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Photo: Tim Bean Photography

Where to eat on the South Coast this summer

Beatrice Smith

In Canberra the sun is shining, the breeze is mild and the streets are empty. 

So where is everyone? Invading the South Coast of course! As someone whose family has had a little shack on the coast for many years, here are some of my favourite places to travel for the best breakfast, fish and chips, gelato, coffee and dinner on the coast.

FROM NORTH TO SOUTH

Berry Sour Dough Café – Berry

Inside the century-old premises, you’ll find freshly baked European-style pastries, cakes and savoury treats, with Artisan sourdough breads baked in two big wood fired ovens. Serving breakfast and lunch, the heart of the café is reflected in the simplicity and warmth of the rustic barn-like premises.

23 Prince Alfred Street, Berry | 02 4464 1617 | Open 8am to 3pm Tuesday to Sunday | berrysourdoughcafe.com.au

The Berry Tea Shop – Berry

The Berry Tea Shop is dedicated to all things tea — teapots, cups, cozies, cards and, of course, loose-leaf tea. Browse the collection or sit and sip on a cup of their exquisite tea with a slice of cake or freshly baked scones with Cuttaway Creek jam and cream.

66 Albert Street, Berry | 02 4464 1218 | Open 10am to 5pm seven days | theberryteashop.com.au

CUPITT’S – MILTON

Cupitt’s Winery and Restaurant is a must do if you’re after a south coast foodie experience.

Their restaurant is perfect for date night or special occasions, with delicious three-course menus that pair modern Australian dining with their very own wine.

Picturesque and romantic, Cupitt’s is a great day out, road trip, or perhaps even a sneaky overnight break from the kids in their boutique accommodation…

58 Washburton Road, Ulladulla | Phone 02 4455 7888 for reservations | Cellar Door Wednesday to Sunday, 10am5pm or by appointment | Vineyard Kitchen: Wednesday to Sunday, 12pm–2.00pm (2.30pm on Sunday), Dinner: Friday – Saturday, 6pm–8.30pm | cupitt.com.au

PILGRIMS VEGETARIAN CAFE – MILTON

The entire HC office agrees that this is a must-do if you’re staying around Milton – or if even if you’re not!

Don’t be fooled by the name – Pilgrims’ version of vegetarian is not a salad-leaves-and-kale type of affair. All of their dishes are generous and absolutely delicious. Out favourites include their Pancakes With The Lot, Bliss Burger and Soft Tacos (yes, they have an entire Mexican section of their menu, get excited).

Shop 8/9, ‘The Settlement’, Princes Highway, Milton | Phone 02 4455 7100 | Open 9am-3pm seven days a week, and 6-9pm for dinner from Thursday-Saturday | www.pilgrimsmenu.com

ST ISADORE – MILTON

My colleague Emma Macdonald can’t sing the praises of St Isadore enough. This fine dining restaurant is another foodie experience that everyone loves and is, again, perfect for a romantic getaway dinner or a celebration of something special.

Their menu is intent on showcasing local produce and the products of their own kitchen garden. The result is some spectacular modern Australian that won’t disappoint.

89 Croobyar Street, Milton | Open from sunrise to sunset | 02 4455 7261 |  www.stisidore.com.au

EAST LYNNE STORE – 15 KM NORTH OF BATEMANS BAY ON THE PRINCES HIGHWAY

So worth the drive for their pies, wherever you’re staying on the coast. These pies are so legendary they were even voted #1 Pie on the Coast by Tim the Yowie Man for Traveller. Now that’s an endorsement.

The best part about this store is the no-frills approach – just order your piping hot pie, decide on your sauce (or whether you’d like fresh cream if you’re grabbing one of their cherry or apple pies, which are highly recommended by the author) and tuck in. No one is expecting you to eat with cutlery here.

East Lynne Store is attached to a petrol station so this would make a good fuel stop (of both kinds) if you’re travelling from north to south or even back to Canberra via the Kangaroo Valley from Batemans.

Lot 451 Princes Highway, East Lynne (10-15 minute drive North from Batemans Bay) | Call 02 4478 6050 for opening hours

OYSTER SHED – BATEMANS BAY

On the banks of the mighty Clyde River, The Oyster Shed is a “farm gate for fresh oysters sold direct to the public”. Prized for their taste, Clyde oysters are well known and this is one of the best places to sample them.

You can buy oysters to take home or enjoy them at the Shed. They also sell a range of condiments that have been hand picked for their complementary nature to the oysters.

Wray Street, Batemans Bay | 02 4472 6771 | Open 9am-5pm seven days a week | www.oystershed.com.au

SAM’S PIZZERIA ON THE WATERFRONT – BATEMANS BAY

Sam’s is hearty Italian at its best and one of my favourite places for date night on the South Coast. I like to order a bunch of entrees, pasta and pizzas to share with a bottle of wine (of course).

The service is always friendly too, even when they’re under the pump. The best seats in the house are out the back, facing the Marina. Book around sunset, sit back on their comfy benches and indulge.

