As someone who has high hopes for finding hidden local gems when travelling, I headed for the hills over the Easter long weekend in search for just that. There really is nothing quite like the rolling green hills and endless miles of beach that the south coast of Sydney has to offer; so whilst on my getaway from the fast-paced city life, I headed to the lost foodies guide: Urbanspoon. Welcome to Cupitt's Winery & Restaurant in Ulladulla.
Beautiful Autumn leaves at the entrance of Cupitt's Winery
When picking places to eat, I’ll take any opportunity to sample the best of a region, suburb or city. Whether it’s some schmancy restaurant, or the best hole-in-the-wall casual diner, I’m fairly open-minded. You can imagine just how excited I was when I saw the word winery joined with restaurant, as those with a keen pallet for oak woods, cherry notes and fruity flavours tend to have spot on pallets for matching great food with it.
This beautiful winery is secluded away from the crowd with a selfishly spectacular view. If the view doesn’t sell you immediately, once you step out of the car and approach the classic cellar door meets modern French décor of the restaurant, you will be immediately transcended into the world of funk beats, jazz and R&B music. I’m talking Stevie Wonder and Curtis Mayfield beats laying down some serious boogie tracks. Heck, even the cows are moo-ing in the background to this jam. They couldn’t have picked better music to set the atmosphere, and that’s what it’s all about.
Your lunch view
With your eyes and ears in tune, it’s time for your tastebuds and aromatic pleasure centres to start falling in love with Cupitt’s Winery. With a light lunch in mind, we shared a starter and pizza for just a simple, casual lunch. One thing I love about travelling is finding local and homemade produce. On the ploughman’s board we had jamón, a slab of local cheese, homemade pickles (which were divine - something hard for me to ever say about pickles), organic free range eggs and in-house baked sourdough. The jamón was not overly salted, and was incredibly pleasant which allowed the natural flavours to really shine through. The cheese was mild on the pallet, but still balanced with the richness of the jamón. As for those aforementioned pickles, they were incredibly appetising without overpowering the senses with its vinegary punch. The board was completed with a warm, fresh, crisp crust, with subtly soft slices of sourdough. I mean, c’mon. Can you get any more local than that?
The Ploughman's Board
How about a glass from the region. You're gazing and pondering life over while you eat? Sure, why not. The pinot noir was a light red with a spiced cherry note. Perfect to accompany our fresh fungi with ricotta and rocket pizza, which by the way, was so simple, yet so on point. From my experience in Italy (specifically Naples, home of the world’s best pizza), the part that makes or breaks the pizza is the dough, and these guys couldn’t have done the Italians prouder. Perfect thickness and flavour with simple yet delicious toppings.
Pizza and Pinot. Perfect Sunday lunch.
Cupitt’s Winery does in fact have a cellar door for wine tastings, and I recommend having a sample before dining. If you’re lucky enough to get a table in the main restaurant, or if you’re just after a casual bite; there is no better place to sample some great local food and wine than at Cupitt’s Winery. They’re a triple threat when it comes to food, atmosphere and view.
Cellar Door open to the public
Where: 58 Washburton Road Ulladulla NSW.
Why: For the weekend escape.
Cost: Starters up to $25, mains up to $50
Good for kids: Family friendly restaurant but maybe leave the kids at home.
Take away: No