10 Halloran Drive, Thulimbah, Qld 4376
Just recently I was asked why we go out to restaurants so often. Doesn’t it cost a lot? What do we get out of it? I really had to have a good old think about these questions. The best answer I can come up with is, it’s the sensory experiences.
Life’s all about experiences and Food Trekking gives us the some extraordinary sensory pleasures of sight, sound, touch, smell and taste, and the joy of being swept away by the atmosphere of each venue. To interact with the warm and creative people who welcome you into their world. And the giddy delight of tasting superb food prepared and cooked the way it was meant to be. And importantly, to share our experiences with others who may be inspired to start their own food trek adventure.
Our latest little adventure took place only an hour away from our home on the Darling Downs. We thought it was strange that we haven’t really explored the Granite Belt wine region of Southern Queensland yet. So we took off in the car and took our chances, asking the advice of locals along the way. If you don’t know the area, its south east of the state from Warwick along the New England Highway to just past Stanthorpe and boasts some of the countries best wineries and restaurants.
We found ourselves looking for a place we were told made the best apple pies ever. That’s a big call but it was worth investigating. A few miles north of Stanthorpe we found what we were looking for, an apple cider and juice factory that had a shed café back from the road. The weather was cold and wet but when we ran from the car into the big shed we were surprised to find a busy restaurant café warmed by the large brick fire place in the middle of the room. The atmosphere is cosy and welcoming. We found ourselves a table and were immediately greeted by one of the staff who was more than happy to answer all of our questions.
Suttons Farm is a juice factory, cidery, distillery and a licensed café. It’s open from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm seven days a week. Everything used in the food is either grown on the farm or grown locally. The lunch menu has many excellent meat dishes and pies and is available until 2.30 pm each afternoon. Deserts are the speciality dishes and you can enjoy the softest most moist sticky date pudding I have ever tasted. Sutton’s farm is legendary for its apple pie amongst a myriad of other farm made products available to the public. Many articles, reviews and even TV shows have raved about the café and the delicious mouth watering pastry encasing the freshest juicy apples ever combined into a pie. The accompanying home made apple cider ice cream is unbelievable and the apple syrup drizzled over the whipped cream makes dreams come true.
After you have had your fill of gorgeous food cooked by amazingly talented university linguistics lecturer turned Chef, Chris Weckert, you can indulge in the free juice and apple brandy tasting offered to all patrons. David and Roslyn Sutton have produced over a dozen different varieties of apple juice and other apple products such as cider, syrup, brandy and conserves. It’s all there for you to taste.
We really were blown away by the amount of wonderful farm products being produced and sold at Sutton’s Farm. You must put this on your list of places to visit; you won’t regret it for a minute. The food is absolutely delicious. The atmosphere so welcoming you won’t want to leave. I know we will be back again for more apple pie. Next time I’m in for some goat pie or any number of gourmet delights Chris creates when the right produce comes into season.
I believe we have found the best apple pie in Australia. To prove me wrong, you’ll just have to make the trip and taste it for yourself. You can even pick your own amazing apples to take home. So start planning your weekend at the Granite Belt wine country and visit Sutton’s Farm for something special. You won’t be disappointed.
Kelly’s Take on Sutton’s Farm
I have driven past it hundreds of times and never knew it was there until my boss ate there and told us how wonderful it was. We were headed to Stanthorpe and decided to check it out. Great decision! From the outside, it is an apple farm and a packing shed, but when you walk through the door you know you have found something special. I loved the fireplace in the middle of the room and the bottle collection and antique furniture and the free tastings of apple brandy and anything else that you fancy.
Homemade apple pies made with apples from the farm are their speciality. With light flaky crust I have not tasted since I ate pies that my grandmother used to make. These pies have between 25 and 32 apples in each one and are totally delicious.
They are served with apple ice-cream and a drizzle of homemade apple syrup, the perfect thing for a cold rainy day. Can’t wait to go back!