Food Drink

NOW OPEN: former Maximilian’s spot transforms as Chef Kane Pollard launches Ondeen

Adelaide Hills’ iconic 1850s landmark, formerly known as Maximilian’s, is gearing up for a grand transformation.

Adelaide Hills’ iconic 1850s landmark, formerly known as Maximilian’s, is gearing up for a grand transformation.

It has officially opened as Ondeen, an exquisite tasting destination, thanks to the creative minds of celebrated chef Kane Pollard and the artisan distiller, Full Circle Spirits. Nestled amidst verdant vineyards and offering panoramic views, Ondeen is poised to redefine the food and tourism landscape of the Adelaide Hills.

At Ondeen, visitors will embark on a journey that celebrates the essence of the Adelaide Hills, marrying local produce with innovative culinary and distilling techniques. From locally sourced ingredients to botanicals foraged from the property’s surroundings, every offering will pay homage to the region’s rich terroir.

The new venture kicks off with an intimate tasting space within the homestead’s renovated wing, featuring tasting plates specifically crafted to complement Full Circle Spirits’ luxurious concoctions. Under the guidance of award-winning head distiller, Rose Kentish, guests can look forward to an immersive experience that not only highlights the craftsmanship behind the spirits but also educates on the nuances of flavours and aromas.

Rose Kentish shares her excitement about offering visitors an up-close look at the distillation process, along with workshops where guests can learn to craft their own cocktails.

“Visiting Ondeen will be an immersive learning experience for guests, who will be given a close-up view of makers, whether they’re in the kitchen or distiller’s apothecary,” Rose said. 

“In tastings and workshops, visitors will be guided to use their senses to recognise flavours and aromas, and in some, they will be able to create their own cocktails using spirits such as Full Circle’s Honey Malt Liqueur or Orange and Bay Gin.

“We’re looking forward to welcoming guests and encouraging them through aroma and flavour to explore the abundance and beauty of the 35th Parallel South. Stop in for a drink with friends, or stay a while and enjoy a guided tasting or a deep dive masterclass,” Rose continued. 

Chef Kane Pollard, renowned for his commitment to sustainability and the culinary arts, is equally enthusiastic about the collaboration. Pollard, who also heads Topiary and serves as Tasting Australia’s 2024 Food Curator, will bring his unique small-plate menu to Ondeen.

His menu, inspired by the locale and the changing seasons, promises to complement the spirits perfectly, showcasing his philosophy of utilizing everything available and surrounding.

Kane explains, “Our collaboration presents the beginning of what will grow into a world-class experiential food and tourism destination, Ondeen, which will act as a lighthouse for local producers and artisans. 

“This will be sustainable, personalised tourism that sits in harmony for and within the local landscape and community,” Kane said.  

“I always say use everything and use what’s around you. For example, the needles from the heritage pines and wild fennel pollen will be used in parts of our menu.

“We’re also repurposing the waste from the spent grain used to distil the Full Circle Spirits whisky by drying it down, grounding it into a flour and then using it in our daily fresh baked sourdough. We’re really creating that ‘full circle’ vibe,” Kane explained.

Managing Director and Co-Founder of Ondeen, Deborah Kingsbury, further explains the long-term vision for the property. 

“Our aim is to celebrate craftsmanship of all kinds and create one of South Australia’s most extraordinary visitor and dining experiences, inspiring a deeper appreciation for the journey from farm to table. 

“Our vision will be a legacy piece that we are sure all South Australians can be proud of,” Deborah concluded. 

With a masterplan for the site to be unveiled soon, Ondeen invites investors to be part of what promises to be one of South Australia’s most extraordinary ventures.

Where: 15 Onkaparinga Valley Rd, Verdun SA 5245, Australia

For more information, click here.

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