Obviously, I did the Swan Valley Food and Wine Trail. How could I not?
After some windy, rainy weather early last week, it cleared up to be sweet and sunny by the time Wednesday morning rolled around, so we decided that yes, it was time to drive around for a day of edible fun.
First things first. We began our day with brunch at Taylor's Art & Coffee House (510 Great Northern Highway, Middle Swan).
|Taylor's Art and Coffee House, Swan Valley.|
This is a quaint, sustainable cafe run by the Taylor family. Many of ingredients in the dishes here are sourced from homegrown seasonal produce from their own gardens. I like the "farm to plate" concept and was happy to find a place like this in Swan Valley.
We started off with the "soup of the day" - creamy corn with truffle and parmesan. This is a lovely, rustic soup with blended corn providing roughage and texture, parmesan kicking in a sharp saltiness and the gentlest blink-and-you'll-miss-it hint of truffle teasing our taste buds. The focaccia bread on the side was fresh, warm and had such a crunchy crust - so wonderful with this homemade soup.
|Taylor's Cafe: small soup of the day - creamy corn with truffle and parmesan ($9).|
And then the mains.
We tried this chermoula chicken salad with roasted sweet potato, beetroot, chickpeas, spinach, spiced yoghurt and garlic walnut crumble, just because it sounded so fabulous. The flavours didn't pop as much as we expected, but it was still alright - and very wholesome.
|Taylor's Cafe: chermoula chicken salad ($23).|
We also decided upon the braised organic beef meatballs, served with dressed greens, sour cream and crusty bread. This was super comforting on a cool winter's day. The meatballs were tender and moreish. The tomato sauce was a bit heavy on the salt, but it can be somewhat countered with the sour cream and more of that focaccia, so we can kind of forgive that. The salad on the side was mostly leafy greens, but also had bits of pumpkin and goat cheese, and it was perfectly seasoned.
|Taylor's Cafe: braised organic beef meatballs ($18).|
All in all, we were won over by the down-to-earth food with fresh ingredients and generous servings. Moreover, the young man waiting the tables was friendly and quick with a smile. They've got the countryside charm going on! I'd recommend Taylor's Cafe for breakfast, brunch or lunch - this was a great first stop for our Swan Valley Food and Wine Trail experience. The only downside, perhaps, is that we were so full afterwards that we could barely fit anything else into our tummies for the rest of the trail - so let that be a word of caution, ha.
I'll soon follow up with we did for the food and wine trail. Stay tuned!