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Vintners Bar & Grill @ Angaston Road, Angaston

Hey everyone!
Wishing everyone an amazing year of 2018 filled with great wines and food! 

On the last trip of wineries before we head home, we were treated to an immense time with an indepth introduction to the great wine portfolios of the fellow Yalumba winery and it's other wineries produced by the Hill-Smith family .. 
We walked around the Yalumba and the wine making history of Yalumba Signature wines of every vintage! 

They have an array of facilities such as the nursery and the cooperative that helps in the process of cultivating healthy vines and growing grapes that makes amazing wines and also the art and evolves into something very complex and delicious! 

We were also treated  to a visit to their vast wineries ranging from the hilly & cool Eden Valley to the warm and flat plains of the Barossa Valley! All of them ranging from the vineyards filled with Grenache vines that are even older than our parents and a huge vineyards filled with Shiraz vines that promises great hopes to the 2018 vintage! It was an exciting and educational day of a great understanding and appreciation of their efforts put into their wines and also the stories that goes behind the wines in terms of their names, the vineyard plots and also the winemaking that goes into it!

So we went to the famous and award winning restaurant in the Eden Valley which is relatively close to the Yalumba winery. This restaurant is known as the Vitners Bar & Grill or VBG .. It is one of the longest operating restaurant in the Barossa that is nestled among the vineyards! 

They offer both alfresco and formal dining options that are a great venue for functions and party .. 
Their main focus in giving a modern twist to the South Australian production is the source of the Barossa Farmers Market! Great Barossa & Eden Valley wine producers!

Their menu is really simple and accurate with a simple simplicity and direct menu design; it's something that you can see on the menu sounds spectacular & mouth watering! 
Tin of Ortiz Anchovies 
This is one of the first of many appetizers that we ordered! This is an interesting appetizer which they classify as Little Bit in their menu .. 
The first to start this food and wine filled dinner celebrating all things Barossa is the Tin of Ortiz Anchovies accompanied by a few slices of grilled local ciabatta.. This is actually quite new to me as honestly speaking I'm not a huge fan of anchovies as I had an unpleasant experience with it.. 
So when the Yalumba host ordered it, I was really skeptical on how this petite dish can be a great starter to our Barossa discovery dinner.. 

It doesn't take very long to try it for ourselves and to finally conquer my fear with the anchovies.. As the moment this appetizer came to our table, it has a minimal presentation that just focus heavily on the anchovies in the tin with that grilled ciabatta.. The anchovies are all thinly sliced and it was marinated with olive oil that just retains the anchovies taste of the sea and the salty taste as well.. To eat it, we have to first fish out the anchovies and then placed the anchovies on top of that warm and crispy ciabatta toast.. 

To my surprise, this combination of the briney anchovies and the warm and toasty ciabatta is really delicious and complement each other very well! As the anchovies has this salty freshness of the sea that is really nice and not overpowering and the meat itself has this oily and meaty texture and mouthfeel of it that goes well with the grilled and slight garlic taste from the toast! 
This anchovies and toast are eaten with a glass of Yalumba The Virgilius Viognier that is made of 100% Viognier that is harvested from the cool and hilly Eden Valley vineyards.. The taste of that meaty and very umami like viognier which was made with the help of the natural wild yeast from the surrounding ambient air of Eden Valley found in the skins and also in the wine making rooms.. This rather meaty and bold taste of a white wine compliments the salty anchovies very well with its nutty aroma of the oak barrel and creamy notes from the yeast contact.. 

The 2nd appetizer that we ordered from their Raw section of the menu is the Hiramasa Kingfish.. This dish is prepared raw as the section suggested and it was such an exquisite presentation of the kingfish.. I realized that the Kingfish is really a popular protein in the Barossa region as it was seen in almost every restaurant and it was also reasonably price.. The Kingfish was prepared quite elegantly with a drizzled of olive oil and the finely chopped black olives and black sesame that brought out a briney and salty element to the meaty kingfish.. This fish has a similar to the Salmon and it was really delicious and has this slight oily texture to it and it was really refreshing to eat! 

