What is the hardest aspect to operating a good restaurant.... consistency. I had been to Botanica a bout 3 years ago - and it was a sensation. This weekend I went back with a group and if possible, it was even better. The Restaurant just looks so good. It was almost a full moon - the vineyard was a silver shadowy vision punctuated with many a kangaroo - and the restaurant in the middle and beautifully lit, created a perfect visual image. The restaurant was full and our table of 10 caused not the slightest concern. The welcome by all staff was warm and generous and the limited menu offering (pared for the large number) offered an excellent selection. My scallops were fat, plump and unctuous. The mash and peas just seemed to ooze out of the scallops and combined to give a really sensuous taste. My Duck Confit - was crisp skinned - whilst the flesh was soft and slightly gelatinous with the accompanying peppered beetroot and roasted garlic - finished off a superb dish. The Hunter Valley and Associates only wine list - gave a good cross section of the region. The staff were excellent, friendly, helpful and above all patient. On that night, our group were not an easy one to handle - but everybody had a great hunter experience. well worth the drive out along Hermitage Road.
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