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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. 

Secret Tuscany

A far cry from Tuscany’s familiar gently rolling hills, Monte Argentario’s appealing mix of mountain, ocean, island and lagoon makes it one of Italy’s hidden treasures, writes Emiko Davies.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

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.

Moon Park to open Paper Bird in Potts Point

No, it’s not a pop-up. The team behind Sydney’s Moon Park is back with an all-day east-Asian eatery.

Brae

Prepare to enter a picture of the countryside framed by note-perfect Australiana but painted in bold, elegant and unsentimental strokes. Over 10 or more courses, Dan Hunter celebrates his region with dishes that are formally daring (Crunchy prawn heads! Creamy oyster soft-serve! Sea urchin and chicory bread pudding!), yet rich in flavour and substance. The menu could benefit from an edit, but the plates are tightly composed - and what could you cut? Certainly not the limpid broth bathing fronds of abalone and calamari, nor the clever arrangement of lobster played off against charred waxy fingerlings under a swatch of milk skin. The adventure is significantly the richer for the cool gloss of the dining room, some of the most engaging service in the nation and wine pairings that roam with an easy-going confidence. Maturing and relaxing without surrendering a drop of its ambition, Brae is more compelling than ever.

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.

Discovering Macedonia

Like its oft-disputed name, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia defies simple definition but its rich diversity extends from the dinner table to the welcoming locals, writes Richard Cooke.

Admiralgade 26, Copenhagen

Genzo Miyata, a member of the Admiralgade 26 team

Genzo Miyata, a member of the Admiralgade 26 team


Admiralgade 26 in Copenhagen is the hospitality equivalent of the difficult second album. Christian Nedergaard and Sebastian Rind Nellemann relied on gut instinct when they opened their wonderfully personal wine bar, Ved Stranden 10, on a canal opposite Christiansborg Palace seven years ago. But for this, their first restaurant, they went soul-searching.

"We sat down and thought on a more existential level about who we are and what we want to do," says Nedergaard, adding the "brutal" 18-month-long exercise had nothing to do with other restaurants. "It's one long conversation with the room and the period and ourselves."

The result is a magical double-height space celebrating aesthetics and craftsmanship. Taking the room's 1910 remodelling date (the building itself dates back to 1796) as a reference point, they mixed pieces from Kaare Klint, Jean Prouvé and Giò Ponti with futuristic light fittings and ikebana-style floral arrangements.

"All these details are like totems and reminders about craft, and hopefully they create a certain ambience," says Nedergaard.

Admiralgade 26.

They do. The restaurant, which opened in June in an old theatre down the street from the wine bar, is beyond convivial, orhyggelig, as they say in Denmark. Breakfast segues to lunch, lunch to dinner, and after the kitchen closes around 10pm, obliging cooks will rustle up a snack. The well-crafted menu is "eclectic in a good way", and includes a Japanese-inspired breakfast, a lighter yet no less flavoursome bouillabaisse, and what Nedergaard calls advanced staff meals such as hash with fried egg and pickled beetroot.

Unlike the wine bar where printed wine lists are banned in favour of dialogue, Admiralgade 26 has two. One has wines mostly produced in collaboration with winemakers such as Matassa from France's Roussillon region. The other is a cellar list of rare finds.

Admiralgade 26, Admiralgade 26, 1066, Copenhagen K, +45 3333 7973, admiralgade26.dk

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