Tuesday 8 April 2008

Surfing the Menu in Margaret River

Margaret River in Western Australia’s south west has long been a mecca for the surfing community and from April 7 until April 13, will host the World Qualifying Series Six Star surf event, the Drug Aware Pro.

In addition to watching the world class surfing action provided by the likes of Sunny Garcia, Jake Paterson and Bethany Hamilton, guests to the region will also be able to surf the menu at some of Australia’s most respected restaurants and wineries.

Cape Lodge Lakeside Restaurant was recently voted number four in the World for food by Conde Naste Traveller, and it’s easy to see why with Executive Chef Tony Howell changing the menu daily and using only the best produce the region has to offer.

“I love sourcing the freshest, finest, local produce imaginable and creating a memorable dining experience for patrons,” Mr Howell said.

“I love the fact that I have the flexibility to create something new every night depending on what produce I source – it keeps the menu fresh and exciting.”

Mr Howell is an avid surfer himself, so he is excited at the possibility of cooking for some of the world’s best surfers.

“One of the biggest reasons I live in Margaret River is the amazing surf – so I really enjoy the Drug Aware Pro.

“In the past some of the surfers have enjoyed dinner at our restaurant, so hopefully this year I’ll be able to exchange cooking secrets for surfing tips with some of my idols,” Mr Howell said.

The thirsty traveller is spoilt for choice as well, with more than 220 local grape growers or wine producers in the region and 100 with cellar doors open to the public.

Margaret River is home to some of Australia’s finest vineyards (many of which have fantastic dining facilities), including Vasse Felix, Leeuwin Estate, Pierro, Cullen, Amberley, Madfish, Moss Wood and Voyager Estate. While the region produces only 3% of Australia's wine, it accounts for 20% of its premium wine.

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