Summer fun at Manhattan in Mornington - The Places to be this Christmas & New Years

Veni. Vedi. Amore.

Come. See. Love.  And sip rose petal-infused cocktails.


Manhattan in Mornington has released a new cocktail menu designed especially for summer – it’s light, bright and fun. Fall in love with the Summer Spritz (vodka, lime juice, alcoholic cider, berries and mint), the French Martini (vodka, Chambord and pineapple juice), the Cosmobello (gin, Cointreau, cranberry juice, lime juice, mint and dry ginger) and many more delectable creations.

Manhattan in Mornington is closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day but is taking bookings for New Year’s Eve, and what better way to count down to 2018 in style with family and friends while you sip a rose petal-infused Asperol or an Espresso Martini poured to perfection by Rose and the team.

New Year’s Eve bookings are essential … as are the good times you’re going to have at Manhattan in Mornington.



A: 2/55 Barkly St, Mornington

T: 5976 4867



Freshest seafood every day at Bay Sea Farms - Places to be this Christmas & New Year

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After celebrating its 10th year of growing mussels and oysters at Mount Martha, Bay Sea Farms is proud to announce the opening of its new factory outlet at 21 Bennetts Rd, Mornington.

Mussels and other seafood, including only the best Australian fish, prawns and oysters, will still be available from Mornington Pier on Sundays, but now you’ll also be able to buy the freshest, highest-quality seafood during the week and on Saturday mornings at 21 Bennetts Rd.

Bay Sea Farms Pty Ltd is a proud member of the Mornington Peninsula Produce brand (No.24) and encourages all Peninsula residents and visitors to check out its new factory outlet for the best local seafood.  Bait mussels are also available.

Community spirit and genuine hospitality

On September 14, Samantha and Andrew from The Long Table and Marlene Hoff from 100 Mile Foodie hosted an R U OK? fundraiser to raise awareness of and money for mental health and suicide prevention on the Mornington Peninsula.  Not in their wildest dreams could they have imagined the outpouring of support and community involvement that would result.

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So many Peninsula businesses donated produce, wine, beer and cider that was served to almost 100 people on the night, and friends, family and colleagues gave up their time to help run the event and ensure it was a huge success. An incredible number of silent auction items were donated by businesses, including artwork, horse rides, massages, wine, accommodation, jewellery and vouchers, raising more than $12,500.

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Both Marlene and Sam have been working with R U OK? and the Mornington Peninsula Shire to ensure the money stays on the Peninsula and that more and more people feel comfortable asking the question of those around them: “R U OK?”

Meanwhile, it’s back to business as The Long Table prepares for the busy festive season.  If you haven’t booked your Christmas function, get in quick to take advantage of menu packages from $49 per person, private dining rooms that can cater for 20-40 guests, the outdoor deck and courtyard games. 

And make sure you book for chef/owner Andrew Doughton’s Summer Harvest cooking demonstration on Friday, January 18.  It will be followed by lunch and a glass of Quea!y wine.

There’s always plenty happening at The Long Table.



A: 159 Shoreham Road, Red Hill South

T: 59892326


E: [email protected]

FB: thelongtablerestaurant

INSTA: @longtableredhill


New summer menu at The Hart of Tyabb By Andrea Kellett

The Hart of Tyabb is about to unleash its new summer menu. Need we give you a better reason to visit the Tyabb Packing House than this?

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The Hart of Tyabb, located inside the historic Tyabb Packing House Antiques complex, is the place to relax and rejuvenate over lunch and barista-made coffee after browsing the endless array of antiques on the showroom floor. The ever-popular beef burger and egg and bacon roll are on the new-season menu - and vegie-lovers, the cauliflower burger is back! There will be a new vegetarian tart, and here’s something to make your mouth water: sticky pork sandwich on house-made Turkish bread with chili caramel sauce on apple slaw.

Chef Dean Caldwell loves to get creative in the kitchen and this is a must this summer. As always, The Hart of Tyabb offers gluten-free and vegan options, delicious homemade cakes, table service and “the very best in coffee”. And for those who like to enjoy an alcoholic beverage with their meal, the establishment is fully licensed.

Pop in and see for yourself this summer.


Open Thursday-Sunday, 10am-5pm
A: 14 Mornington-Tyabb Rd, Tyabb (inside Tyabb Packing House Antiques)
T: 5977 3166


New pinot gris springs forth


Spring has sprung and so too has Dromana Estate’s 2017 Mornington Estate Pinot Gris. He’s been dragged kicking and screaming from his warm oak bed and plunged into glass, and now Dromana Estate is ready to send him off to your refrigerators and dining tables to be enjoyed with family and friends.

