Early start again today, plan was to visit Salamanca Markets then at 9:30 join our winery tour for a day of wine tasting and then have a free afternoon.
All met in the lobby at 7:15am, for a leisurely 10min walk to Salamanca area. Everyone was well rugged up, temp outside was 11 degrees 🥶 , always fun listening to the commentary on how cold it is and how many layers of clothes we had on. One big plus side of cold weather – you feel fresh a lot more then in the heat which does drain one’s energy levels faster (in my opinion).
Walk to the markets was pleasant, passing Constitution dock. This place was so picturesque, I am kicking myself for not taking any morning street pics ☹️ .
Got to the Salamanca markets , markets were not open yet, people were finalising the stalls and the members were still setting up crowd control gates and other things. These markets are on every Saturday from 8:30am to 3pm, which gave us close to an hour for breakfast.
Our wine tour operator had recommended Banjo’s as a place close to the markets to grab a quick bite. We were expecting this to be a boutique coffee breakfast place, little did we know this is a franchised bakery, with stores all around Hobart.
Still the experience was not bad at all, coffee was great and we settled for a mix of pastries and breakfast pies/rolls. The place had a much better variety for breakfast pies, rolls and pastries than we do back in Brisbane – kudos Banjo’s.
Breakfast done, time now to visit the famous Salamanca markets.
The place was getting filled in with all stalls now open but as it was still quite early crowd was only just building.
Walking around the stalls, the first stop for the guys was at the 7K Distillery stall. A Tasmanian boutique Gin distillery. It was only 8:30 but never too early to try Gin! Tried their 3 Gin flavours – Raspberry, Modern and Dry Chilli Winter edition. Wow, amazing tastes, am in love with the Modern version that goes so well with an orange – am definitely ordering that one back in Brisbane.
One great tip from the lady at the stall – try and use dried fruit with Gin rather than fresh cuts, apparently they bring out better flavours – something to keep in mind for Gin lovers.
The Gin tasting did provide some alcohol heat that was most welcome in the cold :).
More walking about. Nita found a hat stall that had my style of hats, got a nice Stanton Grey wool version, this became my go to for the next few days in Hobart – what a find 👍. As there were many stalls, the 3 of us were doing things separately.
Me & Nita were mostly done with the browsing and decided to head out of the markets to other areas of Salamanca – still had more than 40 mins before our Wine tour operator would collect us. Time to explore more areas.
Found a nice fountain area close by to Banjo’s – good photo opportunity.
We all met up at Banjo’s again and then headed to meeting point for Winery Tour – this was just around the corner at the end of the Salamanca Markets. There we were greeted by Stel from StelaVino wine tours. Great guy, he had a 12 seater mini van. Todays group had 2 other members plus our group of 6.
Making our way out of the Hobart CBD, it was great having Stel give a running commentary on some of the sights plus the history about wine making in Tasmania and why this region was one of the best in the world for a certain variety of grapes.
Did not know that Tasmania was one of the driest places on earth where the temperate did not fluctuate too much, it was due to the ocean surrounds that regulated the temps and maintained a consistent cool but not COLD environment – which was perfect for wine grapes.
This weather was great for most of the white wines and some pinot noir light varieties, the cold weather did not particular suit the heavy varieties like Shiraz – pity as that is what me, Nita and Vik appreciated more.
First stop was Derwent Wine Estate. What a location, next to the River Derwent.
We were given a private room where Stel had pre-organised for the wine tasting. There were around 6-8 varieties to be tasted, all along we were being given good advise and tips on what a wine tasting process should be about – Sight, nose, and taste. So something new for us, wine tasting scores out of 20, with 3 points for sight, 7 for nose and 10 for taste. Another interesting but hard learning when tasting wine, you are to leave wine in your mouth and breath in through the mouth whilst leaving the wine in the mouth area and avoid swallowing it in your wind pipe. A few coughs were to be expected but when it worked you could definitely taste , smell the wine in your mouth much more differently than normal drinking.
Tried a range of white, rose wines, but it was the reisling that won some of us over with its nice sweet taste. Our group was definitely not a Chardonnay or dry white wine lovers.
