After the perfect place for a long lunch in the heart of the Fleurieu Peninsula? Somewhere that serves nothing but the freshest local produce in the most dreamiest of settings?
Then you need to put The Currant Shed in McLaren Flat on your to-visit-list.
The Currant Shed is nestled away between vineyards and a lime grove, and is much for than just a shed. From the outside it is rustic, with stone cottage feel and an alfresco area lined with red vines. The inside however is more modern- think handmade American oak furniture, splashes of copper ascents and bunches of proteas and succulents scattered around the tables. There’s plenty of room for groups big and small (including weddings), as well and indoor and outdoor seating which can be used all year round- making it the perfect place to cosy up in the cooler months.
We had the pleasure of indulging in The Currant Shed’s new Autumn Tasting Menu, which showcases a range of seasonal produce grown onsite and locally. The tasting menu is $90.00 per head or $140.00 including wines. They also offer other items on the menu which you could purchase individually but if you’re hungry then the tasting menu is the way to go! Sadly we declined the wine list (as we were off to work that afternoon), but were told that it was full of local McLaren Vale reds, whites and sparkling, as well as an impressive beer menu which also boasted brews from the Fleurieu Peninsula.
Josh Picken and the team introduced us to the menu, prepared by head chef Dioni Flanagan. All the staff were very friendly and had such a positive vibe, and were incredibly attentive during our whole lunch- they really made the experience.
The tasting menu started with little treats of confiet salmon and horseradish, as well as little treats of puffed rice, topped with a combo of bok choy and cabbage grown in the onsite herb garden. The puffed rice was nice and crunchy and light. Shortly after the snacks we were presented with a bowl of dip with sweet potato chips- but this wasn’t your average dip. It was a light and fluffy number, made of Paris Creek Brie foam with mustard seed powder- unlike anything I have ever eaten before. So airy and the perfect combination with the wafer thin chips.
Next was a layer of pumpernickel, beetroot, malt and goats curd. The beetroot and goats curd was a match made in heaven, and the plating was perfect. My other half opted for the seafood option- the Smoked Kingfish, apple, onion and mustard. This got devoured very quickly- a good indication of a fabulous meal. I ever gave this one a whirl, and as someone who doesn’t enjoy seafood I found this very palatable and not fishy at all. On the side we had house made sourdough bread served with re churned Fleurieu Butter with Shiraz salt- I was tempted to snaffle another 10 rolls but resisted.
We were then treated to sliced South Australian Kangaroo in native pepper with a blackberry reduction and hazelnut. The kangaroo was cooked to perfection and blackberries were sticky and sweet, just like the macadamias that were candied and caramelised. The meat seriously melted in your mouth, unlike any kangaroo I have had before.
After the kangaroo was a vegan and vegetarians dream dish- cubes of Pumpkin, tofu, tempura eggplant, tahini and lime. The tempera was light and crispy with tofu and tahini paste was smooth and in abundance. Easily one of our favourite dishes of the day.
Main course was a feast of Wild rabbit wrapped in prosciutto, crispy saltbush and shallots on a bed of wilted warrigal greens. I’ve never eaten rabbit before so I was a little apprehensive, but it was not gamey at all and very flavoursome. The prosciutto was crispy and the crispy saltbush was a nice little addition.
Dessert was a winner for me- a lime tart with coconut sorbet, with lemon and lime zest with burnt meringue and crumble. The tart was zesty and had a true lime taste. The coconut sorbet was refreshing and cut through the zest, with the meringue being the perfect sweet addition to tie it all in together. This was enjoyed with a strong latte, made served with shortbread dipped in chocolate (eaten to quickly to photograph).
The Currant Shed is all about the finer details- the presentation of the food is top notch, their produce is fresh and locally sourced, and even the crockery had heart. The mugs were handcrafted by a 74 year old potter who is based in Southern Adelaide and cups and water carafes are made from recycled wine bottles from an artisan in Melbourne, all keeping in the theme of the McLaren Vale Wine Region.
It’s one of the most memorable dining experiences I have had in the Vale and I honestly cannot fault anything- except for the fact that I should have worn elasticated pants instead of tight high-waisted jeans.
Long lunch, wedding, any excuse to have a fabulous feed- they will have you covered.
You can find The Currant Shed at 104 Ingoldby Rd. McLaren Flat, South Australia.
For bookings contact them on (08) 8383 0232 or book online
*** Dressed in Copper was a guest of a The Currant Shed on this occasion- however all opinions and reviews remain honest and my own***