4 Foodie things to do south of Hobart… you won’t regret!
So often, we spend precious leisure time still rushing to, and from, our selected destinations… It requires a determined mindset and beagle type nose to meander, to potter, to take one’s time and explore. The road to the southern part of the island of Tasmania, out of Hobart, will reward your inspection, in ways you wouldn’t dream. Here is a select group for which I determinedly slowed down, and snooped about on my way home from Grandvewe Cheesery the other day.
- Heading back towards Hobart, the first stop I made was to the Oyster Cove Store just near Kettering. Replete with local organic and unique produce, this store has had the same owners for 25 years, born as a pear and apple shed, and slowly transformed into the thriving produce business it is today. Take your time, check out the peculiar local fruit (Banana passion fruit? Well I never!), and the dazzling array of jams, pickles, sauces and comestibles that is on display.
- Next? Meredith’s Produce which is the real deal – a side of the road barn that is stocked to the gunnels with everything you could wish for to fill your pantry. They proudly boast Tassie products, and if you can’t see what you need – ask. I am sure it’ll be there somewhere!
- And then, a real hidden gem that will reward a stopover, and one, given its RSL-looking bland façade, sneakily hides its delights. It’s the Channel Heritage Centre. Do allow some time in there, for this is one of the best displays of Tasmania’s history you will find anywhere. But first there is a small café with cabinets groaning with tasty delights at the front, but that’s only the beginning. From there, an Aladdin’s cave of rooms opens up to showcase carefully curated and displayed historical art, photos, implements, ships, cameras (!), and beautifully complete tableaus of room and furniture design down the decades. It’s honestly marvellous, and I can’t believe I never stopped off before, except that the building, like a sly wolf in disguise gives away nothing from its exterior.
- And last, and certainly not at all least, stop off if it’s not too late at the Hairy Giraffe Café. Run by a cheeky Englishman, Paul, and his Tassie wife, Pagan (yes that is her name), this café in an old church with magnificent beams, stained glass and alcoves with ladies knitting away the day is a treat. Antony is the chef, and I had the best, and I mean the best, vegan chocolate cake ever. (And I’m not a vegan. But Pagan dared me to try it, and of course, she was right). I have a yearning to go back and watch how that cake is made, so perhaps another time…
Have you got any side journeys you’ve discovered south of Hobart? Then share please – these small businesses deserve to thrive and make this island the rich tourist destination it is today….
Oyster Cove Store, Channel Highway, Oyster Cove (just north of Kettering)
Meredith’s Orchard, 1830 Channel Highway, Margate. Open 8am-6pm.
Channel Heritage Centre, 1755 Channel Highway, Margate.
The Hairy Giraffe Café, 3 Van Morey Road, Margate. Ph: 0472 513 888
And before you wonder why I drove past the beautiful Peppermint Bay café – that deserves its own piece, along with the cruise. Another day, my friends.