He’s oozing all the flavours of the orchard - apples, figs and pears - with a spicy finish. At a mere $25 from the cellar door, he should be on everyone's shopping list this spring. Visit the cellar door for a taste today, and also sample Dromana Estate’s Melbourne International Wine Show winners. The Mornington Estate Pinot Noir 2016 won gold, the Mornington Estate Shiraz 2015 collected silver and the Dromana Estate Chardonnay 2013 took home a bronze.  And if that isn't enough to shout about, Dromana Estate was awarded the Mornington Peninsula Winery of the Year … not too shabby a result.

The cellar door is bursting with spring specials, with current and back vintage deals on offer from Wednesday to Sunday, 11am to 5pm. Might as well stay for lunch too – there are pizzas and sharing platters aplenty from noon to 4pm.



A: 555 Old Moorooduc Rd, Tuerong

T: 5974 4400



The soul of Japan By Liz Rogers

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Master chef Hikaru Orita (of Orita’s 16 years of fame in Toorak) creates authentic, healthy and delicious Japanese dishes that feed the soul. His Orita’s 2 restaurant in Balnarring concentrates on delivering delicate Japanese food that keeps clients returning for more of his passion and dexterity. Flavour comes alive at Orita’s 2 and tells a story of Japanese culture and connectivity through daily fresh ingredients and sensory seduction.

Once you’ve sampled Orita-san’s gyoza (pan-fried Japanese dumpling), okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake) and agedashi tofu, your place will be firmly set as a regular at this traditional Japanese restaurant. These are dishes you can never have too much of, while Orita-san’s 50-plus years of experience means ordering the most sophisticated and intricate dish is possible too.

Orita’s 2 also welcomes birthday celebrations.



A: Shop 17/3050 Frankston-Flinders Rd, Balnarring (next to butcher)

T: 5931 3232


FB: @oritas2


A delicious slice of Italy

Nothing beats the Mornington Peninsula in springtime, especially if you're planning a visit to Fontalina - Balnarring's freshest taste of Italy. 


Owner and head chef Dirk Anceschi follows his passion for producing top-quality food using locally sourced ingredients from various suppliers on the Peninsula. Dirk has comprised a menu that is uniquely simple and gives the diner an uncomplicated and authentic taste of Italy. 

The pizzas are created to complement the integrity and flavour of each ingredient, using real Italian flour, tomatoes and mozzarella. Your pizza is then made by hand by Fontalina’s Italian pizzaiolo, Massimo. 

With beer, wine and a selected few cocktails on its list, Fontalina makes the perfect stop after the beach for a casual bite with friends and family. Try the antipasto platter while you decide on your mains.

Fontalina is open Wednesday through to Sunday from 5pm and from noon Friday through to Sunday.  You can also enjoy a casual coffee and pastry on the weekends from 9am. Caelen, who is the front of house manager, also doubles as a pro barista.

Fontalina offers all pizzas on its menu for $15 on Sundays but you must book a table in advance because it's only on offer to those who dine in and the word is out!

A: Shop 8, Tulum Village, 2-8 Russell St, Balnarring

T: 5983 1830


E: [email protected]




Nicole Hawley, Head Chef, The Ranelagh Club, 3 Rosserdale Cres, Mount Eliza

What’s the best thing about being Head Chef at The Ranelagh Club?

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The view! The Ranelagh Club is position-perfect. Every day I get to look out over the sea and on to the horizon. The next best thing about working here is that I can be very creative. It’s exciting to constantly develop new dishes and to explore different flavours. Getting to know the local produce is a great bonus too – there is so much to choose from!

Tell us a bit about your training.

I’ve been lucky in that I was brought up in a family who loved to cook, eat and get together with friends, so there was a lot of time spent in the kitchen. I have both German and English heritage so I was exposed to very different flavours. I did my apprenticeship in the Navy and did a three-year post on the HMAS Arunta, which was fantastic. There were up to 150 crew members at a time and we made everything from scratch. It was a great training ground. No time for mucking about - it was a crash course!

Do you have a favourite style of cooking and why?

My dishes are influenced by my travels and the people I have met along the way. I’ve always gravitated towards the home-style hearty dishes because that’s how I was brought up, and I love Italian and German flavours. I like to fill people up with tasty dishes that leave them warm and satisfied. I want them to feel like they are being looked after nutritionally and flavour-wise.

Tell us what we can expect to see on The Ranelagh Club spring/summer menu.

