When I heard that my last assignment with Yarra Ranges Tourism would be the Healesville Hotel I found myself awaiting my visit with anticipation and excitement. I had heard through social media that the historic hotel had landed itself with a hat from the Good Food Guide recently and looked forward to experiencing the acclaimed menu. With my little side kick (munchkin #2) and trusty smartphone in hand I set off to complete my collaboration with visityarravalley.com.au
When it comes to frontage this Hotel is a humble contributor to the buzz of the Healesville main street. Hidden by a heritage elm it could be easy to miss and therefore an extraordinary food experience could simply fly by as you concentrate on the signals for the intersection ahead. Here is a free tip, do not let this gastronomical opportunity pass you by. Park the car and reserve your table – there is something for everyone at the Healesville Hotel – you won’t be disappointed.
The thing I love most about Healesville is the history. It is steeped in it. It makes my heart sing when I walk into a historic venue that have used this to their advantage. Built in the 1920’s the Healesville Hotel still has the best of the art deco period on display… high pressed tin ceiling, original fire places, timber floorboards and ornate window frames. You can almost feel the stories coming to life as you take a seat and peruse the award winning menu.
You can immediately see why the Good Food Guide bestowed a much coveted hat on the menu. There is choice for all and seasonal produce features heavily. With the installation of a wood-fire grill and rotisserie, meat eaters can celebrate with braised, flame grilled and slow cooked cuts served with charred, baked and smoked accompaniments. It is a carnivores dream. If you are a plant eater and delight in the fresh and clean, do not be dismayed. The daughter of Mr and Mrs Healesville Hotel is also part of your tribe and has ensured that the menu caters to her preferences also. You too can enjoy the amazingly tasty wood grilled Asparagus, almond cream and toasted seeds. It is every bit as delicious as it looks! In fact this is a dish that I would happily consume on a daily basis. My stomach is demanding it right now in fact!
Not only is there choice of menu there is also choice of venue! You can choose to be served in the more formal environment in the restaurant, or take the more casual approach at the public bar. If it’s more of a café experience you are after, then head next door to Healesville Harvest and grab lunch and a coffee to go. If all this talk about meat has got your creative juices flowing and you are planning your dinner menu, you have dined at the right place. Just down the road is K & B Kitchens and Butchers with all your meal prep needs. You can pick up hampers, gifts, meat, cheese and ready cooked meals to fill your kitchen. As with most venues I have had the privilege of visiting in the Yarra Valley – there is soooooo much more to Healesville Hotel than ‘meats’ the eye.