I expected great things from Spicers Peak Lodge and I wasn’t disappointed. On arrival, Manager Andrew, greeted Al and I with a warm welcome, leading us into a spacious lounge room complete with open fire offering us a glass of Cloudy Bay Pelorus sparkling. A very nice way to start our two days of indulgence.
Our room with king size bed and wood fireplace had shuttered windows opening onto a great expanse of green grass and fig trees. The whole place was covered in cloud the whole time we were there. This really added to the ambience of what we knew was going to be a special few days of rest and relaxation.
As beautiful as the lodge is, this blog isn’t about the accommodation. This blog is all about the food. Food, food and more food. Not a place to visit if you use the word diet often. (It’s never used in our house). Our first night meal was a five course degustation with matching wines but first guests enjoy a drink in the lounge area at 6.30 pm with complimentary canapes followed by a cosy dining room experience.
- Cannelonni of wild rabbit, crispy leek
- Red Emperor, wakame sand, soy, mirin and cuttle fish
- Assiette of Pittsworth Quail
- Darling Downs strip loin beef, heirloom beetroot, sweet and sour shallots
- Chocolate and raspberry fondant, banana parfait
After dinner, on arrival back in our room, the bed had been turned down and on each bedside table was a Dello Mano chocolate brownie (like we really needed it) and strangely a bottle of water from Norway. Nonetheless, it was a very attractive bottle of water.
The breakfast menu really exceeded our expectations with at least 14 choices on the menu. I opted for honey roasted granola, poached fruit and vanilla yoghut followed by poached eggs, sauteed mushrooms, wilted spinach, potato rosti and smoked bacon. Al devoured lodge-made crumpets, whipped butter and honeycomb from the lodge bees followed by the best Eggs Benedict he had ever eaten. The following morning (my birthday) I treated myself to Valrohna chocolate blinis, creme fraiche and berries. Truly a breakfast indulgence! (pictured below). Other items on the breakfast menu that really took my interest were the smoked egg, slow cooked for two hours, thyme roasted mushrooms and chevre. Lodge-made baked beans, 12 hour braised Warwick pork belly and poached eggs and Croque Monsieur with gruyere.
After breakfast we had arranged for the lodge to drive us down the mountain to Ron’s Horse-riding. I’m an avid lover of all animals but horses really hold a special place in my heart and as we were celebrating my birthday, a horse-ride was a must do. Ron and his assistant Laura, took us on the most beautiful ride. This wasn’t your usual run of the mill trail-ride, it was a proper horse-ride with great company on well cared for horses. Definitely a highlight for me (not so sure Al was equally as excited by the ride as I was) but he certainly coped well and by the end of it we were both ready for our three course lunch back up at the lodge.
Lunch was delightful.
- Pea, Serrano ham and goats curd risotto
- Mahi Mahi, creamed leeks, Lyonnaise potato and saffron bourblanc (probably the best fish main meal I’ve ever enjoyed).
- Olive oil sponge, strawberry mousse and cinnamon custard
Lunch was followed by a late afternoon massage and facial in the lodge Spa Ainse. I actually wasn’t sure I could manage another meal but that’s the thing about Spicers Peak, you really can’t help yourself. Evening meals are either a five course or a seven course degustation but I’m sure if you really couldn’t manage it, chef would happily make you a cheese sandwich to take back to your room.
Final night dinner menu;
- Herbed gnocchi and sage beurre noisette
- Heirloom tomato, seared scallop and dill
- Pheasant ballontine, pumpkin, celery and red peppers
- Wild venison, smoked potato, snowpea and cranberry reduction
- Chiboust, pineapple sorbet and berry
The venison was the dish of the evening closely followed by dessert. The combination of moist venison, smokey potato, crisp snowpea and cranberry was absolutely mouth-watering. I could have easily enjoyed a big bowl of the smokey, creamy potato mash all by itself. I’ll definitely be trying to recreate this at home.
The evening finished with Merlo coffee at the bar. Al casually mentioned that he’d love some nuts to take back to the room to snack on while watching some late night TV. Service was so good, that five minutes later our lovely waiter appeared with a bowl of nuts. Attention to detail at Spicers is brilliant.
If you are looking for a special place, without children, to really relax, reconnect with nature and enjoy wonderful food, then you’d be hard pressed to find somewhere as good as Spicers Peak under two hours from Brisbane. It’s right on our doorstep yet you feel a world away. The staff should feel very proud of what they are creating and this couple will definitely be back.
Oh, and just as we were preparing to leave, we’re given a gift of a small bottle of honey from the Spicers Peak Lodge bees. A very sweet ending to a wonderful getaway.