It’s going to be exciting because I get to change it whenever I want, which means our clients can enjoy a diverse and broad tasting. We’ve already had a Mexican night, which was very successful. The kids just love tacos and Dorito chicken. The Greek night was a hit too. I’m looking forward to broadening our dessert range by using local produce. I can’t wait to use the local berries! Then there’s banana spring rolls and chai latte crème brûlée. There will be more grazing dishes that can be enjoyed outside and lots of family friendly pizza and pasta. I’m looking forward to having an Asian flavour-inspired night soon.

How do you keep reinventing the menu and how long have you been in the industry?

I’ve been doing this for over 15 years and you learn a lot on the job by experimenting. It’s important to keep things new and fresh. There are so many different ingredients – why not explore and create? I’ll always keep the dishes that clients love on the menu. For example, the duck liver pate always goes down a treat. But we offer lunch, dinner, speciality nights and events plus we cater. With all these options, the dishes you can create are endless.

Sounds like a big job – what do you like to eat at the end of the day?

We do up to 100 meals a day. It is a big job but I thrive on it. Most chefs have that drive. My assistant chef Con is a great help. I usually stick with something simple at the end of the day, like scrambled eggs. I love eggs. But you see I’ve been tasting and testing throughout the day.

And in down time?

I enjoy the beach and catch up with friends. And of course, cook! There’s never no cooking!





FORK TALK: A CHAT WITH OUR FOOD, WINE & DINING EXPERTS Todd Pegrum - The Craft & Co Farm 170 Riverend Rd, Bangholme

Mornington Peninsula Magazine speaks to Todd Pegrum, who has been the chef at The Craft & Co Farm for just over a year now and credits his training at William Angliss under the careful eye of a great chef, teacher and friend Freddy Bosshard. 

Please describe your menu selections at The Craft & Co Farm. What trends are you loving at the moment? 
I tweaked the menu a little to consider the demographic of the area. I grew up five minutes away and have been in the area for 42 years. Let’s just say I know what they like to eat. As far as trends go, I don’t follow them at all. My food is honest and hearty; I’m old school and just go with the flow. If I see any more chips served in mini fryer baskets I think I’ll cry.

For those who aren’t familiar with your restaurant, give us some insight into what makes you different?
The Craft & Co Farm is unique in that it is the only working winery in the local area, while incorporating a lot of paddock-to-plate dining. We have just recently purchased chickens for their eggs and have our own vegetable, herb and botanical garden. You can dine among our wine tanks and barrels or in our outdoor courtyard. The kids can run around and play on our huge open grassed areas while you sample our wines, craft beer and spirits in our cellar door - good food, drinks, ambience and space. It’s also becoming more popular now for group functions and events, with one particular group recently requesting to dine among our vines, which is definitely something that sets us apart. Even our sister site in Collingwood brews beer, distills gin, roasts coffee and makes sausages, salami and cheeses which we incorporate into our menu. 


Please tell us a little about your professional background?
I’m not what you call a classically trained chef, but I had always cooked and even had my own catering company for a while.  Then I put myself through school to finally become a chef and haven’t looked back.

What is your style in the kitchen?
My style is rustic … very rustic.  We didn’t have much growing up but my mother showed me how to make a meal out of virtually anything. “Waste not, want not” was her saying. Big plates, big smiles and company to share it with.

What’s your favourite ingredient to cook with in the cooler months? 
I am definitely a carnivore and could see myself chasing woolly mammoths in a previous life, so any kind of meat is what I like to cook during winter. My favorite would be pork.

When not in the kitchen, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
With what little spare time I get I try and watch my local footy team, Chelsea Heights FNC. I have been supporting them for over 42 years and I have been cooking for the boys for well over 20. Other than that, my family takes pride of place. They are young and don’t get to see their dad as much as they should.

What do you love most about what you do?
I have always loved food, always. My mum was a brilliant cook; she could cook for 20 with nothing but a grill and two hot plates, so I have a lot to thank her for. I cook at home every night and every Thursday in footy and cricket season. It’s the satisfaction of sharing a meal with friends and family, and we don’t do enough of it as far as I’m concerned.  Life is short.

Any advice for aspiring chefs?
Be prepared to work hard, and I mean hard. Head down, bum up, and listen. Keep your mouth closed and your ears open. Learn everything you can off everyone you work with. And taste everything you can, even the stuff you hate. Also travel far and wide - it will not only expand your cooking, it will open your mind.

A touch of Irish

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Dromana delivers a touch of the Irish with the family owned and run Blackthorn Café. European trained chef Paul Ross has more than 30 years’ experience and loves creating dishes that speak of Northern Ireland’s heritage. He loves experimenting with Peninsula flavours too.  

