A Food Trail with a difference: Best known for its world-class beaches, the Sunshine Coast and its dazzling hinterland, also proffers some of the best produce on the plate. Whether it's beachside dining or wandering the lush hills of the Hinterland, there's something to whet every appetite.
Glasshouse Gourmet Snails
Start your day at a snail's pace in the glorious Glasshouse Mountains and for something different, head to Queensland's only snail farm. More than 500,000 of these slippery critters are shipped to restaurants around the country and you'll find them on the menu at Spicers Clovelly in Montville. If you've got some spare cash, you can buy snail eggs, known as white caviar, for $2000 a kilogram.
Home to some of the state's best dairy farms, Maleny in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland is well known for its cheese. Enjoy a morning cuppa at Maleny Cheese and try some of the beautiful yoghurt and cheese here. At Cedar Creek Cheeserie, Trevor Hart creates buffalo-milk mozzarella and haloumi using traditional farmhouse techniques. End your cheesy tour at Kenilworth Cheeses, a former Kraft cheese factory, where you can taste the Red Malling Vintage dating back to the 1900s.
www.malenycheese.com.au; www.facebook.com/pages/Cedar-Street-Cheeserie/105150449584001; www.kenilworthcountryfoods.com.au
The Ginger Factory
Head down the hill and on to Yandina to spice up your taste buds with some ginger. You could spend a whole day here with rides, tours, eateries and shopping galore. There's plenty of ginger products and you can even decorate your own cookie creation at The Cookie Jar.
Spirit House Cooking School
Save some room for lunch, because Yandina's spirit house takes beautiful local produce and infuses it with Thai taste sensations. The result is one of Australia's most popular restaurants.
The Eumundi Markets
If you're fortunate to be on the Sunshine Coast on a Wednesday or a Saturday, these markets are a must. There's more than 600 stalls bursting with arts, crafts and local produce which you can take home with you.
Late afternoon and you're in Noosa. It's considered a sin to be on the Coast and not have an ice-cream and this comes with a show. Right in the heart of Hastings Street, enjoy your ice-cream with the dramatic twist of liquid nitrogen. Your Turkish Delight, Salty Popcorn and Lemon Meringue Pie flavour will be engulfed billows of nitrogen clouds.
Noosa Beach House
Noosa. So many restaurants, so little time. One of the newest additions to Hastings Street is acclaimed chef Peter Kuruvita and his Noosa Beach House restaurant. Expect flavoursome local produce combined with Kuruvita's trademark Sri Lankan spices.
Honey Bee Farmstay: You have to see this place to bee-lieve it! Seven magical cottages surrounded by peaceful gardens and a bush setting. Guests can learn about honey and native stingless bees, tending and harvesting the farm, vegetable and herb garden sessions.
Husk & Honey Husk & Honey is the place to enjoy Australia's best gluten and grain free breads, specialty cakes, savoury loaves, all day breakfast and of course the Sunshine Coast's best coffee - Tim Adams Specialty Coffee.
Strawberry Fields: Play farmer for a day and pick your own strawberries or choose from a range of ready-packed strawberries and stop for a picnic lunch in the gardens.
Behind the scenes at Maleny Dairies
Take a peek behind the scenes at Maleny Dairies with the Dairy Tour. Pet baby calves, watch a hand-milking demonstration and visit the on-site factory to see the bottling process, cold room and dry store. Finish the tour the dairy's yummy flavoured milks and pick up some milk to take home. www.malenydairies.com
Hinterland Feijoas (15 minutes from Eumundi)
Peter Heineger and Sally Hookey established one of Australia's first commercial feijoa orchards in Australia and Australia's only certified organic feijoa orchard in 2008. Since then they have been busily developing a range of delicious feijoa products such as Feijoa and Boysenberry jelly, and a range of feijoa balsamic glazes, which is believed to be a world first. W: www.hinterlandfeijoas.com.au
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Author: Tourism and Events Queensland
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