The Kingfish in terms of taste has a rather refreshing and meaty texture but it was such a lovely and light balance between the meaty texture of the kingfish with the salty and briny taste from the dehydrated black olives and the greeness from the olive oil itself

Hiramasa Kingfish
The Kingfish was paired with the Yalumba The Tri-Centenary Barossa Grenache which the vines are harvested in the Barossa Valley region.The vines here are all at the ages of 125 years and with this old vines, they will produce on a smaller scale in terms of quantity but high in term quality.. As the Grenache vines grew older they have an established root system and also they have an ingenious way of managing their resources in providing the essentials for grape growing! With this management and the old age, you can rest assure that they will have an immense complexity of flavours, bold yet elegant structure and the variety of endless fruit and secondary flavours which developed from this old vines to their grape berries.. 
The wine in terms of color; it has an intense black purple color that has a slight rim of ruby on the exterior of it due to the maturation process of French oak barrels for a short period of time to give it an elegant touch to the wine mouthfeel and to lend a helping hand in terms flavour development.. Taste wise, this barossa grenache opens up to an endless spectrum of fruity notes such as dried figs, black currants, plums and bitter dark chocolate at the end..After some time in contact with the oxygen, the wine has open up even more with that fragrance and taste of the earl grey tea alongside that floral note of lavender that is really relaxing.. The tannins however are on the silky and slight bitter side as the skins are on the thicker side..

Overall, This wine is a fantastic drink to go with a light fish dish that has the umami elements on the plate! 
SA Oysters
The 3rd starter which is also a under the Raw section is the SA Oysters which is delivered fresh daily.. So don't worry about the quality of the oysters as the chef has reassured that it is in good condition and delivered right to the door step daily!
Basically you can order the oysters in either a plate of 6 or 12 oysters..
 For us, we went for the plate of 6 oysters and the decision of trying it out was not a wrong starter to begin the dinner with on a beautiful and sea breezy note!
It doesn't take very long to wait for it to arrive as it comes swiftly after the we've licked the plate clean of the Kingfish! In terms of appearance, the oyster was shucked in the kitchen and it was accompanied by a generous slice of lemon and lime wedges that is there to complement the fresh and briney oyster.. Tastewise, the oyster is really easy to eat as it was really refreshing with a creamy and briney mouthfeel and the oyster glides smoothly and leave a zest of lemon and creamy after taste.. 
Carpaccio of Black Angus
The 4th and final starter that we tried is the Carpaccio of Black Angus..
This is a classic dish in the Barossa Valley region but it is also one of the dishes that caught my attention in the menu! As Australia has the best Angus & Wagyu beef that can rival with the American and Japanese beefs.. So it was really an exciting experience to be able to try out this dish that features their Black Angus beef!
After the arrival of the luscious and creamy oysters, the carpaccio came looking devastatingly magnificent with a white plate as the background and the thinly sliced black angus that was drizzled of olive oil with a thinly shaved slight salty parmesan cheese and finally dressed with some greens!

We paired this starter with the Yalumba The Signature 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon & Shiraz from Barossa Valley.. It is actually a surprising blend of wine between 2 bold and strong character that is mainly a stand alone but for the Yalumba winery and wine makers; they have decided to marry this 2 bold characters to create an exhilarating yet elegant wine to be drunk with or without food!
You would be very surprise with the how the 2 grapes are able to live together harmoniously in a bottle! The wine itself has an amazing yet tentalizing aroma of blackberries, plums, cherries and figs and alongside it there were dark bitter chocolates, eucalyptus and if you were to allow it to breathe or even decanted, the wine would slowly evolve and it reveals a cigar box and leather that is really worth every sip! And the acidity itself with its smooth and silky tannins from the oak aging pairs nicely with the Carpaccio..
If you aren't a huge fan of bold reds you can always opt for their Yalumba Tri- Centenary Grenache which are made from old vines of Grenache that on average age is 125 years old and this old folks produces one of the best wines that features the lovely yet complex flavours of the fruity and vibrant grenache with a side of body and complexity in its body and evolution of the secondary flavours! 
VBG Fries
It is one of the most addictive yet it captivates the hearts of their fellow eaters with it's every string! This captivating and addictive treats is a VBG frieze
Be very aware with the mighty power of this ordinary looking bowl of fries as the moment you have the 1st string of fries you won't never stop holding that bowl! It is very crispy and crunchy yet not oily.. It is the most addictive side we have experience before! 

