Former Quarter Twenty One and Bécasse chef Michael Robinson has joined the team at Margan in the Hunter Valley - just one of the year's key developments in wine-country eating. The arrival of chef George Francisco at Roberts has seen big changes, too, with the establishment of an organic kitchen garden, prompting a more seasonal focus to the menu. Fellow Hunter champions Bistro Molines and Muse continue to shine, while in the Southern Highlands, Bowral's Onesta Cucina (5 Boolwey St, Bowral, 02 4861 6620) does home-style Italian dining to a tee. Biota Dining takes a more modern approach, while the European-leaning fare at Berrima's Eschalot remains a favourite, especially in winter. Hot offers in Orange include Racine at La Colline, Bistro Ceello and Lolli Redini, while nearby in Mudgee, Market Street Café offers a package worth travelling for.