Food and drink, Adelaide
As I first mentioned on my Australia COUNTRY page, we Americans have been taught, via television advertising, to believe that all Australians LOVE Foster's Beer. Before I visited Oz, I thought Fosters to be the ubiquitous national brand of suds.
Boy, was I ever wrong. Most Aussies tell me that the only persons who drink Fosters in Australia are tourists. : ) Sooooooo, I didn't make THAT mistake.
But seriously, I always try to seek out and try the locally-favored brews. In Adelaide, it appears that Cooper's Pale Ale is loved far and wide. And, I'd say there's good reason to make Cooper's your call at the local watering hole. A nice crisp brew that goes down especially nice with something really salty, Cooper's really hits the spot after a long day of tourist stuff. Fosters? Naaaaaaah, mate. You want something else. : )
Fondest memory: The smile on the bartenders' faces when you'd tell them how fine the local brew is. : )
When you're visiting the Botanic Gardens, it's only a hop, skip and jump over to the National Wine Centre of Australia. The Centre is officially located at Hackney Street, which is at the eastern end of North Terrace. If you're not already in the vicinity visiting the Botanic Gardens, South Australia Museum or the Art Gallery of South Australia, you can easily access the Wine Centre by boarding the "Adelaide Free Bus", which stops at the Botanic Gardens.
The building itself is an interesting example of modern Australian architecture, with lots of glass and polished light woods in evidence. There's also a restaurant and bar on the premises.
The Centre itself can give you information on Australia's 53 different wine regions. There are exhibits and displays that will even allow you to select and blend your own "virtual wine".
And needless to say, there is a tasting gallery, where you can purchase and/or sample quite a few local wines. The Centre itself has a vineyard and produces some of its own vintages.
A$11 for adults, A$6 for children under 18. (Kids have to be accompanied by an adult) BTW, you do NOT have to pay this admission fee to visit the tasting gallery and wine shop areas. The Centre is open Monday-Fridays, 9 am - 5:30 pm. It's closed on Good Friday and Christmas.
telephone 08 8222 9288
Fondest memory: We enjoyed our little red wine tasting session. In all honesty, we didn't really find any of the group offered to be extraordinary*, but we DID learn a bit more about the fine art of tasting and evaluating vintages.
*And, we do not mean to, by any means, insult the wine-growing and production notoriety of South Australia. We have, on many occasions, had WONDERFUL wines from the area. It's just that during the "tasting" at the center, the vintages served were "average". The cost of participating in a tasting wasn't very high, so I'm sure that we didn't come across any 94 and above Wine Spectator-rated wines. ; )
Established in 1915, Haigh's is Australia's oldest chocolate manufacturer. If you'd like to enjoy special chocolate tastings, free coffee and tea and the opportunity to load up on some excellent candies, swing by Haigh's. There are numerous opportunities throughout Adelaide to learn more about the Haigh Chocolate company and philosophy.
There are stores downtown, both in the Central Market and at Rundle Mall. Or, you can take Bus number(s) 191, 192, 195 or 196 to bus stop number 1, to the Haigh's Visitor Center, which is less than ten minutes from the Central Business District. At the visitor center, there are factory tours and all sorts of FREE chocolate munching opportunities.
And even at the downtown stores, they LOVE to give away free samples. Just keep smiling and tell them how much you LOVE chocolate and they'll keep it coming. It's clear that the ladies in the store love their jobs. Jeez, who wouldn't love working in a place like Haigh's chocolates?
Haigh's is proud to be one of the only specialist chocolate retailers in the world whose chocolate making BEGINS with the raw cocoa bean. Haigh's insists on control of their product from start to finish.
It's great chocolate without any hint of Willy Wonka weirdness. :)
Fondest memory: Well, it is a chocolate store, so I have many fond memories of their delicious candies. The milk chocolate "frogs" were so rich and creamy. Truly an outstanding job of chocolate-making. FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT SPECIFIC GIFT ITEMS, PLEASE SEE THE HAIGH'S TIP IN THE "SHOPPING" SECTION OF MY ADELAIDE PAGE.