Crumbed Pig Fingers
The 1st main which arrives from the smaller section in the menu is the Crumbed Pig Fingers.. This is actually a dish that is quite intriguing and daring to be placed on the menu as we wonder how it taste like.. We didn't want to leave the night with regrets and so we did the most daring thing and order it in order to satisfy the foodie self and to finally know this intriguing dish! 

This pig finger when it arrives, it has a rather simple yet homey presentation but it just brings out more excitement to everyone on the table! The plate was decorated with a tartar cream alongside the slices of gherkins and you guess it the star of the plate is the most awaited crumbed pig fingers.. 
The pig fingers are breaded and fried fingers that contains the pork and also it tasted like a spam that is much well seasoned and also it is really juicy despite it was fried.. The combination of different textures of fried minced meat that goes well with the creamy and sourish tartar sauce and it paired very well with the sliced gherkins! 
Blue Swimmer Crab Macaroni
The 2nd main that arrive is the Blue Swimmer Crab Macaroni which is a rare treat to see it on the menu.. We were rather tempted and inquisitive to try it out! As for me, I was rather skeptical as how the macaroni will be made whether with a generous serving of cheeses that is similar to the mac& chesse of the American or the subtle and elegant style of the Italian macaroni.. 
It doesn't take very long to find out as it was swiftly brought to us from the lovely servers that is fast with their hands and feet in their craft of providing excellent and friendly service!

The portion of this macaroni is just the right portion to share or even having it alone..
The presentation of this macaroni is really colorful and attractive enough for even myself as I'm not a huge fan of the mac& cheese to give it a go!
 The blue swimmer crab flesh are already incorporated into the mac& cheese and it was finally dusted with a generous topping of the salty and bubbly fish roe to give it another oomph of flavour dimension.. In terms of taste, the swimmer crab flesh was sweet and you can taste the freshness of this crab and it goes amazingly well with the mac& cheese that has a slight salty and creamy texture from the cheese but it wasn't overpowering that it covers the taste of the crab meat completely.. The fish roe also brought a touch of fun and umami flavour to the mac& chees without being a bored dish when it comes to texture!

This macaroni can pair amazingly with the Yalumba Virgilius Viognier which is harvest entirely from the Eden Valley vineyards.. The Eden Valley vineyards has a rather cooler temperature in comparison to the vineyards located on the Barossa plains and the soil of the Eden Valley has more minerals.. This Virgilius Viognier is made with wild yeast that is from their surrounding atmosphere.. This wild yeast has helped with giving a depth of character to this wine and also layers of texture and complexity.. In terms of taste, it has this medium bodied to it alongside the aromas of peaches, slight spices of ginger, a hint of flinty notes on the palate and luscious mouthfeel that goes great with meats! 

Rack of Lamb
The last main from their Bigger section of the menu to arrive to our table is the Rack of Lamb that is cooked medium rare being served on top of the beans and the jus surrounding it! The lamb was cooked to perfection according to the ideal doneness by the chef! And also the lamb is actually from the Hutton Vale region that produces fantastic lamb that is juicy and tender!
The lamb that we had for dinner is pure without much help of seasoning or marination as it was really juicy and tender that just makes you swoon for more! It was perfect with the umami from the beans that brought out slight nutty and crunch and it was a hearty side!

The succulent rack of lamb is an ideal match made in heaven with the Yalumba The Signature 2013 which is made primarily of Shiraz & Cabernet Sauvignon from the Barossa Valley.. This is a rich & complex wine which has the best of both worlds in terms of taste as the austere Cabernet Sauvignon showcases the black currant, eucalpytus and the aromatic spices that mingles exceptionally with the dark plums, liquorice and peppery notes of the Shiraz! 

