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Sunday 5 September 2021

Is this the best gourmet bargain in Australia?

Consider a meal of fresh-cooked local seafood and crispy hot chips served with tartare sauce, a slice of lemon and a choice of vinegars.

Choose between battered, crumbed or grilled fish.

Take a seat overlooking the east coast fishing fleet that call Triabunna home and pull out a BYO bottle of delicious, crisp, local cool-climate wine? No corkage charge. You are welcome.

The cost per head? $12. Yes, that's right, $12.

Welcome to the Triabunna Fish Van on the east coast of Tasmania, and around a 90-minute drive from Hobart. It's the perfect spot for a break for anyone travelling on the Great Eastern Drive from the Tasmanian capital to tourism destinations like Bicheno or Coles Bay.

OK. The setting is not flashy, or particularly comfortable. You order your fish (local flathead or blue grenadier perhaps, or maybe some Tassie scallops).

You are given a pager, which flashes when you order is ready to be taken to a choice of stools undercover, or the outdoor seating area or on the grass, across the road from where the Maria Island ferry departs.

You help yourself to vinegar or other condiments, sit down and enjoy. Simple.

What makes the Triabunna Fish Van special is the quality, freshness and choice of fish - and the swift, friendly service.

The Van's slogan is "fresh from our boat to you".

All the food is freshly cooked while you wait and the Van is open daily from 11am-6.30pm.

There can be quite a queue on warm sunny days - but its worth it. My flathead and chips box on Friday contained six sizeable fish fillets, and more chips than I could eat. Winner.

Pick up a bottle of riesling from Craigie Knowe; a Milton pinot gris; a chardonnay from Freycinet Vineyard or maybe a Melrose pinot noir from Spring Vale winery on the way and you have a proper feast for a pauper's price.

PS: The van also sells fresh fish and crayfish if you would like to take some home to cook yourself.

Visit for the menu or
 for other local tips.  


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