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Byron Shire
February 9, 2023

Mullumbimby’s Milk & Honey Wine Bar and Pizzeria

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For over 20 years, diners have gathered to the warm atmosphere of this lovely little wine bar and pizzeria to enjoy the pizzas, beverages, good company, and great vibes.

Located in the heart of Mullumbimby, al fresco tables make a relaxed connection with the current of the town, while inside there is a cosy, casual elegance. The well-stocked bar is attractive in gleaming brass and tiles; there are bentwood stools, tables, and a glowing wood-fired oven in one corner.

Milk & Honey is run by owners Angela Honeywell and husband Tom Scholley, who have been running restaurants in the area for almost 15 years now, with head chef Craig McFarland (who was also their head chef in the initial days when they had St Elmo in Byron). Honeywell says that as accommodation prices rose in Byron, the customer mix changed to be more visitors, but many of their previous Byron regulars are now Mullum regulars. ‘When we took it over we added the cocktail menu, the new bar and renovations around two years ago – we were trying to create a neighbourhood restaurant, where you can take your family or meet up with friends in a relaxed atmosphere with some nice extras,’ she says.

The bar serves aperitifs, cocktails, beer, non-alcoholic brews and beverages, and a favourable wine list. Their wine and drinks list is ever changing, featuring the best of Australia’s smallest, sustainable, and minimal-intervention wines. ‘We tend to just stock Australian wines and find some biodynamic and natural producers that have minimal intervention, to showcase the best of what Australia has to offer – more modern styles that complement the food. We try to offer the people the chance to try something new, and to have a conversation about the wines,’ says Angela.

The wood-fired element adds loads of flavour, which many say is the main thing that makes wood-fired pizza better than any other kind. There’s a range of delectable pizza toppings including a variety of cheeses such as the classics of mozzarella and parmesan plus taleggio, gorgonzola, fontina, ricotta, and even vegan cheese. Other toppings include fresh herbs, confit garlic, chilli, loads of local vegetable produce, and a range of cured meats such as salami, pork belly, prosciutto, pepperoni, pancetta, pork and fennel sausage, as well as nduja – a spicy Calabrian sausage.

Personally, my favourite pizza is the Mushroom, with the chef’s suggestion of additional gorgonzola. It’s not difficult to find a bottle of wine to go with that (they range in price from $48 to $78), and if we feel like making a night of it we’d start with a cocktail – for me something simple like the Barrel Aged Negroni. There’s something very satisfying about being able to sip a proper cocktail on a warm evening out in your home town, looking at the Steineresque tree at the entrance to Mullum.

If you’re adventurous, the chef can add truffle honey or Habanero Honey drizzled on your pizza. There are vegan, gluten-free options as well as kid-sized pizzas. They do take the pizza-making seriously: as the website says, ‘We believe in simplicity and transparency in flavours. In other words, letting each ingredient speak for itself. We use the highest quality, the freshest produce we can find, and embrace the artisan nature of wood-fired baking. As the fire is a dynamic entity, no two pizzas will taste exactly the same.’

Alongside the pizzas are some really great sides and other options: the Chilli Garlic Mussels are really good; the Lamb Ragu is another great dish; and the truffle parmesan fries are lip-smacking.

A recent addition to the pizzeria is their full catering setup with a portable wood-fired pizza oven, so you can have much of the Milk & Honey menu, and a catering crew, at your location.

Milk & Honey Wine Bar & Pizzeria is a place that has it all: a great atmosphere with a cosy interior restaurant as well as breezy, outdoor, covered dining. The service is friendly, the cocktails and wines are lovely, the fire is stoked, the food is admirable – do we already live in the Land of Milk and Honey?

milkandhoneymullumbimby.com.au

Milk & Honey: 59 Station St, Mullumbimby.


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