Modern Australia Restaurant in Healesville, Australia: Healesville Hotel Restaurants, Wine, Travel, Opinions

Healesville Hotel
Restaurants and bars
Victoria country
Open: Open 7 days

Reviewed By

Sue Dyson and Roger McShane
Phone Number: +61 3 5962 4002
Address: 256 Maroondah Highway
Healesville, Victoria
Country: Australia
Food Style: Modern Australia

The very model of a new millennial hotel. In the front bar, the barman's language was still blue enough to shock your grandmother but, when he wasn't pouring beer or wine, he was busying grinding rock salt in a mortar and pestle! Very new century.
As was the fantastic bar menu, which offers great tapas as well as more substantial dishes. We were there for a lunch and tried sumac-encrusted roast pumpkin and currant pastries, which were three miniature calzone-like pastries served with an excellent yoghurt, lemon and mint sauce, house-cured gravlax served with toasted Fruition toasted sourdough, and pork rillettes also with toasted sourdough and plenty of rich sultana and cabernet conserve, the whole dish lightened up a little with a handful of terrifically fresh watercress. Our only criticism was that the rillettes were a little too dry - they needed a little more fat. More substantial meals included a delicious looking spinach filled rotolo and serious pieces of steak.
The wine list is truly memorable and, behind the bar, you'll even find a bottle of Jean Boyer sauvage pastis next to the more predicable Ricard. Jean Boyer is one of our benchmarks - we've had a 100% success rate such that any place that sells it also has a serious commitment to quality drinking. And, being a pub, there's also plenty of beer, including Coopers sparkling ale, which is cellared for some time at the hotel and a couple of Chimays.
Next door, but clearly still part of the complex is Healesville Harvest, a produce store and café, that had been open for less than a week. It was doing a roaring trade in sandwiches and coffee and also appears to be a great source of quality local fruit and vegetables. The buckets filled with big bunches of fresh herbs and the big bowl of lemons, each one still with some stalk and leaf, just made you want to start cooking. The one large table was packed with customers but there are plenty of outside tables available too.
On a recent return visit this place was still buzzing and still had a lovely selection of food items.
The third eating option is the light-filled main dining room which, based on a quick read of the menu, was reason enough to make a journey to Healesville for dinner or serious Sunday lunch. Hopefully we may do that some time.
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