After a sumptous appetizer and main course being paired with excellent Yalumba Virgilius Viognier, Yalumba Tri-centerary Grenache & Yalumba The Signature, we finally moved to the sweet note of this fantastic barossan dinner which is the dessert section or as they referred it as After! 
Soft Centered Chocolate Pudding 
From their After menu selection, we decided to share a selection of 3 dessert dishes which proves to be too tempting not to order them! And so we did! 
The first dessert to arrive is the Soft Centered Chocolate Pudding that is quite elegantly plated that was accompanied by the poached pear and cream..
This may sound quite odd as to the pairing of the chocolate pudding with a poached pear and cream but when you ate the pudding alone it is actually rather rich with a slight bitterness that is from the dark bitter chocolate which was used.. To our amazement that this combination works beautifully! The moment you slice the pudding into half, it reveals a soft and guey centre that oozes out a generous amount of chocolate that just makes you can't wait to eat it! The chocolate pudding cake is really soft and light as a cloud..

A pure enjoyment to savor every bite with alongside the beautiful Yalumba Octavius which are using grapes from the Old Vine Shiraz that has an established root system which promises an intense and powerful fruit profile of the shiraz like the dark cherries, ripe plums, dried figs and also elegant mouthfeel on the palate with a smooth and silky tannin together with secondary notes of dark chocolate, cinnamon, cloves and herbs! 

Passionfruit Souffle 
With such a luscious chocolate dessert that proves to be fulfilling for ever chocoholic to fantasize about, we moved on to the 2nd dessert which falls in another spectrum of flavour! 
In the menu is known as the Souffle but you can check with the fellow service staff to find out the flavour of the souffle as it changes! We are eternally lucky in the matters of food and wine relating as to our delight, the Souffle flavour for dinner is Passionfruit Souffle!

It is a surprising delight as this showcases their own local produce and also brought more of a citrus and sourish taste profile to our dessert tasting for dinner.. 
Passionfruit souffle requires us to patiently wait for it's costume decoration for around 20-25 minutes.. But the wait is totally worth it!
As the Passionfruit souffle looks stunning! The presentation was rather straightforward but it also provides you the opportunity to play around and also to mix and match with hot and cold elements and temperature.. The souffle was really airy and fluffy and it was quite sturdy despite it has a delicate texture and it was not overly sweet but with a strong hint of the passionfruit note.. When it was mix with the passionfruit sauce, the pairing brought out the acidity, floral, lemons and lime alongside the vanilla aroma that goes amazingly well and it helps with the passionfruit being that it cleanses the palate with acidity..
Three Little Tarts
Every good things must come to an end! In this matter, it is a sweet and beautiful end with a trio of dessert which is called Three Little Tarts
This is beautifully presented in a thin log that has 3 petite tarts of varying degree of sweetness and the element of fruit being added into the dessert to provide more taste, texture and flavour rather being all plain and sweet.. The little tarts flavours are not consistent as it all depends on the chef creation of the day but it's what makes dining exciting and refreshing! 

The far end of the log is the petite tarts with fresh diced strawberries which is beautifully made and it was a pie of 1 bite only like an amuse bouche.. The tart is really refreshingly sour from the strawberries that compliments well with the sweet cream of the tart.. The middle tart is a blowtorched lemon meringue tart that brought out the pleasant tartness of the tart that has a sweet and marshmallowy taste of the meringue.. The last one is a surprise as the little tarts contains pieces of caramelized apple that brought out the aroma and sensation of eating an apple pie!

Amazing and scrumptious local food in Barossa Valley!
Great place for an amazing food and wine pairing dinner!

Ambience: 4/5
Food: 5/5
Price: 3/5
Service: 4/5

Must Try:
 Carpaccio or Black Angus 
SA Oysters
Blue swimmer crab macaroni
Rack or Lamb
VBG fries

Vintners Bar & Grill 
Cnr Stockwell & Angaston Road
South Australia 

Opening Hours: 

12-2: 30pm

6: 30-9pm


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