Yarra Glen Bed & Breakfast, Yarra Glen
There were numerous B&B options available in wine country, so the key for us was to find a well-priced place in a good location. I liked the idea of staying close to town, and at the Yarra Glen B&B we were able to easily walk the 8-10 minutes into town which meant less driving for me! Upon arrival, our host Mac was talkative and helpful, giving us a map and lots of advice on restaurants and wineries to visit (and skip!). Thankfully, a lot of his suggestions matched up those we received before we left.
Our room was one of three at the end of the long shared porch, each with a queen bed and in-suite bathroom. An in-room continental breakfast with three different breads, coffee, oj, cereals, yogurt, etc., was included, and given the nice morning weather, we enjoyed it out on our small table on the deck. Wifi was also included but the signal was pretty weak in our room.
Staying in Healsburg would have positioned us closer to more restaurants and shops, but I liked the sleepier feel of Yarra Glen.
our room and porch area
After our many hours of flying, renting a car and driving an hour from the airport on the wrong side of the road, I really wanted to relax. From our B&B we headed out on foot to a local brewery, Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company, where we started with the sampler to get a taste of their six main offerings. We liked the foreign-style stout the best followed by the abbey double, which was a bit sweet. Their menu looked good, so we decided to stay for dinner. Eric ordered the potato gnocchi with walnuts, wild mushrooms and goat cheese and had the first Australian sauvignon blanc of the trip. I choose the Angus beef skewers grilled with pepper and onions, smothered in salsa verde. I also tried the red imperial ale ‘phoenix’, the strongest beer they make at 9%, after the waitress kindly brought me a quick taster.
After a bit of driving and waterfall hiking the next day, we stopped into the Wattleseed Cafe for a late brunch. They were fairly busy and the waitress was nice enough to left us know that a large order had gone in before us, so it might be a bit of a wait for our food. We weren’t in a big hurry, so we spent the time looking through our notes and highlighting some wineries to hit later that day. Always a lover of breakfast, Eric got the eggs and pancakes while I opted for the eggs florentine and a coffee milkshake. The food was good, but not memorable. On the plus side, I also thought is was fairly reasonably priced for Australian standards.
Mr Fox bites!
Our last drink in the Yarra Valley was at the Grand Hotel pub for a half-pint each of 5 seeds cider, it is dryish and appley, reminiscent of our experience with Savannah Dry cider in South Africa. The British bartender was quick to chat about living expenses in Australia compared to the UK and the bar mascot was particularly amusing. We enjoyed our cider out on the patio near the playground and brand new taco shack, which was unfortunately closed at the time of our visit.