I just love it when you have heard glowing reports of the food at a restaurant and when you finally get there and find out all of the rave reviews were certainly spot on.
It was a hot, humid, sticky Sunday when we headed out to Jarrahdale to visit Millbrook Winery and have lunch. The setting is just stunning with natural bushland all around the property . It creates the most amazing setting and when you make your way from the wine tasting downstairs up to the restaurant the landscape comes into focus.
This is the perfect setting for a long lazy Sunday lunch.
First though so history of Millbrook…
A boutique winery and restaurant in the historic town of Jarrahdale , 50 minutes south-east of Perth. The winery is located at the Chestnut Farm, a property that backs on to the Serpentine River and is nestled among jarrah forests, with stunning vistas of the rolling landscape.
The origins of Chestnut Farm date back to the 19th century, when the original owner, Joseph Batt, planted an orchard and the first grapevines in 1865, providing fruit to the local timber-millers in Jarrahdale.
In 1996, Chestnut Farm and Millbrook Winery were bought by Peter and Lee Fogarty. The Fogartys, together with their children John, Mark and Anna, planted new vines, making the vineyard a true labour of love.
In 2001, construction of the state-of-the-art winery was completed. It is now a stunning home to a modern winemaking facility, barrel halls, a tasting room and a restaurant.
One of the things that stands out is the fact that they do not buy fruit and vegetables but source them on the property from the 90 year old orchard and the heirloom vegetable garden which is grown from last years saved seeds, as well as stone fruits, citrus, figs, apples, free range eggs, olives and honey that all come from the estate. Nearly all of the products used are sourced locally and as sustainably as possible. These are the factors that influence how the menu evolves and created an amazing lunch for us!
You have 2 choices for lunch; either order a la carte who do the $75 three course choice which enables you to select 3 courses with the addition of olives and bread and a special course between main course and dessert to cleanse the palate.
Of course being people who love food we all chose the $75 three course option. We all started with the Kitchen’s Choice to begin with that consisted of 3 delightful dishes. The figs were served with popped corn and fresh corn and created the most divine tastes that were simply gorgeous. Sitting along side this was cucumber served with lamb shoulder that melted in the mouth and tasted amazing. Finally there was the kingfish served with homegrown plums that had been prepared with salt, pepper and some sugar to create a complexity that just added another dimension to the kingfish.
This was the perfect start to our meal.
We then moved on to the main course and 3 of us chose to have the Viognier braised rabbit risotto with bacon and fennel. This was a light, flavorful main course and the crisp bacon served on top of the risotto added another element to the flavors.
Trevor chose the stewed poverello beans that were served with 2 cuts of pork (they use the whole pig and as this dish is sold the cuts served vary) and this was served with sage oil. The pork was succulent and full of flavor and the beans were the perfect vegetable to go with this.
Served with the main course was Chef Guy Jeffreys take on potato salad – lightly roasted potatoes served warm and served with an homemade mayonnaise under the potatoes.
We were then served fresh mulberries as a palate cleanser which was just beautiful.
Then it was time to think about dessert and for this course we all chose to try something different.
I chose the plums, mascarpone parfait, shortbread. The plums were sweet (one of them had been grilled to add yet another dimension to the dish) and complimented the mascarpone parfait with a light crisp shortbread. It was sensational!
Rodney had the chocolate mousse cake served with macadamia nuts and ginger ice cream. This was a real delight and Rodney loved every mouthful.
Robbie had the trio of ice creams served hidden under a light crisp biscuit and each one complimented the other to create a stunning warm Sunday delight to finish the meal with.
Trevor completed his meal with the licorice all sorts that was served with ice cream. This was a deconstructed idea of an all sort but it all worked so wonderfully together to create another memorable dessert.
The restaurant has been lauded and won many awards in the last couple of years. Head Chef, Guy Jeffreys, was named Chef of the Year 2017 by the West Australian Good Food Guide for “plating up food that is memorable, creative and generous” with the restaurant rated 2nd across the whole state.
Millbrook was listed as one of Australia’s Top 500 Restaurants of 2017 by the Australian Financial Review and was named in the Top 10 Restaurants in Western Australia by both Qantas Travel Insider and Gourmet Traveller magazines. Millbrook also features in the Top Regional Restaurants in Western Australia in Gourmet Traveller’s 2018 Restaurant Guide and in Broadsheet’s Restaurants of Australia. I promise you if you make the journey out there you will not be disappointed. It really is one of those restaurants that will stick in you mind for a long time.
Do yourself a favor and head to Millbrook, you will not be disappointed, but book before hand as they were full up on Sunday!
The restaurant is open Thursday to Monday for lunch only from 12 noon.