8 beer gardens you have to sit in this summer

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By Cat Lever

The sun is out, the days are getting longer, and did someone say beer garden?

We went in search of the perfect South Australian outdoor oasis, and we found heaps! Here are eight of the best.

Cathedral Hotel – North Adelaide

Have you been searching for a beautiful heritage listed North Adelaide bar with a renovated rooftop? The search is over! The Cathedral took out SA’s Best Pub Burger in the 2016 SA Pub Burger Challenge, so you can be sure the classic pub fare won’t disappoint.

Here’s their menu, we recommend the beef burger and a glass of Jim Barry Watervale Riesling (Clare Valley).

The sun sets over Adelaide from the Cathedral rooftop garden. Image: Cathedral Hotel via Instagram.

The Cathedral Hotel knows burgers. Image: Cathedral Hotel via Instagram.

Hotel Elliot – Port Elliot

Heading to Middleton for a surf? Or perhaps a beachside getaway is calling your name. Either way, this well-frequented local pub located in picturesque Port Elliot has everything you want, with a sensational beer garden to boot.

A  five-minute stroll from Horseshoe Bay and a short walk to whale spotting favourite Freeman Lookout, you can also catch the Cockle Train or Steam Ranger with the Port Elliot Railway Station situated just outside the hotel.

Here’s their menu, we recommend the Coopers Ale battered garfish fillets, served with the Elliot salad, chips and house aioli. Pair with a Coopers Pale Ale of course!

The Hotel Elliot beer garden is waiting for you! Image: Hotel Elliot via Instagram.

Fish and chips on the Fleurieu at Hotel Elliot. Image: Hotel Elliot via Instagram.

The Republic – Norwood

Built in 1880, the Republic Hotel has undergone extensive renovations with sleek results. This beer garden is perfect for a Saturday arvo with the girls after shopping your new summer look on The Parade.

Here’s their bar menu, we recommend the charcuterie board with cured meats, SA olives, cornichons and ciabatta, and pair with an Espresso Martini (or three).

The only thing better than an espresso martini is three espresso martinis. Image: Republic Norwood via Instagram.

Some of the local produce on offer at Republic Norwood. Image: Republic Hotel via Instagram.

Bridgewater Inn – Bridgewater

Only a 20-minute drive from Adelaide, the Bridgewater Inn is the perfect Adelaide Hills escape. Nestled among lush greenery, relax in the garden with unrivalled views of Cox’s Creek.

Here’s their menu, we recommend the Cox chicken breast schnitzel (500g) with one of their signature toppings such as parmigiana (napolitana sauce, cheese and ham),  Mexican (smashed avocado, bacon, jalapeno, sour cream),  Kilpatrick (bacon, Worcestershire sauce and cheese) or garlic prawns in a cream sauce. Match with a Rockford Alicante Bouchet rosé (Barossa Valley), you know it’s a good idea.

Just in case you didn’t know you were in the Adelaide Hills. Image: Bridgewater Inn via Facebook.

These mega schnitzels will make a return visitor out of you, that’s a promise. Image: Bridgewater Inn via Facebook.

The Edinburgh Hotel – Mitcham

Ask anyone in the foothills of Southern Adelaide if they know The Ed, and not only will they know it, they’re probably sitting in its garden as you speak.

The famed Ed garden (renowned colloquially as one of Adelaide’s best) is bordered by pergolas, vines and lush gardens. The fellas love it here (and so do the kids).

Here’s their menu, we recommend The Ed signature flatbreads with heirloom and semi-dried tomato salsa with buffalo mozzarella, basil and pine nut pesto and smoked salmon with capers, feta, avocado, rocket and fresh lemon. Pair with a refreshing local gin and tonic served with citrus.

A family friendly atmosphere that will have you settling in from day to night. Image: The Edinburgh Hotel website.

What’s more refreshing in summer than a gin and tonic? It’s ok, we’ll wait. Image: The Ed via Instagram.

The Feathers Hotel – Burnside 

They won Best Beer Garden in Australia in 2017. Enough said.

Here’s their Terrace menu, we recommend any of the sociable plates, especially where cheese is involved. Match with a Howard Vineyard “Clover” sparkling wine (Adelaide Hills) and welcome, you’ve arrived in paradise.

Weekend goals. Image: supplied.

You had us at sociable plates. Image: supplied.

Parkside Hotel – Parkside

It’s impossible not to salute the Parkside Hotel at how different it is from it’s former state. The recently renovated venue is turning heads as one of the main hangs for South Aussies this coming summer.

And not only is there current beer garden greatness, there is also future beer garden greatness to come! A family friendly outdoor area (separate from main beer garden) on its way with completion due in the next couple of days. There is also another outdoor area which is in the construction phase, due for opening in the coming months.

So make sure you check it out.

Here’s their menu, we recommend the prawn and heirloom tomato pizza with SA king prawns, chilli, rocket and basil paired with an Aperol Spritz.

Your summer hideaway in bustling Parkside. Image: supplied.

What’s a pizza between friends? Image: Parkside Hotel via Facebook.

Port Admiral Hotel – Port Adelaide

This Port Adelaide pub, with its nautical vibes and bustling atmosphere, is quickly gaining a reputation as a bucket list must-see.

Adelaide’s oldest building (established in 1849 on Black Diamond Corner), the Port Admiral is a tip-of-the-hat to SA history and it’s really, really cool.

Here’s their menu, we recommend the Port Admiral fried chicken wings (500g or 1kg) with buffalo, Thai, sweet and sour or barbecue dressing. Pair with an Applewood Distillery whiskey or a Port Local house brew – a collaboration between the Port Admiral and Pirate Life.

The Port Admiral Hotel, Adelaide’s oldest building. Image: Port Admiral Hotel website.

Warning: these wings are addictive. Image: Port Admiral Hotel via Instagram.

Header image features The Feathers Hotel.

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