Coast dwellers now have a new reason to cross the highway, as The Wine Barrel opens its doors for breakfast.
Besides our love of ‘the village’, The Wine Barrel holds a special place in our hearts. Nothing about it has been ordinary from the start, nor is it now.
Their new breakfast menu is a delight. With Chef Andrew Chapman joining owner/chef Warren Carnell in the kitchen, the menu is right on trend and service, as always, is friendly and on point.
We begin with a board of three exceptional house-made breads: a vegan seed and nut bread that could be life-changing, hemp seed bread – a trend in the making, and activated charcoal bread, served with maple butter, local honeycomb and Paul Grainger’s raspberry jam.
Next, we share two breakfasts to avoid food envy: a duo of Bao buns filled with smoky pork rib meat, a fried egg, avocado cream and smoked aioli ($17), and a very inventive Reuben Benedict served on two house-made crumpets with sauerkraut, silverside, fried green tomato and thousand island hollandaise.
Food inspiration spans world cultures (tortillas, cassoulet, salmon gravlax, eggplant kasundi, tempura) as well as health principles of gut health – fermentation, hemp, nuts and seeds, activated charcoal… but most of all it’s a really inventive ‘plant rich’ menu holding lots of choices for food lovers.
If you’re brunching, you can add a glass of prosecco (from 10am) to liven up your morning.
Travel across the great divide. You’ll be amazed at what the village holds for you.
(Breakfast Wed – Sun 7am – 11.30am Ph: 07 5569 0017)
Review 2015: It’s easy to fall in love with a place as unassuming as The Wine Barrel. Most of us embark on a dining experience with expectations of pleasure, but when the experience is close to perfect in food, service and atmosphere, we feel a rush of joy.
“Ah! That’s what we’re talking about!”
Situated in the village hub of Mudgeeraba, there’s a cosy rustic feel to The Wine Barrel that invites us to linger in its inner glow. Perhaps it’s the memory of woodcutters’ fires still kindled from the village’s past, or maybe just the passion of owners Warren and Michelle Carnall who have poured their heart and soul into this little nook… Whatever! Inside we’re enveloped in the warmth of a country cabin dining room, even though in reality its shell is an average-sized space on the end of an ordinary suburban row of shops.
We feel completely at home, tapping into memories of a favourite restaurant on the Atherton Tablelands where we spent many a Friday night with friends, eating great food, drinking good wine, and solving the problems of the world!
This is lunchtime on a winter weekend, with Gold Coast weather perfectly sun-drenched without being too hot. Sitting just inside the open doorway, we watch amazed as the restaurant slowly fills. Couples settle with a drink from the amazing board of specials as they place orders. Besides the restaurant’s name, the wine barrels on the veranda are a giveaway sign: this is a wine-lover’s paradise!
Expecting tapas sized plates, we’re cautious about under ordering, so grab a couple of sides as well. We needn’t have worried. The sizes are generous – somewhere between an entrée and main size; dishes which make use of locally-sourced ingredients, lovingly (and sometimes painstakingly) prepared, and beautifully presented:
- Wood-fired wholemeal bread from the century old Mudgeeraba Bakery, served with fresh dukkah, chilli oil and freshly made basil pesto – so simple a dish done exceptionally well due to its freshness and flavour. Oh my!
- Warmed mixed dressed olives, yummy and fragrant with herbs.
- Prawn and scallop wontons with snow pea shoots – subtle and melt in your mouth tender.
- Kipfler potatoes with roasted garlic and rosemary.
- Organic black mussels in a rosé sauce with chorizo, shallots and cream – exceptional! The touch of chilli provided a final hit to this dish – possibly the best mussels we’ve eaten!
- Tempura prawns with Nam Jim sauce – a crisp tempura shell encases really fresh prawns, the sauce giving a whack of ginger and lime flavour.
- Batons of free-range pork belly served with chilli caramel, coriander and mint. Two plates of this dish disappear without a trace, each drop of the glaze mopped up.
- Traditional crème brulée with pistachio biscotti and crystallised ginger. Sensational!
Local, organic, free-range… the dishes show off exceptional intensely flavoured ingredients with the indulgent touch of an owner/chef. This attention to detail is echoed on the restaurant floor, where service is swift, unobtrusive and knowledgeable.
When all the aspects of a restaurant come together, as they did on our visit to The Wine Barrel, we’re reminded why we dine out. It’s a story we love to tell; a story of care, passion and success.
8/59 Railway Street, Mudgeeraba; Open: Tuesday 11.30am – late Wed – Sun 7am – late Ph: 07 5569 0017 Fully licensed. No BYO.
NOTE: This is an updated review of a former article also been published on More Gold Coast.