Part 2 of the guide to Bathurst is here! (Read Part 1 here).
This time we focus on places to eat, and no, not McDonalds, Red Rooster, Hungry Jacks, Subway and the Pizza franchises all located off the highway.
We're taking a look at the real restaurants that make Bathurst unique. We'll take into account price, taste, setting and location – everything important to a good meal.
What you'll discover about Bathurst is that many of the cafes and restaurants do not have websites or online advertisements, so this guide is just about as close as you'll get.
Now let's get into it:
The Hub on Keppel St Beginning with the best in Bathurst. If you want the full review of this, then click on this link, but right now I'll just give you a quick summary. The food is amazing. The breakfast menu is better than anything I've ever seen in Sydney and there'd be no better way to begin a big day on the mountain than a hearty breakfast of Trunkey Creek bacon, a sweet potato rosti, tomato puree and thick cut toast.
The dinners are amazing too.
With breakfast prices peaking at $22, and full dinners going for $35 at the highest, it won't break your bank. The only issue with The Hub may be getting a table. With the restaurant being packed out some mornings normally, grabbing a seat may be an issue when the population of Bathurst triples.
But still, The Hub is an experience you cannot miss, if you're on this side of the Blue Mountains.
Elies Café on William St
I'll begin by saying it's a good meal, at a good price, in a good location, in a nice restaurant.
It's what you'd expect in an upper market café. The price is what you'd expect, with meals ranging from $15-$35 dollars.
The menu is fantastic. There's nothing too fancy that will change the way you look at food forever, but the standard continental meals are done incredibly well.
The setting is nice. It is reminiscent of a Parisian café, with tables outside facing the road, and the inside is a lovely rustic setting with hardwood floors and high ceilings.
However, where Elie's falters is in its service. On your typical day in Bathurst, seats are hard to come by because of its central location along William St, and you'll spend a fair while waiting for your food. In race week, you'll struggle to get a table and lord knows how long you could be waiting for your food.
Duncan's Bar and Grill on William St (Inside Panthers)
This little gem is located inside Panthers, which you will see on the road up to the mountain on the right. You don't have to sign in to the club to get into the restaurant, and it's simply past reception.
Now, Duncan's is probably the best pub grub in Bathurst. The meals are absolutely delicious and come at a very competitive price. Each day of the week has a different special on: Monday being $10 schnitzel (different flavours of schnitzel), Tuesday featuring $10 rump and so on.
The menu features all your typical pub grub dishes: steak, calamari, chips and gravy, pie, schnitzel and so much more. Believe it or not, it also does an above average pizza!
Waiting times are a non-issue here – the longest I've ever waited for a meal is about 20 minutes, and that was when I turned up with a group of about ten people.
Overall, it's a pretty good little restaurant. Duncan's does exactly what it sets out to do and if you're looking for a pub feed, I wouldn't go past this.
Church Bar Woodfired Pizza on Ribbon Gang Ln, off William St Church Bar is by far the best pizza in Bathurst. It's not only the pizzas that make it amazing – the restaurant is built in an old church, thus the name.
The setting is chic, cool and candlelit, contributing to the individuality of the restaurant. Pizzas will set you back between $20-25 dollars each, but they are definitely worth the price.
There is no traditional ham and pineapple or meatlovers here; each pizza has a very distinct flavour unique to the restaurant – in fact each pizza is named after a street in the town.
Rarely will you wait longer than 15 minutes for a pizza. In fact, the restaurant trains itself for large crowds, with students packing out the place every Sunday for half price specials. Amazingly enough, the restaurant also has a range of niche beers on tap, including my personal favourite Fat Yak.
Church Bar's only downfall is in its lack of variety – if you don't like pizza, then you probably shouldn't head here. But, if pizza is your thing, I cannot recommend it enough.
Any Asian food in Bathurst
This review can also go for pretty much most oriental restaurants in Bathurst. If you're used to Sydney Thai and Asian restaurants, don't try and match it in Bathurst. The quality of these two would be like putting my old '98 Ford Falcon station wagon against Jamie Whincup's Commodore – they just wouldn't be in the same class.
Trust me, unless you have an absolute craving for some Pad Thai, don't do it.