Green ants sitting on top of a dish may be somewhat surprising at first but a dinner at Adelaide’s Orana is all about the unexpected and delicious. This chic restaurant that seats just 25, offers a sophisticated menu featuring 18 to 20 small courses devised by Scottish born, Adelaide-based Jock Zonfrillo – ex-Magill Estate restaurant.
The cuisine features complex dishes using indigenous ingredients to showcase an amazing array of flavours and texture with South Australian produce taking centre stage. Dinner starts with small portions of potato damper that you cook on a bowl of coals yourself, followed by tasty Goolwa pippies and beach succulents that pop in your mouth. Other starter highlights include kangaroo and native peppers followed by the choko, bush honey and green ant dish – yes, those green ants surprise with a citrus flavour.
The chicken liver parfait and wattle seed crumb is a riot of textures and tastes as is the feral guava, desert lime, riberry and tea tree course. In the larger dishes, the Adelaide Hills Marron with Geraldton wax and watercress is a standout with the South Devon beef, lilly pilly and smoked potato and leek just as good.
A selection of sweet treats is a great finale with the set buttermilk, strawberry and eucalyptus, the star. Service is exceptional and a wine pairing is offered along with a non-alcoholic juice option. Orana – it means welcome in some Aboriginal languages – is well named, as diners are indeed welcomed and spoilt with so many culinary surprises and indigenous treats. restaurantorana.com