Freelance writer, mum of two who loves living in sunny Perth.
Published July 23rd 2012
Take a drive out to Chittering Valley and you'll not be disappointed to chance upon this lovely restaurant and winery. In the Winter, spend a lovely evening warmed by the heat of an open log fire. In the Summer, take your meal and your wine alfresco and enjoy the balmy evening warmth. A restaurant for all seasons, with a wide menu to cater for your different visits.
My last visit to Stringybark was on a cold Winter's night where I was happily directed to my table adjacent to the roaring log fire. Perfect and cosy. Don't let this rural location fool you into thinking that you needn't book; this restaurant is a favoured haunt of the locals of an evening, and a go to restaurant for weekenders seeking a sumptuous Sunday lunch. So book before you visit, or leave hungry and disappointed.
From entrée to dessert, portion sizes are huge, and you'll need to come with an empty stomach or debate whether you'd rather have an entrée or a dessert as it's very unlikely you'll do justice to a three course meal. The entrée menu has a number of fish options, with the chilli mussels proving particularly popular. As a sharing option the turkish breads with dips makes a great selection. For my husband, his money is always on the chicken and bacon pate for its 'man sized' pate portion.
The main course menu provides a great selection of choices for even the most varied of tastes. There something for everyone with fish, chicken, duck, lamb, pork, beef and vegetarian options on the menu. On a Sunday the roast of the day ($24.50) is the meal of choice for most patrons, with a kid friendly small roast of the day ($10) also available. I'm a fan of their scotch fillet ($34.50), which is large, perfectly cooked and is accompanied by your sauce of choice of either peppercorn, garlic, beef jus or mushroom. You can also order this as surf and turf, topped with garlic prawns; yum.
If you've wisely saved some room for dessert, then in my opinion, you've truly saved the best till the last. Indulge yourself in a home made dessert with decadent choices including death by chocolate, sticky date pudding, bread and butter pudding and pavlova to name a few. I should point out at this point that you might want to stop counting the calories so you can really relax and enjoy these handcrafted delights. Go one step further, unbutton your waistband and ensure you don't get defeated by this final course.
I'm sad to say I was defeated by this bread and butter pudding
The Wine I should finally pay homage to the fact that this restaurant is in fact a winery. To compliment your meal the menu is punctuated by some great wine suggestions. You might want to nominate the driver for the night before you head out so there are no fights on driving (not drinking) duties once you taste how delicious the wine is. The wine list isn't extensive, and at first glance I was worried that my favoured dry white wine wasn't present. However, our friendly waitress assured me that the verdelho/chardonnay would be a great choice and despite my hatred of anything chardonnay related, she was spot on and it made for a lovely dry and fruity accompaniment. Whilst not a red wine fan, the shiraz has long been hit with my other half.
It's not just the great food and wine that I should compliment either, the staff are the perfect accompaniment to the taste sensations on offer with their attentiveness, friendliness and knowledge of the menu and winelist setting a great tone for excellent customer service. I'm so often disappointed by surly or lackadaisical staff, but here this is definitely not the case.
If ever you needed (another) reason to visit Chittering Valley, Stringybark Winery is certainly my choice for a rural eatery or Sunday lunch stopover.