A writer sharing travels, experiences, a love of festivals & events. Life is a journey and I hope to inspire others. Visit my blog at https://www.travelwithirenke.blogspot.com
Published October 18th 2020
Big cities have plenty to tempt one with cafes, restaurants and pubs, however, the country town of Young has these as well as wineries and orchards that provide additional options for eating and drinking out.
Here's a range of great places I found that are worth a visit:-
Wilders is a popular bakery-cum-cafe in the main street where you'll often see people queueing, a testament to the owners' love of baking delicious food. It's been a landmark since 1950, a longevity that many hospitality businesses don't have.
Open for breakfast, brunch and lunch, it is great for that quick takeaway or for eating in and catching up with friends as I did. From fresh loaves of bread to pastries and amazing pies (especially their award-winning cherry pie), quiches, slices and cakes, meringues, rolls and wraps, they deliver quality with fresh local produce used.
Breakfast items, such as bacon and eggs on Turkish bread, and light meals for lunch, like burgers and schnitzel with chips and salad, go down well too. Pair these with great coffee, milkshakes and a variety of other beverages and you'll see why this is a local favourite in Young.
The coffee beans are sourced through organic farms with a focus on ethical and sustainable business practices. The expertise of baristas is passed on to customers and future baristas in the onsite Coffee School where coffee classes and barista training take place.
Other offerings to enjoy here are hot chocolate, tea and iced coffee with treats like cookies, slices, cannoli and friands that change from one day to another. You can also purchase coffee pods, pots and other coffee products.
Apart from loving their coffee, the owners also celebrate music and regularly invite musicians and singers to their Espresso Sessions in the bar. The likes of Ella Hooper, Bill Chambers, Henry Wagons and Tim Rogers have performed and many return due to the good vibes and welcoming received.
On gig nights, all are welcome to get up and belt out a tune, whether you're a teacher, a farmer, a poet or an out-of-towner. Enjoy the fun with a cold beer or some local wine, a local graze table and free bottled water.
I love the name of this cafe and the fact that you are surrounded by plants in the Golden Glance Nursery makes it even more special.
Drop in for a cuppa with cake (the sticky date pudding and the oreo cheesecake look good), a Devonshire tea or a meal. Popular breakfast and lunch items are offered up, including bacon & egg options, homemade soup, seafood, schnitzel, steak sangas, lasagne and salads.
There's alfresco dining as well as indoor seating with an open fireplace to warm you on cold days.
Shop for pots and plants, whilst the children enjoy the play areas.
This local pizza place was my go-to for dinner. I didn't actually have pizza, instead, I tried their pasta. It was beef lasagne one night with cheesy garlic bread and on another night I went for the penne bolognese with a choc mint semifreddo for dessert. They were all amazing with plenty of flavour.
Great food made daily to authentic Italian recipes, their pizzas include Reef n Beef, Satay Beef & Bacon, Mango Chicken, Capri, Mexican, Smoked Salmon, Tropicana, Curly Joe and a whole lot more in both small and large sizes.
Other items on the savoury side include meatballs, bruschetta, potato wedges, chicken wing dings and pork ribs, whilst on the dessert side, I would go back for the tiramisu, the gooey chocolate mud cake and the filled donuts.
As the name suggests, we're talking Indian food here and the online reviews are saying it is the best Indian restaurant in the countryside. The chicken tikka, rogan josh and paneers all have positive comments.
Other items on the menu include samosas, fish cooked in coconut and spices, chilli prawns with capsicum, lamb skewers, vegetarian korma, cottage cheese & potato dumplings, chicken vindaloo, butter chicken, eggplant masala, Punjabi goat, a range of flavoured Naans, desserts and beverages.
So if spice is what you're after, then head to the main street of Young for this authentic Indian fare.
This is the sweetest place in Young. I can testify that the fudge is some of the best I've had, with the watermelon, Malteser and Mars Bar fudges being standouts. Suffice to say, they didn't last long in my house.
Other items that went down well were handmade Belgian artisan chocolates with names like Taste Egypt and Passion Heart, consumed with not a chance of making it home. So smooth and delicious, they were heaven in a bite.
Bags of lollies, peanut brittle and chocolates were a rainbow of colour along one wall, whilst giant freckles in different shapes, huge lollipops and lolly pizza graced tables.
Other walls of jams, sauces and toppings in various flavours greeted the eye, with my take home of the cherry topping sauce being a wonderful choice. It is delicious on ice cream, pancakes and good in milkshakes.
Cherry pies and fresh cherries are available too (when in season), as well as dried cherries, cherry juice and cherry chutney. After all, Young is the cherry capital of Australia.
But wait, there's more with shelves of T2 teas, giftware, home decor products, eyewear, cute colourful socks and a range of clothing out back. Much more than the name suggests, Poppa's are adding new products all the time. I'm seeing on their Facebook page that they now have bottles of Cashmere cocktail mixes, South West honey, Sachi bags, artwork and Christmas stock.
Since 1995, this interesting place has been crafting fine whiskies and spirits from local fruits. There's a Black Widow Honey Bourbon, a Young Drop Cherry Liqueur and a Country Dry Gin heavy on juniper berries.
Other products include Red Kelpie rum, Chiapas tequila, James Bentley whisky, and wines, all bottled onsite. Product tasting in cellar doors and a cafe are part of this award-winning distillery that pays homage to the hard worker.
In the old factory part of the site (that was formerly JD's Jam Factory on the hill), you'll now find a space that showcases a variety of local creative talent, whilst outside a play area will keep children busy.
Not far south of Young, you'll find the lovely rural village of Wombat and the nearby cherry orchard at Wombat Heights. Visit the farm and experience the making of cherry jam and life on the orchard, growing fruit. Talks and guided tours are available all year round.
Whilst there you can pick your own fruit, from cherries to strawberries, sugar plums and peaches, figs and persimmons, when in season. Buckets are provided and customers pay per kilo for what they take out.
You can also picnic in the morning or afternoon in the beautiful gardens. The Grog Shed at Wombat Cellars nearby has seasonal refreshments, pickles, homemade chutneys, jams and preserves. It is here you can shop for the orchard's cherry wine, as well as limoncello, walnut rum, sugar plum wine and the famous Wombat Widdle (a chardonnay). None of their liqueurs and wines have artificial preservatives or additives and will keep for years.
Last but not least, Ballinaclash is a pick-your-own orchard, farmgate shop, award-winning vineyard and cellar door owned and run by Peter & Cath Mullany, and their six children.
Cherries, apricots and plums can be picked at this orchard, with the farmgate shop selling many treats, gifts and delicacies. There's many boutique-style products made exclusively from their fruit, including jams, sauces, pies, cherry cordial and cherry ice cream.
With a commercial kitchen, Cath provides an opportunity for you to learn how to make your own delicious cherry pie in a 90-minute lesson. Running during cherry season, it costs $66 per person and includes morning and afternoon tea, wine tasting and all the ingredients for your family-sized pie, which you take home.
The vineyard produces red and white wines, as well as sparkling and dessert wines. In 2017, they won 7 trophies in 8 days, with the star wine being their 2016 Ballinaclash Edward Shiraz. You can taste all of their wines in the cellar and purchase them in the farmgate shop or online.