St George Mall, 5/3 Orient St, Batemans Bay | Call 02 4472 6687 to make a reservationOpen from 5pm-8.30pm seven days a week and from 12-2pm on Fridays for lunch | samspizzeria.wixsite.com/samspizzeria

STINGRAYS OCEAN GRILL – BATEMANS BAY

One for the families, Stingrays doesn’t just serve a kids menu, they have an entire enclosed kids play area, complete with iPads!

Even if you don’t have little ones to entertain, you’ll love their enormous servings, air conditioning and friendly service. This is the perfect place to step up your seafood game in a casual environment, with Blue Swimmer Crab, Jalapeno Squid and Balmain Bugs on the menu. I once struggled to finish a Reef and Beef between two people there…if that doesn’t motivate you to try it, I don’t know what will.

4/1 Clyde Street, Batemans Bay | Call 02 4472 3669 for reservations and opening hours | www.facebook.com/pg/stingraysbb

THE RIVERMOUTH CAFE – TOMAKIN

A hipster home away from home, this surf-themed store and cafe does fantastic breakfast, lunch, coffee and snacks. Their cakes are homemade and delicious while their burgers and brekkies are value for money and filling.

If you’re looking for something breezy and easy, their smoothies and juices will hit the spot. If you’re stuck for a cute and unique gift, their selection of surf and beach-related books, knick knacks and accessories are perfect.

101 Sunpatch Parade, Tomakin | 02 4471 7272  | Open from 8am-3pm Monday-Friday and 8am-3.30 on weekends | therivermouthstore.com.au

THE GUNDARY GENERAL STORE – MORUYA

This little gem is tucked away in suburban Moruya, away from the hustle and bustle of main street. With a small but delicious breakfast menu and serving great coffee and T2 tea (which you can also buy there), it’s a quiet little corner in which to get away from it all. We recommend the homemade cakes and muffins too.

13 Campbell Street, Moruya | 02 4474 3275 | Open 7.30am-3pm Tuesday-Friday, 8am-2pm Saturday and 8am-1pm Sunday. Closed Monday. 

THE MOSSY CAFE (FORMERLY THE MUFFIN SHOP) – MOSSY POINT, BROULEE

A South Coast institution, The Mossy Cafe serves breakfast, lunch, coffee, smoothies and sweets (like their fantastic mega muffins) to an adoring public, which is a nice way of saying that lines can get pretty long around lunch.

Luckily, there’s plenty of shady seating and magazines for you to read while you wait for food. Also great for takeaways to bring down to the beach or lagoon!

31 Pacific St, Mossy Point | 02 4471 8599 | Open 7am-4pm seven days a week | www.themossy.com.au

BROULEE PIZZA AND TAKEAWAY – BROULEE

A classic post-surf and swim lunch, Broulee takeaway is pumping most days but their burgers are worth the wait.

 3/77-79 Coronation Drive, Broulee. Call 02 4471 6890 for opening hours.

The River – Moruya

Take the ambience of an exceptional environmentally sensitive building located on the southern bank of the peaceful Moruya River, with its northerly views to the mountains of the Deua National Park, add one talented and passionate young chef, Peter Compton, fresh regional produce and you have the ingredients for a quintessential Australian South Coast dining experience, the River Moruya.

16b Church Street, Moruya | 02 4474 5505 | Open for lunch Wednesday to Sunday from 12-2pm, dinner Wednesday to Saturday 6-8pm | therivermoruya.com.au

ROSE AND SPARROW CAFE AND TEA ROOMS – TILBA

Aside from this shop’s adorable interior featuring every single cup, saucer and teapot you could ever want to buy, from delicate china to chunky animals (really!), their outdoor deck is a Hamptons-esque escape and the perfect place to enjoy some of their delightful Devonshire tea. It comes with a very generous serving of homemade scones, jam and fresh cream and, of course, tea or coffee.

4 Bate Street, Central Tilba | Call 02 4473 7229 for opening hours

SALTWATER FISH AND CHIP TAKEAWAY – BERMAGUI

Delicious, salt of the earth fish and chips served fast and fresh.

Relax on the grass by the water as you wait for your order to be called and crack a ginger beer to accompany your meal. Their sauce serves are also very generous – which is sometimes all that matters to little ones!

59 Lamont St, Bermagui.

BERMAGUI GELATI CLINIC – BERMAGUI

A Bermy institution, the Gelati Clinic is named after it’s old premises a street away, which used to be the town’s veterinary clinic.

Their new waterfront location caters for their incredible year-round popularity with a big airy space perfect for lining up in while you contemplate whether you’ll go for the classic Chocolato or Vanille or whether you’d prefer to sample the Apple Pie Gelati or even Cumquat or Finger lime?

73-79 Lamont Street, Bermagui | 10am-6.30pm 7 days a week 

Feature image: Tim Bean Photography

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Beatrice Smith

Bea loves that her job as HerCanberra’s Editorial Coordinator involves eating, drinking and interviewing people - sometimes simultaneously. The master of HerCanberra’s publishing schedule, she’s usually found hunched over a huge calendar muttering to herself about content balance. Otherwise you’ll find her at the movies, ordering a cheese board or ordering a cheese board at the movies. More about the Author

  • Maddie

    I’d also throw in Berry Sourdough Bakery & Cafe if you’re heading up Nowra way. It’s excellent.

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