“The appointment of a new chef with a stellar CV makes a visit to a cellar door with a difference even more attractive”


On Saturday, 1 July 2023, in the Adelaide Advertiser, Simon Wilkinson shared a few generous words in his review of Essen by Artisans of Barossa.

On our new Head Chef, Robin Wanger's menu, he wrote: 

“Beginning with a few snacks helps add. Miso-marinated sardines fried in a translucent tempura veil are dotted with blobs of charred leek puree. Crunch ... munch ... gone but not forgotten. Crisp pastry butterflies (or palmiers) have been brushed in melted marrow that just might have come from the hollow of the bone in which they are propped like playing cards. The fermented apricot slurry beneath provides a mellow fruit relish.”

“Raw nannygai (red snapper) is cured in salt and chamomile, before finishing with finger lime and pickled muntries (native berries) that also provide the dressing. The combination has the leaf-and-petal aromatics of stomping through a garden bed.”

“Mains are beyond reproach. The pure white, buttery flesh of a perfectly cooked fillet of murray cod shines beside roasted peppers, caper leaves and an olive salsa.

Even better are slices of locally-raised and slow roasted Gumshire pork loin. The strip of fat across the top has contracted into something you won’t even consider cutting off. The accompaniments - a bacon broth and a salsa of peppers fresh and dried - are wonderful even after the pork is gone.

To finish, the firm variety of persimmon is infused with fermented honey and then grilled Its blackened surface is then topped with a disc of rosemary ice-cream ... that honey-based sauce is amazing.”

Simon’s kind words also expressed his understanding of what Artisans of Barossa is trying to acheive:

“I have a few other good reasons to give thanks for this wine-lover’s wonderland that brings together eight regional producers of differing persuasions.

In recent times, I've tangled with a Tripelpunkt (riesling) from Chaffey Bros on a sun-kissed afternoon; been introduced to varieties that usually fly beneath the radar (hello Clairette), and splurged on a 12-year-old red blend from the brilliant John Duval. All possible because Artisans has more than 50 bottles open to pour at any time and a savvy waiting team who know them intimately.

It’s not the wine that has prompted this latest visit, however, but the arrival earlier this year of an impressively credentialed head chef, who is overseeing the venue’s Essen restaurant and more impromptu snacking selection [our Delikatessen].”


Food: 15.5/20

Ambience: 16/20

Service: 17/20

Reservations essential. Follow the link for "Essen by Artisans of Barossa" https://artisansofbarossa.com/pages/restaurant-bookings 🔗

Read the full review. Follow the link here