And..... they make an EXCELLENT hot chocolate drink mix. (see package in photo below) There's nothing better than hot chocolate on a cold night... and Haigh's hot chocolate is among the best I've ever enjoyed.
OK, contact information:
Enquiries: (08) 8372 7070
Tour Bookings (08) 8372 7077 / (08) 8373 0528 (FAX)
The mailing address for the Visitor Center is 154 Greenhill Road, Parkside,
Adelaide, South Australia 5063
The DOWNTOWN Haigh's stores contact info:
2 Rundle Mall
Adelaide, SA 5000
08 8231 2844/8231 8898 (fax)
Shop 1, Adelaide Arcade
116 Grenfell Street
Adelaide, SA 5000
08 8223 1321/8223 4264 (fax)
Shop 17, Central Market (THIS IS THE ONE WE VISITED)
Arcade, Victoria Square
Adelaide, SA 5000
08 8212 2511/8212 7051 (fax)
NOTE: PLEASE TAKE A LOOK AT THE HIDDEN PHOTOS. I'VE MADE USE OF THE NEW VT "MULTIPLE PHOTOS PER TIP" OPTION. : )
I love visiting (what we call) a "farmer's market". The chance to buy fresh fruits and vegetables at an excellent price is just something that brings out the "chef" in me. Imagine how much fun I had visiting Adelaide's Central Market. This giant-sized farmer's market, located in downtown Adelaide (behind the Hilton Hotel, between Gouger and Grote Streets) is the LARGEST PRODUCE MARKET IN THE SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE. Now, that's some serious cabbage, folks.
What a great place... all of the veggies were so fresh and appealing. There were excellent and varied meat markets as well, not to mention all sorts of fresh local seafood.
I've already said in my opening page that if I ever moved to Australia, I think I'd want to live in Adelaide. Well, when I move to Adelaide, I'm going to shop at the Central Market every day that it's open.
When IS it open? Well, in order to rotate stock and accept deliveries, the market is basically open to the public only on Tuesdays (7 am - 5:30 pm), Thursdays (9 am - 5:30 pm), Fridays (7 am - 9 pm) and Saturdays (7 am - 3 pm). Trust me... if you're the sort that really enjoys shopping for fresh foods, you'll love this place. It's heaven on earth for vegetarians and people who love them. : )
And, check this out...... (I read this in a tour book) You can actually get a "behind the scenes" visit to the Market by calling "Market Adventures" at 08 8336 8333. The tour costs A$35 for adults and A$18 for children 3-11. I can't imagine wanting to spend THAT much money for a "behind the scenes" visit to a market. I'll just go during regular hours and spend my extra cabbage on some....er......cabbage. :)
Fondest memory: Like I say, I loved the market. I've NEVER seen any more beautiful and BIG carrots. I was reminded of that Crocodile Dundee line, "that's not a knife, THAT's a knife". Well, insert the word "carrot" for knife and you get the feeling. See the photo of the killer carrots below.
And my goodness gracious.... I bought some of the best meaty bacon I've ever tasted at the market. (photo below) It sure made our Adelaide breakfasts over at Florence's Cottage extra-scrumptious.
Favorite thing: Tasting Australia is a unique festival, an opportunity for food and drink professionals, the world’s food, drink and travel media, and the public to enjoy the best that South Australia and the nation at large has to offer in produce, food products, wines and beers, hospitality and tourism. Held every two years in Adelaide, Tasting Australia also provides a showcase for the world’s top culinary talents. The countdown has begun to the next event, taking place from October 21 to 30, 2005.
Have a Chicken Yiros from the Rundle Street Falaffel House. trust me, the best Yiros, Kebab, etc that you will ever have!
Fondest memory: This place is so quiet. If you don't like being in large crowds, then this is the place for you. The only time the city gets really busy is during December when the Christmas rush starts. otherwise you wonder where everyone is.
Heh, This is where Naomi , kent and Myself got our Freebies (cherry coke and low fat chips) given out by a local Radio station.
Cherry Coke Sux though.