During the tasting it was interesting to notice how our ladies table was different to the guys. Whilst we were drinking up all the wines even if we did not like it, the ladies did not hide the fact that they did not enjoy that drop :(. After each first sip of the wine, if no good, it was going straight into a glass that was there for water. Whilst glasses on our table were empty, on the girls table this water glass was filling up rapidly with an interesting colour as all different wines ended up in there!🤣
Wine tasting done, now to take some more pics at the beautiful location – ladies were up for that!
Stel was quite surprised on the number of pics we kept taking 😳, and had to keep pushing us to get back on the mini-van.
Next stop was lunch at Cafe Czegs, our lunch was pre-ordered whilst we were at Derwent Winery, so no waiting when we arrived.
Drive was a short 20 mins before we entered the most beautiful town of Richmond.
This is a must visit, It is a colonial town with cafes and boutiques. Our stop was Cafe Czeg’s – what a beautiful boutique cafe, selling everything from pastries, breads, scones, cakes to full lunch menu’s. The interior was colonial with separate nooks theme’d differently. Definitely a place I could visit again.
We were seated in a private room and meals followed soon. I had ordered the duck fried rice – it was so well cooked – tasted yummy!
Lunch was followed by coffee and Honey vanilla cake – not a big fan of Honey, however the cake did taste good and I could have it as it did not have too much honey flavour (good for me not so for the honey lovers). Good lunch break and a must visit place for anyone visiting Hobart who likes coffee & cakes.
Back in the mini-bus, next stop was the Puddleduck Winery. Along the way we passed the Richmond Bridge – the oldest stone span bridge in Australia, built by convicts. Normally this is a drive by, however Stel had already realised how much we liked taking pics, and without us asking found a good spot to have a short photo break with good views to the bridge!
We could not say no to that!
Back in the mini-bus and drive off to Puddleduck Vineyard.
Our table of 8 was already laid out with wines ready for tasting. To be honest, none of us were enjoying these white varieties and by now Stel was also getting a hint of how much we enjoyed these wines – not. Went with the tasting routines for a bit, but it was not long before we left the tasting to roam about. This place was built really well for lunches, and was focused on family fun.
I think the missing piece in this Wine tasting tour was the lack of cheese platter or nibbles. Maybe that is not the norm, but definitely our group needs some nibbles to go with wine. Still overall a good experience and learnt a few new things about wines.
Back at the hotel, thanked Stel for the tour and the experience.
It was around 3pm and we needed a coffee, dropped off things in the room and we all headed out again looking for a coffee stop. Headed to the waterfront area, hoping to find something there. Along the way passed the oldest licensed pub in Australia. Along the waterfront we had to take a pitstop at the floating Ice Creamery – some amazing selections there but no coffee.
Looked around a bit with no luck for coffees, finally ended up at the MacQ1 Hotel Lounge, no cakes but they did have coffees – that was enough to get us a bit revived.
We headed back to the hotel post coffee for a much needed siesta – dinner was booked at the Drunken Admiral at 7:30, we had over 3 hours to kill or rest.
I could not really sleep much, so by 6:30, me and Nita decided to go walkabouts around the waterfront, we were going to meet the gang direct at the Drunken Admiral for dinner.
It was a good opportunity to take more pics at the water front.
Around 7:20 we made our way to Drunken Admiral
The place did not look much from the outside except for the big couldron outside. Saw others taking pics in the couldron, we had to do the same:
The two of us made our way into the restaurant (rest of the gang were not here yet). The moment you step into this place, it is like being transported into a different world. Everything is sea themed with a feel of the colonial ship and sailors. Soon after the the gang were all there and we were seated in our nook.
The food and drinks did not disappoint, in fact it blew us away. The oysters were so good. Then we had the amazing Chowder, seafood mixed grill, Salmon and couple of other dishes which I cannot remember :(. All of these were exceptionally tasty…. it was just wow.
For desserts we ordered the Belgium Chocolate Fudge cake, Hazelnut Brûlée and the One Legged Tom. Whilst they were all amazing, the Belgium Chocolate fudge cake is to die for !!
What a seafood experience we had here, amazing food!! and the desserts, OMG, we could not fault anything. Drunken Admiral needs to be No.1 on the list of restaurants when coming to Hobart – this place is the best!!
Made our way back to the hotel in the cold of night, it had been an amazing day finished off with the best food :). Called it a night, tomorrow was going to a big day of travelling – heading off to Freycinet and surrounds.