Healthy Eating

We're championing fresh food that packs a flavour punch, from salads and vegetable-packed bowls to grains and light desserts.

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Grilled apricot salad with jamon and Manchego

Here we've scorched apricots on the grill and served them with torn jamon, shaved Manchego and peppery rocket leaves. Think of it as a twist on the good old melon-prosciutto routine. The mixture would also be great served on charred sourdough.

Chorizo recipes

Where would Spanish cuisine be without the chorizo? This versatile smallgood lends its big flavours to South American stews, soups, and salads, not to mention the ultimate hot dog. Let the sizzling begin.

2017 Australian Hotel Awards: The Finalists

This year's finalists across 11 different categories include established and new hotels, all with particular areas of excellence. Stay tuned to find out which hotels will take the top spots when they're announced at a ceremony at QT Melbourne on Wednesday 24 May, and published in our 2017 Australian Hotel Guide, on sale Thursday 25 May.

Farro recipes

Farro can be used in almost any dish, from a robust salad to accompany hearty beer-glazed beef short ribs to a new take on risotto with mushrooms, leek and parmesan. Here are 14 ways with this versatile grain.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

Hunter Valley NSW travel guide

Our guide to the best of the region.

Pea and ham soup

Aløft

There's nothing new about Nordic interiors - blond timbers, concrete surfaces, warm, mid-century charm without the twee - and thank heavens for that. It's a style that augments the beauty of everything around it, in this case, gorgeous Hobart harbour, which makes up one whole wall. What is new here, however, is the food - by veterans of Garagistes, which once dazzled diners down the road, Vue de Monde in Melbourne and Gordon Ramsay worldwide. There's a strong Asian bent, but with Tasmanian ingredients. In fact, the kitchen's love of the local verges on obsessive - coconut milk in an aromatic fish curry is replaced with Tasmanian-grown fig leaf simmered in cream to mimic the flavour. Other standouts include a gutsy red-braised lamb with gai lan and chewy cassia spaetzle, pigs' ears zingy with Sichuan pepper and a fresh, springy berry dessert. While the food is sourced locally, the generous wine list spans the planet. 

Il Locale, Mr & Mrs Howell, West Juliett, Fino

Il Locale, Brisbane

Il Locale, Brisbane

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country this week including Il Locale, Mr & Mrs Howell, West Juliett, and Fino.

BRISBANE
Il Locale
A version of vitello tonnato where the tuna arrives dotted through a couple of crunchy crumbed potato crocetti may not curry favour with traditionalists, but wow - it's a big-flavoured, nicely textured win for the diner. Ditto the wood-fired pizza, topped with softly picante provolone, a posy of rosemary and potato slices laid out on a properly puffy-edged and pliable base. Tucked behind antique wooden doors at the back of a bustling food precinct, Il Locale is the next step for hospitality stalwarts Mark and Narelle Tognini, and the confidence and know-how they bring to the operation are palpable. Interiors are classic and unfussy, and wines by the glass (carafe and bottle available too) are well priced. If these standards are maintained, this recent arrival looks certain to quickly assume the status of one of those locals that also attracts diners from across town. Il Locale, Rosalie Mews, 21 Nash St, Rosalie, Qld, (07) 3368 2122. FIONA DONNELLY

MELBOURNE
Mr & Mrs Howell
Named, of course, for the shipwrecked millionaires from Gilligan's Island, Mr & Mrs Howell doesn't venture into retro TV references beyond the moniker, instead borrowing its moves from the hip Brunswick playbook. The smart timber and brick fit-out includes a comfortable bar overhung with the prerequisite bare bulbs. It's the backdrop to a menu of solidly cooked comfort food of various culinary persuasions. Zucchini and chickpea fritters with creamy labne are everything you'd hope them to be, pleasantly golden with a decent crunch, while the paedestrian-sounding salmon kebabs with a citrusy guacamole are surprisingly successful, and tuna tartare served with tom yum-pickled cucumbers and crisp wontons waves the fusion flag. Service is a strong point, it's warm and accommodating - the perfect combo for a local diner in this neck of the woods. Mr & Mrs Howell, 173 Sydney Rd, Brunswick, Vic, (03) 9381 0846. MICHAEL HARDEN

SYDNEY
West Juliett
It's totally possible to have an entirely kale-based meal at West Juliett: the kale-rich house salad, amped up with avocado, seeds, nuts and the option of poached egg, tuna or chicken, perhaps, chased with a juice comprising kale, cucumber, parsley, coriander, apple and spinach. (No John or JJ Cale on the playlist so far, alas.) There's nothing dour about those options, but the menu offers plenty down the other end of the spectrum, too: a juicy burger fashioned from grass-fed beef, cheddar and a good, chunky beetroot relish, some handsome chips (hand cut, skin on), bacon and egg rolls with aïoli and chilli, not to mention salted caramel shakes made with Jersey milk. The peanut butter is ground fresh, the fizzy drinks have rhubarb and quince in them, the yoghurt is made in-house, the chocolate-chip bikkies come with a sprinkling of pink salt flakes, and the coffee is good, making this charming, very buzzy caff more than worthy of a detour. West Juliett, 30 Llewellyn St, Marrickville, NSW, (02) 9519 0101. PAT NOURSE

SOUTH AUSTRALIA
Fino
In 2002, Fino chef David Swain answered the call of the late, great Greg Trott, beloved former boss of Wirra Wirra Vineyards at McLaren Vale, to create a true signature dish for the Fleurieu Peninsula. He baked what he believed to be "the ultimate winter dish" using regional hero ingredients: a shiraz and lamb pie. Last month Swain revived the legendary Trott Pie, as it became known, and it's available until 31 August (get it while you can, it won't be back until July 2014) made with Normanville lamb neck, Coriole Vineyards kalamata olives and Wirra Wirra Woodhenge McLaren Vale Shiraz, and served with roast parsnips. Every pie is made to order so expect a wait of around 45 minutes - it'll be worth it. Fino, 8 Hill St, Willunga, SA, (08) 8556 4488. DAVID SLY

Got a hot tip for our Hot Plates team? Tweet us at @gourmettweets, or tag your Instagram photos with #GThotplates.


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