Local lads Jonathon and Simon Hill offer their clients dishes they want to eat. Think all-day breakfast and home-style food made from scratch. The Blackthorn Café’s Ulster Fry (black pudding, hand-made soda bread, bacon and snags) is great for lazy weekend starts or for early morning weekday pick-me-ups, while home-made gnocchi and superfood salads keep you going strong from lunchtime on.

With just a few nods to their Irish heritage – such as their full Irish breakfast - these brothers are committed to offering Peninsula people really modern Australian café food. 

Open seven days a week from 7.30am until 4pm.  


A: Shop 4, Dromana Hub Shopping Centre, Dromana

T: 5987 2454  

FB: @theblackthorncafe 



By Adam Nicholls
Director, Wine Compass
T: 1300 339 463

This month we feature some fun wines that are a little different and don’t take themselves too seriously. These wines are all about drinking and enjoying now without worrying about things like ageing potential, high prices and all that serious stuff. Even in the depths of winter, we think it is important to have a little fun.

Crittenden Los Hermanos Saludo al Txakoli
Txakoli (pronounced ch-kol-ee) is the spritzy white that goes perfectly with Pinxtos (tapas from Basque country in northern Spain) and this wine did what we hoped it would - it took us back in time to San Sebastian. If you haven’t been and you love food, you should book a flight immediately. If you have been you would have seen Txakoli being poured in all the local bars. The Crittenden version has some nice acidity that gets the mouth watering for some delicious Spanish food. This is easy drinking even when it’s chilly - it’s always raining in San Seb anyway!

RRP: $26

Rare Hare White
Everybody is talking about the new Jackalope complex in Merricks North, a bold project mixing food, wine, art and accommodation. It’s located on the site of Willow Creek vineyards and still serving wines from that label, a label we have loved for years. The surprise, however, came with their latest release of Rare Hare branded wines which are made to be easy drinking styles that will match the food in the restaurant.  Our favourite was Rare Hare white with a rather unusual mix of Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc. It really worked and was a match made in heaven with their seafood and vegetable entrees.

RRP: $28

Quealy Secco Splendido Metodo Redmondo
This wine has been a real brain-bender for tour groups since they began pouring on the Quealy cellar door and always evokes a strong reaction. At first smell this wine could be mistaken for a sweet moscato but on the palate it is bone dry. It needs to be consumed within a year (good excuse to crack a bottle now) and is made with no sulphur so is great for people who get a headache from wine. If you are like us it’s hard to stop at one bottle - it’s that delicious and a great alternative to the average sparkling wines.  They also have a white version too - Metodo Ancestrale. This is really different and I recommend you try it.

RRP: $30



Winter in the vineyard

The wonderful folk at Dromana Estate have returned from their mid-winter battery recharge, warmed to the core and excited to share their new cafe menu. 

With sights as amazing as the vineyard in early frosty morning light and spiders braving the chilly early start, they have designed a menu to be enjoyed around their blazing fires. They are still offering their extensive range of gourmet pizzas and have added a few of their most loved “specials” into the mix. 

So, what's new? Think creamy gruyere and kirsch fondues, a succulent trio of steamed dumplings and soft tortillas topped with an array of fresh seafood and spiced salsas. Add a charcuterie board topped with a selection of soft and hard cheeses, cured meats, fruits, nuts and in-house made relishes, with surprising fiery little jalapeno chillies to boot, and you have the makings of a long leisurely lunch. 

Group bookings are a must from Wednesday through to Sunday, with the kitchen open from noon-4pm. Give Dromana Estate a buzz now to secure a table near the fire or on the cosy brazier-heated terrace.


A: 555 Old Moorooduc Rd, Tuerong
T: 5974 4400

Corner Café is calling By Liz Rogers

Looking for fantastic casual food, great atmosphere and a place to warm up over winter? Then look no further than The Corner Café in Rosebud, where cosy couches and pumping heaters have you sitting pretty over the cooler months. 

This funky eatery offers all the best wintertime wonders such as a rotating menu of hardy home-made soups (on the specials board), plus yummy rice pudding and a range of vegetarian selections like Mexican beans. The all-day breakfast menu starts you off from 7am and runs through the day, while a huge range of Blue Mini tea (think serendipity, jasmine, star anise and immunity, to name a few) will give you that warm and wonderful wintertime boost. 

The Corner Café is open seven days a week and delivers personal service with a smile. Tuck in today and stay for a leisurely drink – it’s fully licensed too.

Cheers to that!



A: 1455 Point Nepean Rd, Rosebud

T: 5982 1455

Tex Mex style at the GPO Hotel

Come in from the cold this winter at the GPO Hotel, where American-style barbecue gets locals and day-trippers alike smoking hot! 

