Royal Mail Hotel opens new restaurant

02 November, 2017 by
Madeline Woolway

A new addition to the Royal Mail Hotel in Dunkeld has been unveiled. Wickens at Royal Mail Hotel has been built in a new location on the property, which is positioned on the southern tip of the Grampians.

Aiming to create an even stronger connection between land and dining table, the restaurant’s seasonal menu reflects the micro-climate of Dunkeld.

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The venue offers three Chef’s Tasting Menu experiences: eight course, five course and vegetarian. A Chef’s Table in the kitchen is also available for up to four guests.

According to the restaurant’s namesake, chef Robin Wickens, diners can expect “culinary textures that emulate the garden with mulched greens, soils, foams, purées, petals, micro herbs, dried and crisp leaves, jus, juice and brews, such as vegetable infusions and teas.”

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The menus will change frequently, dependent on the produce harvested by Wicken’s and his team from the venue’s orchards, olive groves and organic 1.2 hectare kitchen garden, which grows more than 400 edible species per year.

Beef and lamb will come from the Dunkeld Pastoral Company, which rears cow and sheep specifically for Wickens, allowing the kitchen team to manage the entire process from breed selection, grazing, slaughter, aging and butchery. Dairy will come from local farmers.

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Wickens at Royal Mail Hotel also provides three wine matches, drawing on the Royal Mail Hotel’s wine cellar, which holds the largest privately-owned collection of Bordeaux and Burgundy in the Southern Hemisphere. Food and beverage manager and sommelier Matthew Lance develops the matches alongside Wickens from the on-site collection of more than 28,000 bottles.

Designed by Bryne Architects, a Melbourne-based design studio, the overall concept was shaped by floor to ceiling windows that provide views to Mt Sturgeon and Mt Abrupt, creating a structure that conveys the connection between the restaurant and the natural environment.

A winding bush trail connects the Royal Mail Hotel to its new restaurant, which features Australian hardwoods, sheepskin leather and sandstone sourced from Dunkeld’s local quarry.

Wickens at Royal Mail Hotel is open for dinner Wednesday to Sunday and for lunch on weekends. The dining room seats up to 60 people, the private dining room can seat up to 14 and the Chef’s Table can seat up to four guests.