|The Wine was staring at the back of my head!|
My in-laws and Shawn have been talking about Wellers of Kangaroo Ground for what seems like years; always mentioning the lovely food and the gorgeous views. During their fun recollections they’d often look to me and say, “You’ve been there, right?” and I’d always reply “No, not yet.” Well, finally we put that right. 🙂
Precariously positioned on one of the sharpest turns in the area, Wellers sits right off the Eltham-Yarra Glen Road. But don’t think you’ll see it if you’re just out for a drive because it’s well hidden in a jungle of trees and shrubs. The historic building is known for wedding receptions and today was a testament to that. As we descended the steps down to the front door, it was apparent the main dining room was prepped for a grand event – and although I know we’re pretty special people – I was sure those decorations weren’t for us.
We meet Shawn’s parents in the secondary dining room where everyone was squeezed together with just enough space between tables for comfort. There was a large birthday party of about twenty planted on one end of the room and clusters of friends catching up for a bite to eat scattered throughout the rest. We were seated in a little alcove, underneath a cute lead-light window, next to the wine rack. I smirk to myself “I like this place already!”
Although completely packed with guests and a wedding party, the wait staff were amazingly attentive and friendly. I’ve seen places with far fewer patrons not handle everything as perfectly as the Weller’s staff did, so big thumbs up to them on coping with high pressure with such grace and good manners.
So, food food food. We ordered a Willowglen Chardonnay for the table (it didn’t have to come from far, as it was just behind me!) and happily chatted in our hidey-hole while we waited for our meals. Shawn’s mum got the Morrocan Vegetable Stack, which came with cous cous and a yogurt chutney. This was not the first time she’s had the dish; and it didn’t disappoint her this time either, so I dare say she’ll be ordering it the next time we go!
Shawn snagged the Chicken Parmigiana; a decent sized crumbed fillet with a piece of ham peaking out from underneath a Napoli sauce and melted cheese. Traditional sides of chips and salad to finish off the plate. Again, having this dish once before, Shawn was quite pleased with his choice and polished it off without a second thought.
|Mystery? Or Flathead Tails?|
I must be honest and say I can’t quite remember what my father in-law ordered, because it was from the 2-course specials board (main, desert and wine for $29 I think it was). But I did take a photo! If you can work it out, let me know what it is! ha ha! I’m thinking it was the Flathead Tails with thick cut chips, because the lemon wedge gives it away. But regardless of what it was (or wasn’t), he enjoyed it thoroughly!
The menu didn’t have many options for a vegetarian (other than what my mother-in-law ordered), so my meal was actually an entree of Pumpkin Risotto with vine tomatoes and pine nuts combined with a Side Salad to round it out. The risotto was nice, but I found myself seasoning it two or three (or maybe even four) times to inject some flavour in there. I know it’s better to under season than over season when preparing food for others, but it generally lacked the kind of “oomph” I so enjoy in my food. The side salad was an innocent bystander of ‘okayness’. Nothing major to note here other than to say, if you’re a vegetarian – order what my mother-in-law had! 😉
Because we were hungry bears, Shawn ended up ordering a baked Berry Cheesecake for desert which was lovely (I can say that because I stole a bite!) and I grabbed the Winter Crumble, which was really an Apple Crumble as I found no evidence of winter in there anywhere! Regardless of it was winter berries or just an apple crumble, my desert was also very yummy and the Two Bears licked their desert bowls clean.
Overall, I think Wellers of Kangaroo Ground was a pretty nice place to grab a bite to eat and catch up with friends. Nothing new or revolutionary happening in the kitchen, but you know…that’s not always necessary in order to have a wonderful time when you’re in good company 🙂
Oh and the by the way, the wedding party looked lovely as they waltzed through our dining room to theirs. Both the wedding attendees and the birthday party in our room seemed to have a marvelous time and the staff kept on top of everything. Clearly an experienced venue for events if you’re ever thinking about where to hold your next function 🙂
|Winter Crumble (I say it was Apple Crumble)|
Service: ★★★★★ ✔