I am a hungry artist living and working in Sydney. I am completing a philosophy degree and enjoy life.
Published November 19th 2016
Fantasy of country life in Sydney
The best kept secret of Alexandra. The Grounds is a wonderful family friendly place to enjoy. Tucked away amongst the factory outlets and antique stores, it is located in the once purely industrial area of Alexandra.
The Grounds has no entry fee and is like a little leafy village, filled with places to eat, and things to do. The mood is relaxed and popular with families. It is very busy on weekends. The Grounds offers so much that you could easily spend hours wandering around enjoying all the sights and tasty delights that it has to offer.
There is a petting zoo for children featuring the resident pig – named Kevin Bacon and Margot Robbie the cute goat, a wonderful florist, shops, many cake and gourmet patisserie stalls, coffee outlets and a wide range of food options that range from seated restaurants to take away street fare, all set in a garden-like rustic and shady area. It is the sort of place that you can lose yourself in – in a good way.
The food can be categorised into casual street fare type dining, café style outlets and fine dining. Depending on your budget, there is an experience to suit everybody.
The wait to get into the restaurants on weekends can be excessive (over an hour) so be sure to book ahead. If you want a delightful degustation The Potting Shed features a set menu that includes starter, main, side and sweet. Featuring delights such as The Pumpkin Fatteh with Za'atar, honey, pine nuts, labne, sesame and flat bread and the famous The Shed Sundae with Triple chocolate brownie, toasted marshmallows, butterscotch and ginger biscuit.
The Café at The Grounds is a casual dining choice. It offers a range of healthy options like salads and wraps, as well as some naughty fresh pastries. Try their interesting soda flavours – a hit with kids and adults alike. They have Coconut Fizz and Pomegranate Pop. Do not be put off by the crowds, as the staff are fairly efficient and are used to the large crowds. You can get a decent coffee in less than 10 minutes.
If you haven't made a booking and prefer to venture out and explore the stalls head over to the many food outlets, which are all delightfully aesthetically pleasing, just like the shady fruit tree lined location. You will be spoilt for choice if you love pastries. You can grab a coffee from the Café and head over to the delightful cake and pastries stalls, and then enjoy eating it in a relaxed, shady courtyard.
The wonderful thing about The Grounds of Alexandra is that although it is crowded, the vibe from the crowd is relaxed and friendly - so much so that you could forget that you are in Sydney and actually start to believe that you are in a chilled out country town.
The only detraction from The Grounds is that it can be tough to find parking on the streets that are close by, so plan ahead and allow for plenty of time. Once you do find a park, the rest is just a country stroll away.