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Grampians Gastronomy: Exploring Local Eateries

21 Sep 2023

When travelling the Grampians Way, make plans to visit the local cafes and restaurants. You'll not only savour the culinary talents of our local chefs and enjoy a break from cooking, but you'll also be making a meaningful contribution to the region's community and economy.

Here are some culinary gems from across the region that you might not have tried yet.

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Northern Grampians

Spirit of Punjab, Halls Gap

Nestled amidst the breathtaking beauty of the Grampians (Gariwerd) National Park, you'll find a beloved culinary institution, Spirit of Punjab. Spirit of Punjab doesn't just serve award-winning Indian cuisine; it offers a unique dining experience. Outside, you'll find extraordinary sculptures from owner Gary Singh's Punjab homeland, while inside, modern robot waiters help serve mouthwatering food for a truly novel experience.

Kookaburra Hotel, Halls Gap

The Kookaburra Hotel offers pub-style dining in a lounge and bar, right in the heart of Halls Gap. Enjoy hearty dishes such as steak, barramundi, parmigiana, pie of the day, and much more. With a beer garden and bar, eight beers and ciders on tap, wines, takeaway liquor sales and a relaxed ambience, there's no better way to end a day than an evening at the Kookaburra Hotel.

Adventure Bar Cafe, Halls Gap

If you're seeking a different culinary adventure, a round at Halls Gap's Grampians Adventure Golf followed by a hearty meal at their Adventure Bar Cafe, will provide a dose of fun like no other. The course involves 18 challenging holes set on two acres, and the scenery will make you feel like you're playing golf in a botanical garden. The Adventure Bar Café offers an alfresco seated area shaded with spectacular tree canopies, or you can relax on the patio overlooking the golf course.

The Shire Cafe, St Arnaud

The Shire Cafe in St Arnaud is open daily for breakfast and lunch, serving wholesome meals that always satisfy both local residents and visitors. Whether you're heading to Horsham from Bendigo or on your way further north, the cafe also provides wallet-friendly specials for the thriftier traveller. Take the opportunity to explore the Queen Mary Botanic Gardens

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Western Grampians

Capital Inn, Horsham

The Capital Bistro is an à la carte restaurant located at the Comfort Inn Capital in Horsham, suited for families with older children. The menu is designed to tantalise your tastebuds with a range of modern and classic cuisine. The hotel itself offers guests a quiet stay close to Horsham's town centre. Prior to dining, we recommend taking a short walk to the Horsham Botanic Gardens or making the most of the aquatic centre across the road.

Pomonal Estate

Eastern Grampians

Ararat Hotel, Ararat

Located in the bustling township of Ararat, Ararat Hotel is housed in a recently renovated vintage art deco building. Their traditional menu features a strong Italian influence and plenty for the kids to enjoy, including classic Bolognese and mini chicken parmigiana. All meals are prepared with locally sourced, fresh ingredients and served in a relaxed atmosphere.

Pomonal Estate, Pomonal

Established in 2017, Pomonal Estate has fast become a must-do culinary experience in the Grampians. Situated just 10 minutes from Halls Gap, this establishment combines wine, beer, cider and restaurant. It offers a family-friendly atmosphere, largely thanks to the warm and welcoming owners, Pep and Adam. Conveniently located near Lake Fyans and the Halls Gap Zoo, it has become a popular spot for locals and tourists, so be sure to book ahead.

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Southern Grampians

Rox Cafe, Hamilton

Rox Cafe, housed in the historic Roxburgh House in Hamilton, offers a cosy atmosphere with an open fire, Rox Coffee, and a menu featuring delicious, locally sourced, house-made dishes. This charming cafe, set in an Italianate-style architectural gem built in 1874-5, retains its significance in the town's streetscape despite some alterations. It also boasts an excellent selection of coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and local wines, making it a delightful destination for foodies.

Royal Mail Hotel, Dunkeld

The Royal Mail Hotel offers stunning views of the Grampians (Gariwerd) National Park with an interior that complements the natural beauty. Dine at their acclaimed restaurant Wickens or the relaxed Parker Street Project, explore their kitchen garden supplying 80% of their menu or enjoy a wine tasting from their award-winning list. This culinary experience is a must-try bucket list item.

Izzy's Cafe, Dunkeld

Izzy's Café is a warm and inviting cafe in the heart of Dunkeld. Their menu caters for many dietary requirements and offers a variety of options, including European-style pizzas, mouthwatering burgers, fresh Portland flake, pasta dishes and flavoursome salads. They also freshly brew Illy coffee and stock house-made goods and regional produce, including everyone's favourite Timboon ice cream.

Whether you're a nature lover seeking refuge after a hike or a food enthusiast craving a spice-fuelled gastronomic adventure, the Grampians is a must-visit destination promising to leave you well-satiated.