Carool paddock-to-plate restaurant pleasing palates
A NEW paddock-to-plate restaurant has been generating a buzz among foodies since it opened in the Tweed Shire just two months ago.
Potager - a Kitchen Garden at Carool boasts stunning vistas and 17 raised vegetable beds on its four hectare site.
Owners Peter Burr and Gareth Leslie, with the help of a part-time gardener, grow some of the produce they serve up in a rustic renovated homestead which can seat 30.
But that’s not the only way they are keeping Potager, which is French for kitchen garden, hyper local.
The food is served on crockery custom-made by Murwillumbah Potters and the bespoke tables were produced by their neighbours Lobo Workshop.
If they didn’t grow it, there’s a good chance the produce was sourced from Murwillumbah Farmers Markets on a Wednesday morning.
Chef Gareth, who likes to keep a low-profile, was trained in Europe and has had varied experience from French cuisine to raw vegan food and private catering.
The couple moved to the area a decade ago from inner-city Sydney and live in a home just metres from their restaurant.
Peter said the only thing they miss from their previous city lives is the diversity of food varieties.
He believes that’s one of the reasons they’ve struck a chord with locals some of whom return to Potager weekly.
A good percentage of them are also Sydney escapees who enjoy the diverse menu which is changed up regularly to reflect seasonal produce.
Currently the main menu features beef briskit with kimchi slaw, endame and fresh vegetables with steamed buns and their most popular dish, Peruvian fish stew.
The Bonito Crudo cured with citrus and dotted with edible flowers is a explosion of colour. Starters include beetroot and vodka cured ocean trout and vegetarian dishes barley risotto with marinated fetta and fattoush with a falafel scotch egg.
Main meals are around $28 and starters around $15.
Peter said the Northern Rivers had recently gained some top notch new eateries and was on the cusp of becoming a major foodie destination.
“People’s palates have become so more discerning because of the plethora of cooking shows,” said Peter.
“They want more than flathead and chips.”
Potager at 502 Carool Rd is open from Friday to Saturdays for lunch and dinner, and for brunch and lunch on Sundays.