Young is the sort of place you pass through, maybe stopping for a pit stop at a bakery en route to elsewhere. Bigger than Ben Hur, bakery fans will love Wilders Bakery. The business has been baking since the 1950s and over the years has expanded to the vast cafe it is today. From the outside it reminds me of a modernised wild west pub with the second story verandah, but clearly it’s just my imagination as it’s definitely 2016 all the way through from the furnishings to the colour of the decor. Seating moves between cosy corners dotted with armchairs to outdoor seating on the verandah or by the entrance on the footpath. The building is cavernous and it feels as though the bakery counter and clusters of seating rattles around in the place. Orders are taken at the bakery counter and when they eventually find you (it’s a big place), are delivered to your table. Plain and date scones are available, and I stick with the traditional, which is better than average when it comes to bakery scones. The chilled whipped cream is slightly sweet and saves this DT, why spoil it with sachet jam? If you are a bakery person then Wilders Bakery is a must. The upstairs light shades are made from old flourmill sacks and are impressive.
Tea: The usual variety of Lipton tea bags served in a small pot.
Overall: A mother of a bakery that has been serving Young for generations.
207-209 Boorowa St, Young NSW 2594 Ph:
02 6382 1275 wilders.com.au
Reviewed in August, 2016
My visit to The Tea Collective starts with a squirt of scented water over the top of my head. Like a smoking ceremony, this Tea Project ritual is supposed to cleanse and help me relax. But I know it’s really about preparing my head for the mind-boggling choice of teas on the quirky tea menu. It’s a big ask to narrow down your choice to a single tea from a starting line of 70. With names like Irish Rum and Cream, Cream Tea Sauvignon and the cheeky Novocastrian Breakfast, it’s an unfair burden to put on a customer. There’s a tea for every taste; chai, green tea blends, oolong, white, herbal – it’s insane! Luckily the selective food choices are top-notch. The melt-in-your-mouth scone tastes dreamily creamy and fresh, and pairs well with the delicate flavours of the housemade rose water jam. The fresh cream is on the light side, but the sprinkle of rose petal tea leaves takes it up a rung on the presentation ladder and wins me over. After spending so much time hovering over the menu I try hard not to leave with a bag of tea, as 50 and 100 gram take home packs are available. NB: Since my visit, The Tea Project changed its name to The Tea Collective and moved to Cooks Hill. The details have been updated accordingly.
Tea: A sensational selection of award-winning (yes truly) house blended loose-leaf teas served in either a pot for one or two.
Overall: A tea world hipster vibe.
Location: Upstairs of The Autumn Rooms, 127 Darby St, Cooks Hill NSW 2300
Reviewed in September, 2016