Breakfast in the Swan Valley… is there anywhere worth visiting besides Taylors Art & Coffee House? Some of you might say “oh but there’s that place (I won’t mention it’s name again for fear of an angry mob with pitchforks knocking at my door baying for my blood)”. No – not that place with it’s $25 tinned bean breakfast. NOT EVER.
Well now we have another choice for a top quality brekky in the valley. Drum roll please….. Let me introduce to you Homestead Brewery at Mandoon Estate winery.
The Swan Valley has been waiting for an establishment like this. I love the old world charm of the valley but this ultra modern winery is offering something a little different. On its massive grounds is the boutique brewery that provides a more casual feel than the formal Mandoon Estate restaurant. Sit with a view of the vines or of the shiny German made Schulz brewing equipment. Afterwards head outside to the picnic benches to watch the kids play on the playground or stay for a beer (served after 10am). Hot tip from my beer loving dining buddy Gus from Gusface Grillah – their Black IPA is a winner.
The coffee here is by Typika. Yep… that super popular place in Claremont that has people lining up out the door all morning. When I tasted the coffee, I knew this was the start of something good. They weren’t just serving some mass produced “Italian” named coffee for the sake of having coffee for “those” people that insist on having one at a friggen winery. If you want coffee here, you are going to be treated to the real deal.
On the menu is milkshakes that cost $9. I had to find out what a $9 milkshake tasted like… I felt like John Travolta as Vincent Vega in that scene in Pulp Fiction – “I gotta know what a five dollar shake tastes like”, minus the heroin and cocaine of course. It came out full in the silver mixing cup and it was made with REAL vanilla bean. My opinion? “Goddamn, that’s a pretty f***ing good milkshake. I don’t know if it’s worth nine dollars but it’s pretty f***ing good”.
The menu is very well priced for the location and what they are serving… in fact it is well priced for PERTH. The most you’ll be out of pocket for is $19 for either eggs benedict, corned beef hash or fried duck egg with mushrooms and brioche. The kids are looked after as well; with a choice of fruit and yogurt for $5 or for $8 they can have pancakes or bacon and eggs.
I’ve been on a bit of a sweet binge with my breakfasts recently, which is unusual for me and frustrating for those who just want to hear about bacon. Why not have the best of both worlds with buttermilk pancakes served with maple syrup and bacon ($16)? Normally when you order this dish you get a stack of pancakes and a couple of strips of smoked piggy. This came as light fluffy pancake layered with crispy bacon, layered with pancake, layered with bacon – well you get the picture. I would have loved some more maple syrup with this dish – but sometimes I wonder, is it just me who loves their pancakes soaked in it?
For $17, my husband Andy couldn’t go past the baked eggs with chorizo. This wasn’t any sort of tinned crushed tomatoes jobby; this was made with sweet, sweet San Marzano tomatoes spiced with aromatic sumac and coriander. The real test in baked eggs is to keep the eggs runny in all that hot sauce and yep, the chef had nailed it. The sauce was quite soupy but this was only to be mopped up with char grilled bread served with the dish.
Gus, my BBQ fiend friend ordered the corned beef hash served with double fried eggs and HP Sauce ($19). This neatly served dish didn’t look like much when it came out but it really packed a belly filling punch. The fried double yolker was runny and the mild mannered corned beef made good friends with the HP sauce.
Thinking she was going with something a little light, Gus’s wife Sherryn’s dish of feta, avocado and slow roasted tomatoes on sour dough ($12) was anything but. She even ordered a side of bacon to pork it up. This whopping serve didn’t scrimp on anything, especially the good bit – the soft feta. Mint was mixed in with the avo, adding a fresh touch and the roasted tomatoes looked like those sweet San Marzano babies. Not even Andy could complain about those roasted tomatoes.
I know the Swan Valley isn’t always a place people think of for breakfast but if you’re planning a day out at the wineries, why not start at Homestead Brewery and line the stomach with a quality breakfast served with a smile? My bet is that you probably won’t leave in a hurry… why not stay for lunch too?10 Harris Road, Caversham
Breakfast served weekends only from 7.30am
Originally Published on WA Today Friday 22nd November 2014