2 Y5 A3527

End of the Line: Hurstbridge

See & Do

2 May 2022

Nestled between the suburbs of Melbourne proper and the hills bordering the Yarra Valley, Hurstbridge is just 35km by car, an hour by Metro Train, yet feels like a little country town. It's a place where old weatherboard shops line the main street of Hurstbridge, while towering white gum trees line the course of nearby Diamond Creek. This historic hamlet is an accessible city escape offering unique retail, exceptional food and beverages and a chance to talk long walks in the bush but not spend all day getting there and back.

Eat With the Seasons Restaurant St Lawrence

In Hurstbridge's shopping strip is a rustic brick building housing Restaurant St Lawrence. Owners/chefs Daniel and Emily Greenwood met at Levantine Hill and moved to this characterful building with its slate floors and red gum bar in 2019. With just 25 seats in the bush-chic dining room, you will find an ever-changing menu focused heavily on the seasonal and local. Dinner could start with hand-cut poutine French fries, layered with fresh curd and slathered in a real, rich gravy, or perhaps delicately spiced hand-rolled dolmades with preserved lemon foam. There could be a juicy herbed lamb rump or a creamy risotto parsnip and burned butter. Book ahead.

Tiny Fine Dining Greasy Zoes

Forget the name. This beautiful and elegant tiny restaurant, just a few steps from the main drag, serves only eight guests at a sitting. The room is exquisitely hand-built and feels like a remote ski cabin. Chef Zoe Birch brings together a 12-course menu of hyper fresh and local ingredients brought to your table by her partner Lachlan Gardner. There is a zen-like beauty to the service and the couple recommends booking accommodation after the evening service to really enjoy the matching wines.

Real Coffee - Black Vice

The aroma of coffee rolls down the street as the team at Black Vice roast another batch of green coffee beans. Order your choice of blend or single origin at the counter and enjoy it under the marquee looking out over the streetscape. It's busy, fun, lively, and a good place to meet some of the Hursty crew.

Beautiful Objects and Fashion - Oku Den

Japanese pottery is as beautiful as its tiniest imperfection and Oku Den carries beautiful glazed Japanese porcelain and earthenware for gifts, kitchen or the table. Other fine objects and giftware they carry includes a range of timeless, simple, practical, beautiful clothing made in Melbourne from natural fibres, sourced and imported exclusively from Japan.

Wine Bar – Nine One Wine

The hills surrounding Hurstbridge are dotted with small family-owned wineries such as Panton Hills, Yarrambat Estate, and Hills of Plenty. You can buy them at this independent bottle shop that also offers wine by the glass, six beers on tap, plus cheese and charcuterie plates.

Old Fashioned Bakery – Stoneground Bakehouse

It's back to the 1960s with smiley face biscuits and plump lamingtons sold from the original wood and glass case. Come here for old-fashioned bakery pies, soft white loaves, vanilla slices, and custard tarts.

Parks

Along the banks of Diamond Creek is almost a hundred hectares of reserve, some bush, some playing fields. This includes Fergusons Paddock, a popular destination for families with children. It's a place to let the kids run, spread out a blanket, and picnic under a towering gum tree.

Ride – Diamond Creek Trail

The last leg of the Diamond Creek Trail has finally opened, connecting Hurstbridge to the Main Yarra Trail at Eltham and Melbourne's trail network. The trail intersects with train stations and shopping strips offering the European style of riding or walking where you can jump on a train if you're tired or slip into a restaurant for lunch. It is a beautiful journey of 11km to Eltham and then a further 22km to Melbourne, riding beside the waters of Diamond Creek and the languid flow of the Yarra.


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