It’s an updated Leeuwin Estate that awaits guests at the end of the property’s grand, tree-lined driveway. The private dining room and steel-and-glass pergola aren’t the only recent additions to this pioneering winery’s playbook.
Head chef Dan Gedge, a Rick Stein alumnus last seen at Watershed, is the new man on the pans and early signs suggest Leeuwin’s reputation for luxe-casual deliciousness is in safe hands. Seafood is a focus, with the menu veering from a tranche of cured Manjimup rainbow trout sharpened with finely shaved horseradish to grilled vadouvan-spiced marron. Gedge’s use of land proteins is equally assured, whether it’s a share platter of charcuterie celebrating Wagin duck or rare Margaret River Wagyu encrusted with a savoury black-bean ash and dabs of smoked oyster cream.
Food, of course, is only part of the appeal. Wine remains integral to the experience (arrive early for a pre-lunch tasting or matched wine-and-food flights), as does art. The downstairs gallery is the permanent home of the Leeuwin Art Series works.
Atmosphere: Relaxed opulence
Best for: A long lazy lunch
Cuisine: Contemporary Australian
Standout dish: Margaret River Wagyu with smoked croquette, mustard seeds and onion
Open: Open daily for lunch and Saturday evenings for dinner
Address: Leeuwin Estate, Stevens Road, Margaret River
Phone number: (08) 9759 0000