Winter weekend in Bright

My overall impression of Bright is lovely.  It was a great drive there, we left early afternoon and arrived in the evening.  Given the time of year, it was dark by the time we arrived and it was a bit daunting getting to the house on dark country roads.

The house we stayed at was aptly named “Evening Star” as the deck faced the mountainside and stars (which were aplenty).  The house was as gorgeous (as was described), with lots of space to relax, a bathtub with views of the mountains and a fully decked out kitchen (which we enjoyed cooking breakfast and dinner a few times).

One of the primary reason’s for visiting Bright was to dine at Simone’s (which at the time had 2 hats in the GFG, alas it now only has one).  It was charming and rustic, and the food was delicious.  Outstanding items include homemade gnocchi with mushrooms and truffle,  calamari lightly battered with rocket and the roast pork done 3 ways.

We stayed in Bright for a few days.  To amuse ourselves, we drove along the Great Alpine Road which is a great drive with very pretty scenery.  Another highlight of the trip was the Wandiligong Pub, with great locals and character (look out for a tree out the back with about 30 pairs of bra’s hanging from it!).  If you have a few hours, check out the Wandiligong maze – it was a quite a challenge and probably the best maze I’ve ever seen.

On the way back to Melbourne we stopped by a few spots.  One of which was Milawa, where there was a local Sunday market.  There was nothing terribly exciting at the market but the shops were interesting with cheese and mustard aplenty!  Another pit stop on the way home was Glenrowan where the giant Ned Kelly resides.   It was like a cowboy town with a row of shops (every single one with reference to Ned) running through it and a giant statue.

Overall, the trip was great and I can’t wait to return to that region!  Next time I’ll be hitting up Beechworth.

Total kms: 1000kms

(16th – 18th July 2010)
 

More info on Simones:

Simones on Urbanspoon

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Easter Weekend at Mt Macedon

First trip out of the city was to Mt Macedon, located 80kms out of Melbourne.  Tagged along to my boyfriends annual trip with his mates.   Drove straight there without stopping anywhere on the way, so I can’t comment on the coffee or toilet facilities of any of the towns nearby.

We were lucky to be staying at the fabulous  Sky House which was exactly as beautiful and idyllic as described in the website.  It’s up on Mt Macedon and has a beautiful view of the valley below and Hanging Rock.  The only tricky thing – finding the house up the mountain!  Google maps does not work for this place!

The weekend was leisurely and we spent a day or two exploring the nearby attractions (Hanging Rock) and towns (Woodend & Trentham).   Hanging Rock was as expected with nice grounds to explore, walking tracks, and a quaint cafe to have tea and cake.  I wasn’t terribly amused by Hanging Rock but none the less, it was nice to be there on a sunny day.

Woodend was like the Toorak of the northwest!  Saw luxury cars driving around (a Maserati and a Porsche).   The main street has nice little shops for trinkets and antiques, and a few cafes.  The big highlight of Woodend for me was the Holgate Brewery which had fantastic beer with a nice small town feel to it.

Trentham is a relatively small town, with a few shops and the delightful Cosmopolitan Hotel.   The pub burnt down (a year ago?) and since then, they’ve been having a makeshift pub out in the garden and stables.  The food is good, but it’s the atmosphere that makes it.  Sunshine, live band, good food – awesome!

We also stopped by Kyneton, but later discovered that we were not in the main street.  Instead we were where the locals hung out.  It was unspectacular, but we did stumble upon a few antique stores which were full of old furniture (if you like that kind of thing).

I’d love to go back to the house and Woodend, definitely would recommend it!

Total kms = 200kms (14,800 to go!)

(2nd – 5th April 2010)
 

More on the Cosmopolitan Hotel:

Cosmopolitan Hotel on Urbanspoon

More on Holgate Brewhouse:

Holgate Brewhouse on Urbanspoon

The Plan… (as at 1st April 2010)

The list of places that I’d wanted to visit were collated from my faithful Good Food Guide, Gourmet Traveler magazines and recommendations by friends and family.  I started the year with the following list of places that I’d wanted to see.

From the Good Food Guide 2010:

  • Simone’s (Bright)
  • Royal George Hotel (Kyneton)
  • Provenance (Beechworth)
  • Royal Mail Hotel (Dunkeld)
  • Merrijig Inn (Port Fairy)

From The Age “Victoria’s best boutique hotels“:

  • Royal Mail Hotel (Dunkeld)
  • The Empyre (Castlemaine)

Childhood interests and word of mouth:

  • Echuca
  • Wilson’s Prom
  • Eco-Luxe (Avoca)

Planning on one trip a month… watch those km’s go up!

Hello world!

Time to start blogging about my travels around Victoria whilst trying to clock up 15,000kms on my car!  Reason for the 15,000kms?  I need to get at least that to get a tax benefit for my car’s lease…

So, I’m going to go in chronological order from the 1st of April and try to remember some of the details of the previous trips…  And moving forward, will be blogging new trips!

I love good food and wine, and am addicted to luxury accommodation.  I’m lucky to be in a position to be able to enjoy those things and would like to start documenting it so I don’t forget them!

Melbourne to New York food extravaganza!