The Source, Berriedale, Tasmania
February 17, 2008
The Source is always mentioned in articles or guidebooks for tourists to Hobart because of its spectacular setting and the stories about its site, The Morilla Estate, on a point overlooking the Derwent River 12 km north of Hobart.
Morilla is now owned by David Walsh, a mathematical genius and computer nerd from nearby Glenorchy, who made a fortune gambling on horses and other games using computer models. Originally a vineyard and winery, Morilla now also includes a brewery, chalet accommodations, The Source and the Museum of Old and New Art, under construction. Scheduled to open next year, MONA will have a collection Walsh values at A$55,000,000 featuring the fundamental themes of sex and death.
Linda and I went to The Source for lunch on February 12, 2008, after a visit to the lovely Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens further down the Derwent. We received a warm welcome and were seated by the glass wall overlooking the river. Wanting to sample the estate’s wines we ordered by the glass, skipping the chance to taste their own Moo Beer. The brut sparkling wine was nice, a bit tart. The rosé sparkling tasted like a kir royale.
Linda started with the Semolina herb gnocchi, capsicum, eggplant and leek salpicon, Thorpe Farm goat’s cheese, Evandale Estate extra virgin olive oil. She thought that the gnocchi were fairly tasteless potato patties, but that the eggplant was nice.
My starter was Blue-eyed trevally, Calabrian potatoes, olive cheeks, sautéed rainbow chard, caper agrodolce. The fish was delicious, but not “Crispy-skinned” as the waiter had said it would be. The vegetables were plentiful. With this I had a glass of the 2006 Morilla “Muse” Chardonnay; it seemed more like an okay sauvignon blanc to me.
My main course was Anise braised beef cheek, oxtail, potato and marrow ‘calzone’, sweet carrot cream, pickled turnip. The flavor had been braised out of the beef, but I liked the carrot purée. We each had a glass of the 2006″Muse” Pinot Noir which we liked so much that we bought a bottle at the tasting bar on the way out.
We skipped dessert.
And so we were subject once again to the Australian curse of trying to impress people with overly elaborate cuisine.