Margaret River is a living and breathing embodiment of ancient geography and Wadandi song lines -natural beauty, an abundance of space, fine wine and fresh coastal air make a holiday here the remedy to modern life.
For more than 60,000 years, this region has supported one of the world’s longest, unbroken human occupations, resulting in an immensely deep cultural knowledge and connection to the land – this is the traditional land of the Wadandi (Saltwater) People.
Continuing on our delicious drive around Australia of 2023 Readers’ Choice award-winning restaurants, we have five Margaret River locations that will satisfy any hunger growl:
Readers’ Choice 2023 – Regional:
Long one of the great dining rooms in Western Australia, The Cape Lodge Restaurant
on Caves Road in Yallingup provides an ingredient-driven menu utilising the finest produce. Situated on a 40-acre property with a pristine vineyard, manicured gardens, lake and bushland, this venue is an ideal destination for guests seeking a luxury base from which to explore one of the world’s finest wine regions.
Expect to sample plates like saddletail snapper, fish broth and sea succulents, lamb leg, saltbush and smoked eggplant, along with persimmon, white chocolate and macadamia cake.
Readers’ Choice 2023 – Asian:
Relax under the peppermint trees with a delicious cocktail in hand at Blue Manna Bistro
on Cyrillean Way in Dunsborough. This stylish restaurant is alive with the buzz of conversation as locals and visitors alike settle into polished wood surrounds at black table settings, under the watchful eye of the resident crab adorning the wall.
Perhaps linger over a leisurely lunch in the large alfresco area, while delving into Asian fusion fare like sake steamed clams, with ginger, garlic, chilli and sake butter, followed by Balinese betutu duck, Asian vegetables, hawkers’ rice and sambal matah.
Readers’ Choice 2023 – Café:
Find peace and tranquillity overlooking magnificent gardens along with fare with flair at Hippo Lakes Café
on Chapman Hill Road in Chapman Hill. Nestled near Busselton in the Margaret River wine region, Hippo Lakes is situated on 30 acres of land, boasting a family-owned café, farm shop and events venue; along with mature trees and benches for visitors to watch the birdlife as the sunlight dances on the waters of the lake.
Refuel and recharge by devouring a beef burger, cheddar, beetroot relish, tomato, lettuce, spicy chutney and chips, or chilled prawns, roasted vegetable, macadamia, lemon and herb quinoa salad.
Readers’ Choice 2023 – Seafood:
Taking fish and chips to the next level, Squid Lips
on Bussell Highway is the place to go in Margaret River for seafood. Nestled in Settlers Tavern Arcade, this casual eatery rocks a vibrant palette of red and purple with bench tables and high stools both inside and alfresco to perch on while contemplating a menu of all things squid.
Cast a net over marinated prawn and scallop skewers or Thai fish cakes to start, before chowing down on a chilli squid wrap with lettuce, tomato and aioli; or grab a family pack of beer-battered snapper and chips for a quick and easy weeknight meal.
Readers’ Choice 2023 – Middle Eastern:
A tantalising fusion of Middle Eastern cuisine comes together at The Nile Grill & Kebabs
restaurant, found inside the Eaton Fair Shopping Centre on Recreation Drive. Welcoming in ambience, a warm interior lures weary shoppers in need of nourishment, taking a seat among Egyptian-styled artwork and surrounded by soft red and orange hues.
Wrap your hands around a steak kebab, or chow down on an Egyptian lamb burger with grilled eggplant, roasted capsicum, garlic mint yoghurt and tahini; maybe share a mixed shish platter with prawn, lamb, chicken, kofta, salad, fragrant rice, hummus and toumaya.