Sofala claims to be Australia’s oldest surviving gold town. There’s hasn’t been any gold mining here for more than 70 years, but the town still retains an authenticity that is missing from many gentrified ex-mining villages in Australia. Heritage buildings abound, (although some properties are in need of a spruce up), and are clustered along the few streets that make up the town. Although located in a purpose-built building, the Painted Horse Cafe’s rustic exterior and courtyard decorated with rusting implements and Ned Kelly cut out sits well within its surrounds. Most of the dining is outside but undercover, with groups well catered for. More intimate sized dining tables are located indoors. The tray of scones on the counter scream country fresh – and they are – fresh. There’s a hint of vanilla lurking in the fluffy freshness and a crispy exterior rounds out this perfect scone. The house made orange and apricot jam is a delight and the only problem, there’s not enough for four scone halves. However, there’s no issue with asking for a jam refill and am given a generous portion. Shame the fresh cream hasn’t had enough whipping. The jam is so good that I take home a jar. Open Thursday to Sunday.
Tea: A basic choice of loose-leaf teas served in a small teapot.
Overall: Although purpose-built, the heritage vibe fits well with the town.
Location: 27 Denison St, Sofala NSW 2795 Ph: 02 6337 7092 facebook.com
Reviewed July 2018