Six Ways To Taste Life In Queensland

04 Feb 2016

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Whether you retreat to a sun-soaked island or hide away in the lush rainforest, Queensland is guaranteed to get your taste buds tingling. Award-winning restaurants offer mouth-watering menus that will satisfy rumbling appetites with regional flavours.

Sample the state’s best resort dining experiences from talented chefs who are immensely passionate about their craft.

Lizard Island Resort, Great Barrier Reef

Staying on Lizard Island is indeed a luxury with 24 silky white sand beaches at your fingertips. Just a one-hour scenic flight from Cairns, the Lizard Island Resort boasts a truly enviable location – directly on the Great Barrier Reef.

Be tempted daily by the delightful options available at the Salt Water Restaurant. Superb local produce is always a feature of the everchanging menu. Meanwhile, the Driftwood Bar and Wine Cellar is the perfect place for a tipple.

Make the most of the idyllic surrounds with a picnic hamper that can be devoured on the shores of a deserted beach. The resort also offers impressive beachside degustation dining.

There are two private pavilions located on Anchor Bay beach that provide a sensational setting to accompany your gourmet meal. Executive Chef, Mark Jensen creates a culinary wonder of six courses, each with accompanying wines. The menu embraces local, seasonal food with a focus on sumptuous seafood.

Driftwood Bar & Wine Cellar on Lizard Island. Image courtesy of Delaware North.

One&Only Hayman Island, Great Barrier Reef

In the heart of the Great Barrier Reef, the stylish One&Only Hayman Island features four amazing restaurants. Pacific is known for its never-ending Coral Sea views and terrific all-day dining. Begin the morning with fluffy pancakes, freshly baked pastries and eggs made-to-order.

Amici offers authentic Italian fare in a warm and welcoming environment. Step inside and relish the aroma of wood-fired pizza. For the flavoursome spices of Pan-Asian cuisine, there’s Bamboo, set in a secluded oriental bamboo garden overlooking a koi pond. If it’s a more relaxed vibe you seek, you can enjoy al fresco dining at Aquazure.

For food aficionados and aspiring chefs, The Chef’s Table is an absolute must. Venture backstage into the heart of the Main Kitchen and be treated to a magnificent degustation dinner artfully paired with unique wines.

This gourmet dining experience is both interactive and informative with Executive Chef, Karim Hessene sharing commentary and anecdotes throughout the evening.

Pacific restaurant at One&Only Hayman Island. Image courtesy of Kerzner International.

Silky Oaks Lodge, Daintree National Park

Situated on the Mossman Gorge River, the stunning Silky Oaks Lodge is surrounded by verdant tropical rainforest. Away from the city hustle, you will experience a breath of fresh air in a truly spectacular natural environment. Make yourself at home in your contemporary eco lodge nestled high in the tree tops or visit the Healing Waters Spa for a pampering.

Then it’s time to dine at the award-winning Treehouse Restaurant. Sample hand-crafted dishes and sip fine Australian wine as you appreciate the glorious outlook across the Daintree Rainforest. You could also opt for a cold drink at the popular Treehouse Bar.

Positioned above the Mossman River, the fabulous Jungle Perch is a favourite dining spot for smitten couples. Here you can enjoy an intimate breakfast, lunch or dinner with your loved one. In the evening, the water below is lit by floodlights creating a truly magical ambiance.

Treehouse Restaurant. Image courtesy of Silky Oaks Lodge.


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qualia, Great Barrier Reef

Showcasing all the splendour of the Great Barrier Reef, qualia can be found nestled away on the northernmost tip of Hamilton Island. Dining at the resort is a dream with exquisite cuisine prepared by Executive Chef Craig Knudsen. Inspired by the resort’s incredible vistas, the menu focuses on light and fresh flavours, using seasonal, local ingredients.

Savour a meal by candlelight at the Long Pavilion with endless sea views. For an informal bite, sample tasty eats from the modern Australian menu at Pebble Beach or be served chilled cocktails by the infinity-edge pool. The exclusive guest-only wine bars provide the perfect setting to cap off a perfect day, with single-malt scotch, port and dessert wines available.

For a little extra privacy, choose a platter from the in-pavilion dining menu that can be delivered right to your door. You’ll be forgiven for never wanting to leave your sunset-lit private deck.

Sunset behind the Long Pavilion at qualia. Image courtesy of Hamilton Island Enterprises.

Spicers Peak Lodge, Scenic Rim

Perched on a mountaintop in Queensland’s Scenic Rim, Spicers Peak Lodge offers a peaceful oasis for city dwellers, with elegant suites and private lodge accommodation.

The multi award-winning Peak Restaurant is lauded for its outstanding cuisine, prepared by Chef Doug Innes-Will. Inspired by the stunningly beautiful and remote location of the restaurant, the menu is designed to pay homage to the past and deliver a culinary taste sensation for hungry guests.

A la carte dining could see you savouring Hervey Bay scallops, duck ham, organic lamb or Mooloolaba kingfish. Dessert may feature mouth-watering treats like pistachio and cherry nougat parfait or cookies and lemon cheesecake.

For lunch you could sip wine while sampling a three cheese platter complete with house lavosh and fig and walnut salami. For an unforgettable experience, dine at dusk and enjoy the striking sunset with a five-course degustation dinner complete with matched wines.

Typical fare served in the Peak Restaurant. Image courtesy of Spicers Retreats.

Spicers Tamarind Retreat & Spa, Maleny

Spicers Tamarind Retreat & Spa blends western luxury with eastern tranquility in the gentle rainforest of Maleny.

One of the highlights of your stay will be dining at the multi award-winning restaurant, The Tamarind. Specialising in modern Asian cuisine, the attractive menu effortlessly combines sweet, sour and spicy flavours with fresh local produce. When it comes to drinks, be sure to try the famous lychee martini.

Take your feasting one step further by joining the professionals at the Tamarind Cooking School. Have the opportunity to master a wide range of skills as you learn from expert chefs in state-of-the-art facilities.

Learn how to create flavourful French fare or try your hand at homemade pasta in the Italian class. If Thai cuisine takes your fancy, you can learn how to incorporate rich, aromatic and spicy flavours in authentic and downright tasty dishes.

Join the professionals at the Tamarind Cooking School. Image courtesy of Spicers Retreats.

Jessica Holmes

A foodie at heart, I love to travel to the USA and explore their expansive culinary culture. You’ll typically find me satisfying my sweet tooth in an American candy store, sampling macarons in a quaint New York patisserie or stocking up on American baking supplies.