Saturday saw the family waking up at 4am to catch our 6:30am flight to Sydney so that we could finally see Miss 14 who is away at this program run by her school. Yes, I know it’s silly to travel for just a day and fly back out, but we haven’t seen her for two weeks and she’s got another two to kill before she gets back to home sweet home. To say that we’ve missed her is definitely an understatement!
It took us about an hour and a half to drive down to scenic Bowral. Having never been to the Southern Highlands of NSW before, I did a very quick research on the places to visit and eat at. Well, actually I asked on my Facebook page, so thank you so much Charmaine for sharing Beth’s post!
After picking Miss 14 from her campus, we headed straight to Bong Bong Street (love that name by the way!) in search for some food.
This patisserie sits on the corner of Bong Bong and Wingecarribee Street, in the Grand Arcade. It was only 10:30am and there was already a queue on the inside. We ordered pies and quiches to begin with, not expecting to taste heaven in our mouths! I had the chicken and leek pie, while Mr. C and Master 10 had the traditional beef pie, Miss 14 the Shepard’s pie and Miss 12 the quiche. The pastry was so buttery and flaky – the perfect combination that just sort of melts in your mouth. They were pretty generous with their filling too, which made our drive there totally worth it (besides getting to see Miss 14 of course).
We then decided to have some coffee – which by the way was surprisingly good considering we’re Melbourne coffee snobs 😉 . And of course dessert. Everyone had a lemon meringue tart, while I chose to have their coffee tart. The coffee tart has a lovely chocolate short crust base, which was then filled with a coffee ganache and then topped with dark chocolate ganache. An orgasm for your mouth! The lemon meringue tart featured some fluffy meringue on top of lemon curd and a short crust base. The meringe was so fluffy that the kids found it tricky to “attack” it!
Once we were filled to the brim, it was time to check out the views up on Mount Gibraltar Reserve. Instead of walking up a trek, we decided to drive instead. Hey, I did wake up at 4am you know!
The view from the lookout was just spectacular! Simple pleasures I say. The kids got down to do their poses for some camera action (of course), while I sat on the bench to enjoy the view.
For more lovely views, I’d recommend going up to Fitzroy Falls, which is found in Morton National park. The walk is pretty easy and once you get up to the different lookouts, you get to see the amazing waterfalls. Be sure to rug up if you’re going up there in Winter though. It does get a bit windy and chilly on the way up.
I couldn’t remember the name of the cafe we had our (extremely) early dinner at but when I did some research, realised it was at Cafe Rocca, next to Gumnut Patisserie. It was only about 3pm, and because our timing was all out of whack due to an early rise, we were ready for dinner by that time. Plus, our flight was at 6:30pm, so we really had to eat something before dropping Miss 14 back to her campus.
The reviews for the place were pretty bad, especially when it came to their service, which was why I was terribly surprised how ours was rather decent. If I had read the reviews beforehand, I probably wouldn’t have bothered trying the place out, but I hadn’t and we were starving, so we decided to give the place a try.
We were greeted by friendly staff, who sat us in the atrium. Mr. C and Master 10 had their special – the wagyu beef burger, Misses 12 and 14, their toasted pide with smoked salmon, avocado and rocket salad, while I decided to go for their chili prawn pasta. The food was not too bad, actually I really loved my pasta and everyone else thought their food was good too. So I guess maybe we came on the right day and time? Or maybe those who were faced with negative service just had the bad luck of facing that? Who knows?
It was then time to send Miss 14 back to her campus. It wasn’t without tears and a near tantrum where she was begging us to let her come home. Good thing she’s only got two more weeks to kill before she heads home.
It was a quick but rather interesting trip, I’d say. The number of cafes made me want to come back just so I could try their food but maybe next time?
Have you been to Bowral before? Where did you go and what did you do?