Over the years of living here in Tasmania, we have made many trips to Launceston. About halfway along the Bass Highway, at a place called Parramatta Creek, there is a fascinating building that has always intrigued us. The conservatory was built 40 years ago by a Devonport man who designed it to house his grand piano.
The mother-daughter team who run the café and providore approached the owner of the building and he eventually agreed to sell. In March 2015, The Tasmanian Food & Wine Conservatory opened. The interior is reminiscent of a bygone era,
the furnishings are comfortable and inviting.
The beautiful grand piano has pride of place.
The shelves are stocked with 100% Tasmanian goods from the best growers and producers across the state.
I took a stroll around the gardens before lunch, the late spring rewarded with some magnificent blooms.
Returning through the rear entrance,
lunch was served. The menu changes daily to make the most of fresh, local produce. Two of us chose Okonomiyaki; Japanese savoury pancake served with Scottsdale twice cooked sticky pork belly, crushed toasted peanuts, crispy fried shallots, bean shoots, fresh chilli and Thirlstane Gardens coriander.
It was a tough decision between the pork and the Braefield pulled lamb burger on a Pigeon Whole bakery brioche bun with smoky baba ganoush, baby spinach, crispy Brandsema balsamic eggplant and house pickled red onion served with sweet potato chips and tzatziki.
There are also vegetarian options, including a selection of delicious dips.
Of course, the local wines are superb. I don’t think we can travel to Launceston without stopping in for, at least, a coffee and cake.