Last weekend, Thomas and I went to Berry to celebrate five years of smug coupledom.
We started the weekend with a divine dinner at the very trendy, fusion asian style Hungry Duck. Our table wasn't ready when we got there, so we got to sit in their beautiful vegetable garden (from which much of the food they serve is made) and drink genmaicha (my favourite of the green teas) and eat our delicious entrees: chili squid with Chang Mai relish and pork buns by lantern light. Flavour sensational! Seriously though, if you ever go to the Hungry Duck do make sure you ask if you can start with drinks in the garden. It's truly magical!
We stayed at the quaintly named and naughtily beyond our budget Sojourn at Far Valley (look at their website for more photos, I couldn't do it justice). Which isn't actually in Berry but a place 10 minutes away called 'Far Valley'. It's a beautiful, green cow farm surrounded by stunning eucalyptus forest. There are only two cabins so it feels very exclusive, and the interior is incredibly sleek, modern, and alarmingly clean.
I was awoken early by the cows, so spent some quality time with some quality magazines.
We spent a lot of time on the deck reading, drinking wine and eating cheese and fig paste. It was perfection, except the cheese tasted like petroleum. Tom declared 'I will not let our weekend be ruined by bad cheese!' and huffily drove back into town and insisted that the shop replace it. It was hillarious.
On the second night we picked up lovely fresh oysters and prawns from nearby Nowra and ate them in our stylish digs. Tom cooked a scrumptious asparagus dish (the trick is to cut the asparagus in half length ways so there is plenty of exposed surface to caramelize against the hot pan), which was the highlight of the whole meal. We drank some fancily-labeled beers and made a huge mess.
After dinner, a frog came to our veranda to visit! He was rather friendly/scared stiff and patiently posed for photos.
On Sunday we ate at the very famous, and rightly so, Berry Woodfired Bakery. Like Silo (for you Canberra peeps), but possibly even better. I ate three loaves of their bread over the weekend and in the days that followed. Tom took lots of posy photos of me with bed hair while we waited for our meals (mussel linguine which wasn't as good as mine, salad and kipfler potato wedges with a tasty homemade tomato relish. What is it with Berry people and their relishes?).
On the beautiful, windy drive home through fairy glens and semi-rainforest, we stopped at a few roadside honesty store thingies. I thought this one was particularly charming with its colourful flowers. We bought a gigantic lettuce which looked more like a conifer that had been sculpted into a cone shape.
We also stopped at a magnificent, gigantic antique shop in Berrima. These shoes were from 1910 and were teeny tiny! We're actually planning a trip back there soon. It's the kind of place you could get lost in and spend all day.