From Japanese inspired pancakes to mega burgers, croissants and sourdough, it's foodie heaven
BY TAYA CALDER-MASON
If you haven’t heard, Port Macquarie is making quite the name for itself. Located just under 3 hours north of Newcastle this quiet achieving town with award winning restaurants, isn’t so sleepy anymore.
On a recent visit to check out the fancy new premium cabins at Reflections Holiday Park Bonny Hills we rediscovered Port Mac's laid back lifestyle and picturesque beaches. We were also keen to get reacquainted with the local foodie scene, taking on
the task to find where the best spots are to eat around town, starting with;
URBAN GRAIN BAKERY
Where: Peachtree Walk Arcade, Hay Street
Urban Grain Bakery has been filling the hearts and stomachs of locals for the past three years. Famous for their croissants and sourdough, this delicious bakery should definitely be your first stop of the day. Everything is made in house daily using organic and sustainable flours. Although popular for breakfast, if you’re in the area for lunch be sure to drop by for some mouth-watering gourmet pies and sausage rolls.
Where: 124 Horton Street
If you’re in the mood for some Korean fried chicken and epic American burgers then look no further than Chow Haus. As stated on their website ‘Bring your Hungry, we’ll fix it’, Chow does not under deliver with its huge portion sized meals and punchy flavours. The husband and wife duo say their philosophy is simple, create epic flavours using traditional methods and different cuisines from around the world. If you’ve got an appetite (and a few friends) we’d definitely suggest checking out one of their feast platters.
LV’S ON CLARENCE
Where: 74 Clarence Street
Opposite the water at the end of Clarence street, LV’s has been a steady contender for the best breakfast and lunch in Port Macquarie since its opening in 2012. The pinnacle of paddock-to-plate service, LV’s is a family run cafe and farm. Many locals visit the establishment just to buy fresh eggs from the farm which is home to 500 free roaming hens (so you know their Eggs Benedict is going to be out of this world). The menu is fun, quirky and has a little bit of something for everyone. Whilst everything is a stand out, we can’t go past the Japanese inspired pancakes with matcha gelato, white chocolate ganache and charcoal tule.
THE STUNNED MULLET
Where: Opposite Town Beach, 24 William Street
Standing proudly opposite Town Beach this one hatted restaurant is the quintessential dining experience in Port Macquarie. Drawing in crowds since its inception in 2005, The Stunned Mullet is the precinct where amazing food meets incredible wines. While the food is a fine dining experience the restaurant hosts a relaxed, yet polished atmosphere. If you are a seafood lover, you cannot go past their signature toothfish main with a glass of matching wine and to finished off with the coconut sorbet with pineapple pearl, cardamon, lime gel and meringue.
Where: 6-14 Clarence Street
There's lots to love about this 60s inspired Italian retro bar but it’s perhaps the owner, Gino, that brings back his loyal customers time and time again. Bar Florian is designed to be enjoyed by groups of people with its refined menu that features antipasto platters with some of the world’s finest cured meats, cheeses and condiments and real-deal Italian influenced pizzas. Pair that combination with world class wines and sensational cocktails this bar is Port Macquarie’s hidden gem.
Where: 76 William Street
Bandwagon Cafe is a little piece of Byron Bay in Port Macquarie. Serving up speciality coffee and quality food for the past 2 years, this rustic cafe is beloved by all locals. The husband and wife team repurposed everything they could from the old home that now is the shell of their contemporary cafe. The iconic smashed avocado is extremely popular with customers whilst the banana buckwheat waffles (gluten free and vegan) ensure everyone will be happy with the menu.
In addition to this list there are quite a few other food worthy mentions you should consider on your visit, including: Salty Crew Kiosk, Chop and Chill
and Whalebone Restaurant.
A trip to Port Macquarie really can't be done in a day so be sure to make at least a weekend of it, and with Reflections Holiday Parks Bonny Hills just down the road you can easily relax, take in all the sights and tastes Port Mac has to offer.