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Grandma’s Little Bakery, at Collector, on the way from Sydney to Canberra a good place to stop for a bite to eat.  The cafe overlooks the Fedra Olive Grove.

Olive grove views

Grandma’s Little Bakery grows the olives for their own extra virgin olive oil, olives, and herb-infused olive oils.

Overlooking the Fedra Olive Grove

Everything at Grandma’s is fresh and full of flavour.  The pesto and the tomato mix and the dressing on the salad all pack a punch. This was a puff pastry (made by Grandma’s) with lamb inside.

Grandmas Little Bakery Collector

The shakshuka, eggs cooked in a tomato and capsicum base, again with lots of fresh herbs, accompanied by crusty fresh bread was a good way to start the day.

Grandmas Little Bakery Collector - Shakshuka

Grandmas Little Bakery Collector

Grandma’s makes their own dips, jams, relishes, sauces, meals to take home, pastries, cookies, cakes, etc.  I hear on cooking shows on TV criticism about something “not being made with love”.  That seems so silly most of the time, but in this case, it’s obvious that Grandma’s cares about quality produce, and how that food is presented.

Grandma’s now also has a cafe in Alexandria, which I’m looking forward to trying sometime.

On the Grandma’s web site they say “where everyone feels at home”.  Certainly felt that way to me.

Details

Here are the details about Grandma’s Little Bakery, Collector, at time of posting. Please check their web site for more current details.

Web site / Facebook http://www.grandmasbakery.com.au/
https://www.facebook.com/GrandmasLittleBakeryCollector
Address 5796 Federal Highway, Collector NSW 2581
Phone 02 4848 0240
Open Restaurant Hours
Every day, 7 days a week: 9 am to 4 pm.
Kitchen closes at 3 pm. Afternoon tea available from 3 pm to 4pm.
Some public holidays are subject to change.
Menu
Grandma's Little Bakery on Urbanspoon


Where’s your favourite road trip place to stop for a bite to eat?

Update: The Kitchen is now called Bendooley Bar & Grill. I have left the name “The Kitchen” in this article, because that’s what it was when I visited.

Berkelouw Book Barn in Berrima has long been a fun place to visit.  The primary reason has been to get lost in the huge collection of antiquarian, rare, secondhand and selected new books. And then there was a cafe, serving light cafe food.  That was OK, but nothing marvellous.  Well all of that has changed following extensive renovations of the property.

The Book Barn has been there since about 1812.  In 2009 the Berkelouw family planted vineyards next to the Book Barn.  Over the last year or so there has been renovations of the Book Barn, and the surrounding property, including the cottage at the entrance to the property.  The Book Barn still retains its charm and character, but has been modified to allow it to be better used as a wedding and event location.  The cafe has been extended and completely upgraded to serve food which is more like a brasserie.  In the process of these changes, the property is now called Bendooley Estate, and the cafe is The Kitchen.

The drive off the Old Hume Highway onto the property is via an avenue of poplars.  And then these poplars below continue past the Book Barn back close to the dam further on back.

Berkelouw Kitchen - book barn

At the front of the Book Barn are these lush plane trees, and really green grass.  Beautiful greens.

Berkolouw Kitchen - trees

Food at The Kitchen

Tables for The Kitchen are scattered around the front entrance to the Book Barn, and then throughout the Book Barn.  It used to be rough rustic, and it still has the charm of the woodwork, but is much more refined.

Berkelouw Kitchen - tables

The lunch menu (the dinner one is similar):

Berkelouw Kitchen - menu

Watching all of the dishes appear in a new cafe / restaurant is always fun, as it was here, to get a feel for how the food all looked.  The wood-fired pizzas looked good, with fine pastry, and lots of good toppings.  All of the serves looked generous.

My choice was the duck confit with Toulouse sausage, white beans, cavalero nero and pickled grapes:

Berkelouw Kitchen - duck

It was everything I hoped it would be, with the rich duck and sausage flavours, the balance between textures in the beans and duck, and the sourness of the pickled grapes balancing against the rich flavours.  I’d have the dish all over again.

My friend ordered the chicken breast and maryland served with fennel and parmesan gratin and thyme jus:

Berkelouw Kitchen - chicken

It was good, but not as special as mine!

We got a bit carried away ordering potato side dishes, ordering both the steamed kipflers with sage butter and the hand cut chips with rosemary salt:

Berkelouw Kitchen - potatoes

Should have ordered one of the salads instead of one of the potato dishes!

The chips were crispy on the outside. Would certainly have those again.  They’re served with the burgers and the steak sandwich, both of which looked scrumptious, piled high on the plates.

My choice for dessert was “passionfruit and almond delicious”:

Berkelouw Kitchen - passionfruit

The dish was very much like a buttery friand texture and taste, with a hint of taste from the wood-fired oven, topped with passionfruit.  Accompanying that was an ice cream with fresh vanilla.  All truly delicious.

Berkelouw Kitchen - cafe

More from around the Book Barn

View from inside the Barn:

Berkelouw Kitchen - window view

Several old book-presses are dotted around the Book Barn, along with still plenty of old books:

Berkolouw Kitchen - views

The upper level which contained some book shelves previously has been removed, exposing the beautiful wood ceiling, opening up the space in the Barn.

Berkelouw Kitchen - inside

There are less bookshelves than previously, but still a good amount of interesting books.  Many of the bookshelves are on casters, to allow them to be rolled back and the space opened up for events.

A huge stone fireplace extends along one wall.  How wonderful would that be in winter!

Berkelouw Kitchen - fireplace

Along the back of the Barn a tasteful extension has been added, including some restrooms (the view from the women’s is expansive, looking across the fields), offices, and rooms for bridal parties.

I’ll certainly be back.  I used to go for the books, but now there is the added drawcard of good food to which to look forward (with good service).  The lush landscaping and the rustic feel of the Barn add to the warmth of the place.

Details

The Kitchen is now called Bendooley Bar & Grill.

Here are the details about The Bendooley Bar & Grill, correct at time of posting. Please check their web site for more current details.

Web site http://www.bendooleyestate.com.au/cafe-berrima
Address Bendooley Estate, 3020 Old Hume Highway, Berrima, NSW, 2577
Phone +612 4877 2235
Open Open 7 days from 10.00am
Lunch Monday – Friday 12:00pm to 2:30pm
Lunch Saturday & Sunday 11:30 to 3:00pm
Menu
The Kitchen, Bendooley Estate on Urbanspoon

This map is not accurate: Bendooley Estate is about 1km down the hill from here, north-east.

Have you revisited a place lately which turned out to be way better than it used to be? Where?