The GPO Hotel is renowned for its tasty and tender Texas-style American barbecue and has been developing this delicious southern American technique over the past three years.  The style is trending heavily in town and the GPO Hotel is one of the only spots on the Peninsula to dive right in and embrace the concept completely.

American smoked barbecue creates a depth of flavour unlike anything you’ve tasted before.  Yoder smokers bought from Texas bring an exciting and mouth-watering edge to the already extensive menu at the GPO Hotel, and the 600g Cape Grim rib-eye smoked rare over Australian hardwoods and then chargrilled to perfection is an infamous speciality.  Other cuts perfected on the smokers at GPO include 12-hour pulled pork, beef brisket and beef ribs.     

Pub food with a modern Tex Mex twist is at the heart of this forward-thinking hotel.  Inside you’ll find a balance of modern gastro dining, classic pub meals and a robust hint of Tex Mex cuisine. 

Open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner and the kitchen is open all day from 8am. 



A: 1003 Point Nepean Rd, Rosebud

T: 5982 3200


Get down and foxy By Liz Rogers

Looking for a casual vibe and deliciously different food? Chef Levi Wanders delivers at Dr Fox Café x Bar, where casual dining comes together with cracking cocktails and laid-back end-of-the-week beers.

Levi puts his own spin on food trends and reinvents them as foxy first-class meals – for example, giving the pork belly burger a twist with kimchi (salted and fermented vegetables) and avocado. This talented chef has been in the trade since he was 15 and knows what flavours work. Plus, he loves to use locally sourced ingredients. Dr Fox’s rotating menu grows out of sensational seasonal produce so all the dishes are fresh and flavoursome too. Tuck into dinner on Mondays (hospitality night), Fridays and Saturdays until 9pm when cocktails like The Foxigroni, which is a twist on Negroni, the Coconut Fox (think Mojito) and the Figged Out Fox combination of white chocolate liquor and esprit de figues fig liquor and cognac come into their own.

Dr Fox Café x Bar is all about relaxation and flavoursome food sensations. Try the all-day breakfast and look out for the new September menu to get spring started.  Happy hours run on Friday and Saturdays too.

Now that’s foxy.



A: 37 Main Street, Mornington

T: 5973 4074



Peninsula Uncorked July

What better way to kick off a wine column about Peninsula wines than to feature wines from three of our most visited, boutique wineries? These are three of our favourite producers who also have some of the best cellar door experiences on the Peninsula.

Tucks Ridge Chardonnay
This is the Chardonnay for people who are a bit iffy on Chardonnay (or are ABC: Anything But Chardonnay). When taking out a busload of people, generally at least 20 per cent of the guests won’t like this variety of wine, it’s divisive to say the least. Chardonnay has the reputation of being overly oaked or overly buttery. This is the wine that has changed a lot of minds while still displaying some of the classic Chardonnay characters.
On tasting, this wine expresses a lot of the fruit characters missing in stereotypical Chardy, with apple being dominant on the palate. We love the little hint of butterscotch on the finish that really rounds it out. Enjoy this drop with a roast chicken dinner or scallops. Tucks Ridge Chardonnay costs $32 per bottle.

Quealy Rageous (Sangiovese, Shiraz, Pinot Noir blend)

They called her crazy, but Kathleen Quealy has never been one to play by the rules. This was one of the first red wines produced by the pioneer and Queen of Australian Pinot Gris. Today this unique blend is still a cult classic that sells out every year.
Rageous is a medium-bodied blend with Sangiovese as the dominant variety. When we tasted the new vintage recently, alongside the berry characters we loved the slightly sweet caramel notes, my wife’s exact words were “a delicious caramel bomb”. These became more prominent as the wine aired over the course of the bottle (yes, we drank the whole thing in one sitting, it was that good). Enjoy with lamb or a tomato-based pasta. Quealy Rageous costs $40 per bottle.
Merricks Creek 2016 Pinot Noir

A true family-run business, Peter Parker is obsessed with Pinot Noir. Normally leaving his Pinots in oak for 18 months to round out, this time he decided to bottle some of the vintage after 12 months. The result is a more fruit forward style of wine, which a lot of drinkers prefer to the earthier styles.
Depending on how you like your Pinot, this wine is bright, lively and approachable now, but could also be put down for a while to soften and get a little bit more earth to it (if that is what you are into). Enjoy with lightly spicy Asian cuisine or roasted vegetables. Merricks Creek Pinot Noir costs $50 per bottle.

By Adam Nicholls Director, Wine Compass
T: 1300 339 463