distilling. Grab a table on the outdoor deck beside the lake, get yourself a pint or a tasting paddle, or treat yourself to some lunch. The menu features crowd-pleasing dishes like lamb shoulder tacos, harissa cauliflower couscous, and mushroom and parmesan croquettes.
If you find yourself getting fed up with wine in Margaret River (said no one ever) get yourself over to Bootleg. Bootleg Brewery prides itself on being “An oasis of beer in a desert of wine”, and we agree. What started out as a one-beer-brewery is now one of the region’s top spots for beer lovers. They produce award-winning ales, lagers, ciders and seasonal brews that you can enjoy in the South West’s biggest beer garden. The panoramic views of the lake and surrounding estate go down a treat with a cold one and a juicy burger, steak sandwich or parmi.
The Margaret River Farmers’ Market isn’t just a market, it’s a Saturday morning ritual here in Margs. Get your hands on local fruits, veggies, seafood and meat, as well as artisan bread, cheese, condiments and sweet treats. The produce here is as fresh as it gets, but it’s also a chance to grab a coffee, shop like a local or simply watch local life go by. The market is open from 7.30 – 11.30 am, but it’s best to get there early to avoid missing out on the goods – first in best dressed!
Margaret River’s Mediterranean climate makes it a prime spot for growing olives, and Eagle Bay Olives doesn’t disappoint. They grow both oil and table varieties including Frantoio, Leccino, Minerva, Pendolino Tuscan, green Manzanillo and Kalamata. Treat your tastebuds to sourdough drenched in olive oil, marinated table olives, tapenades and pesto. They also sell gourmet picnic platters and hampers filled with tasty olives, bread, crackers, cheese and chorizo which are great to take to the beach.
The Margaret River Chocolate Company produces chocolate that Willy Wonka himself would be proud of. The delicious smell of cocoa hits your nostrils as soon as you walk in, and there’s an amazing range of chocolates to try and buy. Think chocolate-coated redgum honeycomb, walnut and ginger bars, cranberry and pistachio nougat, chilli chocolate and ruby chocolate. If you’re looking for something savoury afterwards, pop into the Chocolate Cafe next door for a tasty sandwich, burger or salad.
The only thing that can make fine wine even more delicious is a plate of cheese. Margaret River Dairy Company is a prime spot for cheese lovers with a range of crumbly, smokey, creamy and hard cheese on offer. They also sell relishes, jams, crackers, chutneys and other condiments to create your own grazing board. All products are made traditionally with milk from cows that roam in the surrounding pastures.
10. Noongar bush food and medicine tour
The Wadandi Noongar people are the traditional owners of Margaret River. They have occupied these ancient lands for over 50,000 years and their culture is as rich and diverse as the landscapes. Learn about Noongar culture on a guided bush food and medicine tour You’ll forage for seasonal bush foods and learn how these plants are used in traditional recipes and for healing. You’ll use all five senses for this experience and there’ll be plenty of opportunities to taste seasonal native foods such as saltbush and emu plum.
If you’d like to get a taste of Margaret River and everything it has to offer check out our Margaret River tours.