Restaurant Guide

Maxwell: Restaurant review

There's a lot to love about the the culinary arm of the Maxwell Winery, located in the heart of the SA's McLaren Vale.

Maxwell's dining room

Address

Olivers Rd, McLaren Vale, SA

Hours

Lunch daily noon-3.30pm

Prices

4-6 courses $80-$95

Changes at Maxwell Winery in McLaren Vale have reshaped the cellar door and eating spaces, providing the right platform for Fabian Lehmann's rising talent. An enclosed patio offers casual plates to share, while a separate contemporary dining room – with limestone walls, a dramatic custom-made marble-topped central table and low-slung soft leather chairs – serves a choice of two dégustation menus. Tricks are at play throughout – a spherified oyster skin pops with a shot of gin and tonic, for example – but the common thread is richness and generous flavour, teased out by classic European cooking techniques. A buttery medley of mushrooms, grown in the winery's limestone cave, is crowned with crisp potato ribbons and tarragon. Rare aged duck breast with crisp skin sits on an earthy turnip purée, dressed with pea tendrils and cress. Service is brisk and informed, but the offer of mostly Maxwell wines (with a few internationals) leaves notable gaps in drinking choices. Although savoury-edged desserts are pleasing, the "traditional ploughman's lunch" – a hefty cheeseboard with seven Australian cheeses and condiments – provides an outstanding finish.
Phone:
(08) 8323 8200
Bookings:
Bookings recommended
Features:
  • Licensed
  • Vegetarian-friendly
  • Wheelchair access
  • Outdoor dining
Accepted card types:
  • American Express
  • Eftpos
  • MasterCard
  • Visa
Chef:
Fabian Lehmann
This review was made independently for the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. The guide's reviewers visit unannounced and pay their way.