Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Great Southern Hotel, Berry

An icon on the main street of Berry, which is also part of the Princes Highway (a 900 plus km long highway joining Sydney to Melbourne) lies the Great Southern Hotel.

Both outside and in, the decor is wildly eclectic yet seems to harmonise and give it alot of character. Homage is paid alot to signs. The signpost has distances which vary from "Donut van 0.5 km" to "Melbourne 710 kms" to Grand Canyon 12,363 kms" ... Just in case you were lost. There are also a few boats mounted on the roof and a wall of hubcaps decorate the outside wall of the bottle shop (not in picture).

Inside, the main pub area has a chandelier made out of an old wagon wheel, a modern heater sits atop of an old fuel stove in the corner, a special bar seat is made out of an old saddle. There are lots of interesting things to look at.

A warning to all bears who dare enter ...
.. you might end up on the ceiling!

A trophy bucks head ... just nicely positioned over the video arcade game "Deer Hunter" to give you some incentive.

The main bistro area with polished log tables.

We decided on eating here on Sunday night after a day further south in the town of Huskisson. Ironically, Berry had a few more places open to eat in than a larger town on the way back. After checking out a few places and their menus, we decided on good ol' fashioned pub grub.

The menu was short but had lots of classics like beer battered fish and chips, caesar salad, steak, quiche and salad etc. We started with a plate of cajun spiced wedges to share ($8.80) as greasy potatoes were needed to settle our stomachs (will explain more in the next post).
Wedges are something I have grown to love since living in Australia. Similar in size to a US favourite, potato skins which I was more familiar with, they taste nothing like potato skins. They are fully peeled potatoes and cut into wedges, coated with a spicy coating and deep fried. Wonderful on their own especially when freshly cooked and crispy on the outside and mealy on the inside. However, some genius somewhere started dipping them first in sour cream and then in sweet chilli sauce! This craze has spread in the last 12 years and most bistros and take aways will serve them with these condiments either on top or on the side. Sometimes you do have to request and pay extra for them.

The combination of hot crispy, slightly salty wedges dipped in cool sour cream and then doused in the slightly sweet, sticky chilli sauce is a taste and textural sensation that is extremely addictive.

I had the chicken caesar salad ($13.50). No complaints here ... just the right amount of dressing, bacon, croutons and nice warm tender chicken.

Hubby ordered the quiche lorraine ($13) which came with a side of the nicest, crunchiest beer battered fries we have had in a long while. It makes me wonder how nice their beer battered fish would be. The quiche itself had a pastry which I found a bit greasy and heavy but my hubby said he had no problems with it. The filling was nice and cheesy and bacon-y.

Ahh ... Aussie pub grub. The fail-safe comfort food option especially on a cold winters night.

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At 4:11 PM, Blogger KirkK said...

I love that bear on the ceiling. Gefore you posted the text, I thought it was some kind of weird Marsupial....

At 12:24 AM, Blogger Rachel said...

LOL yes kirkk .. its a marsupial unique to oz called a drop bear ;) It lurks and catches tourists unawares and leaves only their toenails...

At 1:31 AM, Blogger mars said...

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