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Episode 4: 28 February

This week the team travel into the countryside, through Melbourne’s CBD and down the east coast as they find you the most unique places to stay, retreat and eat. Brodie is in Sorrento visiting Country Road’s newest store and adjoining café Post 3943 as well as Siren Fine Jewellery and Nick Smith’s Panorama Garden Estate. Lauren finds a unique way of sleeping amongst the trees with Cosy Tents Glamping as well as the perfect country café called Larder in Daylesford. Shane goes ‘pie’ crazy, taste testing his way through a variety of pies at Dench Bakery, Café Alcaston and Pure Pie. Glen finds the ideal McCrae getaway with accommodation at the spacious Villa Kokomo, matching it perfectly with eateries McCrae Pavilion and Merchant and Maker. Rebecca eats her way through some of Melbourne’s most delicious new eating spots; Hawker Hall, The Flying Duck Hotel and Biggie Smalls K-Babs.

Country Road Sorrento, Siren Fine Jewellery, Panorama Garden Estate

One of the newest stores to open from the Country Road family is Country Road Sorrento. Housed in an historic Post Office building, the shop combines heritage, style and even coffee into the shopping experience. Adjoining the store is café POST 3943. Refuel with breakfast, lunch or sweet treats for a little hiatus from shopping.

Not far away, Siren Fine Jewellery boutique houses Australian and international designers with an emphasis on diamonds, as well as creating custom-made jewels for those who want their bling bespoke.

Get away from urban life and unwind amongst 55 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens and a wildlife reserve at Panorama Garden Estate in Boneo. Spot various animal species and take in the stunning vistas of Bass Strait and Port Phillip Bay.

Country Road Sorrento
10 Ocean Beach Road, Sorrento
Ph 03 5984 0674

Siren Fine Jewellery
29 Ocean Beach Road, Sorrento
Ph 03 5984 4330

Panorama Garden Estate
130 Hyslops Road, Boneo
Ph 1300 138 488

Glamping in Daylesford and Larder Daylesford

For those who don’t want to commit to a full camping experience, Cosy Tents in Daylesford combines the outdoors and luxury with their fully furnished glamping bell tents. Campers have all the frills of a hotel experience with modern bathrooms featuring lavish body products, hot showers, as well as an outdoor kitchen and even have the choice of breakfast boxes filled with fresh and delicious goodies.

For more Daylesford dining experiences, neighbouring sister café’s Larder and L1 both blend a little bit of heritage, recycling, art and of course delicious food into the mix. Try anything from Larder’s tasting plate to homemade sweets showing off local produce, and wash it down with an L1 specialty coffee.

Cosy Tents
6a Kanga Track Yandoit
Ph 0411 322 937

Larder and L1

57a Vincent Street, Daylesford
Ph 03 5348 4700

Best pie’s in Melbourne

These days, the humble meat pie is getting the royal treatment with organic ingredients replacing the lucky dip mystery meat marvels at the milk bar. At Dench Bakers in North Fitzroy there are specially baked breakfast pies available to take away or eat in at the welcoming bakery café. Choose from egg and bacon or mushroom and feta.

At the Paris end of Collins Street, city slickers can find Melbourne’s poshest pies at Café Alcaston. Tucked away and unassuming, this gem has been keeping office workers happy with homemade pies for over twenty years. Five different pies are made fresh on site every day, including leek, chicken and champagne pies, beef and red wine pies and a cracking shepherd’s pie. Each is served with salad and home-made chutney.

On the southern side of town in Port Melbourne, Pure Pie sticks to doing one thing well. All of their pies have artfully pleated, buttery pastry and irresistible fillings like beef, cheddar, Guinness and thyme; or chicken, white wine, mushroom and tarragon. You can pick up a freshly baked family sized pie or an individual pie in the Pure Pie store and in shops and at markets all around Melbourne.

Dench Bakers
109 Scotchmer Street, Fitzroy North
Ph 03 9403 5333

Café Alcaston
2 Collins Street, Melbourne
Ph 03 9650 9387

Pure Pie
383 Bay Street, Port Melbourne Ph 03 9041 5044

Merchant and Maker, Villa Kokomo and McCrae Pavilion

Only an hour’s drive from Melbourne, McCrae on the Mornington Peninsula will make you feel a world away. For a perfect start to any morning, Merchant and Maker located across from McCrae beach serves up specialty coffee, carefully crafted pastries, as well as a hearty breakfast and lunch.

If you want to make McCrae feel like home, then simply rent out one, such as Villa Kokomo. The spacious three-story tree-top style house is ideal for couples and families big or small and boasts beautiful views of Port Phillip Bay.

For true beach-side dining, The Pavilion McCrae Beach is spacious, stylish and versatile - fit for anyone eating out. Enjoy their coastal cuisine in their private dining room, in their café or out on their sun-filled deck.

Merchant and Maker
675 Nepean Road, McCrae
Ph 03 5986 3385

Villa Kokomo
Ph 1300 161 780

The Pavilion McCrae Beach
Ph 03 5981 1202

Hawker Hall, Flying Duck, Biggie Smalls Kbabs

Eating in an old horse stable may not seem at all appetising, but when it’s in a stylish and refurbished dining hall by the same owners of Chin Chin and Kong, it’s a must. Hawker Hall is the newest addition to the family that draws inspiration from markets in Singapore and Malaysia. Chow down on fragrant curries, fresh noodles and delicious soft buns.

For another dining location rich in history, The Flying Duck Hotel in Prahran has been around since the 1880’s however a new refurb has given it a fresh new look. Perfect for all types of dining; eat out in their glass house, in their lounge or front bar.

For a casual meal out with a twist, Shane Delia’s brand new eatery Biggie Smalls Kbabs in Collingwood offer a selection of kebabs bursting with flavour, choose from their fried shrimp and harissa to their maple glazed pulled pork.

Hawker Hall
98 Chapel Street, Windsor
Ph 03 8560 0900

The Flying Duck Hotel
67 Bendigo Street, Prahran
Ph 03 9510 8081

Biggie Smalls
86 Smith St, Collingwood
Ph 03 9417 3531

Postcards Diary

Port Fairy Folk Festival
For a music-filled weekend away this March, head to the seaside village of Port Fairy to help celebrate the 40th anniversary of its famous annual folk festival.

Where: Port Fairy Village
When: 11 - 14 March, 2016
More: portfairyfolkfestival.com

Shepparton Festival
Take the drive to the regional township of Shepparton as it hosts an impressive carnival line-up of workshops, live music, delicious food and more.

Where: Shepparton township/
When: 4 - 20 March, 2016
More: sheppartonfestival.org.au

Rosebud Kite Festival
The Rosebud Kite Festival takes flight next month with a full program of entertainment, stalls and special guests - it’s one not to be missed!

Where: Jetty Road - Rosebud Foreshore
When: Sunday 13 March, 2016
More: rosebudkitefestival.com.au