I have passed by the town of Sassafras numerous times on the way up to Mount Dandenong. Many of my mates would know that Miss Marples Tearoom is a famous little cottage eatery in that town that serves wonderful scones and that everyone needs to visit that place at least once during their time in Melbourne.
I’ve heard heaps about Miss Marples Tearoom and have live in Melbourne for 8 years now.
I thought this weekend was finally a good and auspicious time to visit it since Jess didn’t have to work and we wanted to get away from the city for some fresh air.
Once we stepped into the restaurant, we were greeted with this old fashion, period looking place that was decorated with antique looking wooden shelves stacked with books and teapots. On the wall hung numerous photo frames with what I could only assumed be black and white photos of the character Miss Marples.
It almost felt like I’ve stepped into a time machine. In a good way.
Miss Marples was much smaller restaurant than I expected it to be. The tables and chairs could hardly contain my big frame. We arrived at 11am, just as the staff were opening its doors and within 10 minutes of us sitting down, the restaurant was filled to the brim with customers. Good thing we came early then. We took our seats next to the large display window and watched people walked past while I sipped on my lemon, lime and bitters and Jess had a go at the Taylors tea.
For some reason, I kept thinking that they sold pancakes but then I was proved otherwise. They were in fact more famous for their Devonshire teas and scones. I opted for their pimlico pastie and Jess went for the beef cottage pie instead.
My pimlico pastie came with a side salad and some weird sweet and sourish sauce. In all honesty, the pastie’s filling was pretty bland and the crust was too thick to be enjoyable. I did like the salad though with its french dressing and provided a nice refreshing contrast to the heavy pastry. I give it a 4 out of 10.
I know that’s a pretty harsh score but for a popular place and not-so-cheap prices, I’d expected more.
Jess’ beef cottage pie looked a lot more appetizing than my pastie. It didn’t come with a side salad but with the same sauce that I had instead. I’m not really sure how she was supposed to have a pie with that sauce though. Pour it over the pie? Use it as a dipping sauce? A salad would have been good because her pie looked extremely cheesy and not to mention heavy with all that minced beef and potato beneath the cheese.
When we were looking at the menus before we made our orders, Jess had already spotted that they had banana splits and I knew we had to have it. It was probably too much for one person so we order one serve to share between us. Our dessert arrived and even though it wasn’t top notch, it was good enough to satisfy me after a disappointing main. There was a generous serving of ice cream with chocolate and raspberry syrup, pistachio biscuits topped off with whipped cream. I wasn’t really a fan of the whip cream though but I can’t fault anything else about the dish. I give it a 7 out of 10.
And why am I giving scores to the food we’re having? I guess it’s just something that has rubbed off from watching too much My Kitchen Rules lately.
After our brunch, Jess and I decided to venture around the shops in Sassafras for a bit to work off what we had put into our bellies. We noticed that there were actually quite a few other cafes around and looked like they served better food at what I could only assume cheaper prices. We checked out the famous Geppettos Workshop and Jess tried her hand at being a ventriloquist and I think she’s better off being a photographer.
We also checked out the Soak Bathecary, a body, bath and perfume parlour with the most astonishing moisturizers and body butters. They all came in different delicious fruity flavours and even as a guy, I found it hard to resist trying the creams.
Almost every product carefully lined up on polished wooden shelves had a tester open and by the time I left my hands were moisturized, my wrists perfumed and my nose smelt out. It was fantastic. I knew I had to get Jess something from this store so we bought a Mint Tea flavoured moisturizer after much deliberation.
Our final stop in Sassafras was at this spiritual little incense burning store called the Oracle of Sassafras. They offer tarot card reading sessions and had a number of gothic looking angel like statues for sale. The store crept me out a little but we didn’t stay long and soon were on our way up Mount Dandenong to the Sky High Observatory.
It was Jess’ first time there and unfortunately, the weather was a little too hot today and with not a lot of shade around, we didn’t stay long but still took our fair share of photos though.
Australia has an obsession with big things and the giant chair up on Sky High has always been quite the attraction. It’s an unspoken rule that everyone who visits Sky High for the first time has to have their photo taken with Igor the Giant’s chair. Funny thing is I’ve been to Sky High quite a number of times and have never bumped into Igor before.
We tried taking some shots together as a couple and trust me it’s not easy holding a DSLR in one hand to take a selfie. It took years of training and self cam-whoring to be able to achieve this skill. We took quite a couple of shots but this was the only one that turned out well. Bummer.
And finally, a couple more shots out on the observatory deck before we head off on the long drive down the mountain and home for our afternoon naps.