Nestled quietly up in the Perth Hills lies a quaint little cider house, Core Cider. Presenting itself as one of those fabulous little eating and drinking holes you would expect to find in the Swan Valley, it was a welcome change to instead head in the direction of Pickering Brook for a lazy weekend luncheon.
Perched amongst acres of orchards is a somewhat rustic tin building that serves as the main restaurant and bar for Core Cider. As we're now officially in winter, shoulder rugs ("not picnic rugs") are provided to help keep the chill off as all dining is outdoors here. I wondered if they might invest in some cafe blinds to help keep some heat in on the verandah yet be sure not to distract from the amazing views – what a shame it would be if the place couldn't be enjoyed year round. I got the feeling there were a few things and ideas 'under construction' so maybe that will be one of them..
First thing to do upon arrival? Sample the ciders of course!
The winner for me was Core Meltdown, my uber sweet taste buds must be starting to chill out a bit as I get older. So off to the bar it was, for one bladder bursting pint of Sparkling Apple Cider.
Now, I'm not going to profess to be any sort of food critic so I'll let you visit Core and decide for yourself. What I can show you is some of the delicacies our tabled ordered.
"The Core", a platter for 2, is a selection of the head chef's tasty treats of the day. Today's? Well, it was what I would best describe as a vegetarian's worst nightmare. Pork belly and medium rare beef fillets were the heroes, accompanied by different types of squash.
My dad got the Chicken Maryland, on a bed on cannellini puree with a side of toasted pine nuts, parmesan and beetroot salad. I must say, looked delish!
I love going for lunches at wineries and places like Core. It's so nice to walk around, breathing in the fresh air and soaking up the sunshine (or if we're going to be honest, sit around and rest our full bellies yet somehow still stuff them full of more wine or cider) before having to drive home to suburbia. There's something about being in a setting like this that makes me dream of a life in the country….