This is arguably Maleny’s most photographed paddock – it’s also probably it’s most generous.

One Tree Hill, with its iconic single tree and magic views over the Glasshouse Mountains, is a favourite with wedding photographers. Before you go tearing up there though, this is private property and a working farm. I took the pic above from outside the fence on a weekday when the traffic was sparse.

The Woods family first came to this gorgeous spot in 1917 and have been generously sharing the view with others for the last 20 or so years – but you must request permission before entering the property.

Where is it…

Between 308 & 349 Mountain View Road, Maleny. If visiting Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve drive further down Mountain View Road southwards. You’ll see One Tree Hill on your left. Note: you can’t park on that side of the road.

The rules…

If you want to use the spot for photography, you need to make a booking ahead of time and make a small donation of $50. Every single cent goes to local community charities such as The Men’s Shed, the Maleny Historical Society, Busy Needles, Maleny Senior Citizens, the Naval Cadets and the Maleny Show Society.

Mrs Woods – 07 5494 2115 (One Tree Hill) – Mountain View Road, Maleny

 

Hear the serenity, check out the view. This is Witta.

Located just nine kilometres outside of Maleny on the Hinterland road to Kenilworth, Witta is well worth a stop.

Check out the General Store – which also happens to be the only store – and stay for a cuppa or a meal…the view is fab.

Better yet, time your visit for the Witta Farmer’s Market – or the Blackall Range Grower’s Market – held on the third Saturday of every month.  You can follow them on Facebook here.

Supporting small growers and producers from the greater Blackall Range area, you’ll find everything from hay mulch to candles and tea, amazing pastry, some of the best honey you’ll taste, veggie and herb seedlings, jams and preserves and … you get the idea.

There’s something about a coffee shop that’s just about the coffee. As if it’s popped up somewhere, thrown in a super-smart, sleek and totally gorgeous coffee machine, sourced the best beans and then gone, ‘man, we better get something for people to sit on?’ That’s The Birds and The Beans.

Located at the top of Buderim Village in the old Vandy’s Garage – dating back to 1918, it was the first garage in Buderim – this cafe is a retro lovers paradise. Nothing matches, the old garage has been left largely intact – you can even have your latte out by the old petrol bowsers. And your coffee even comes with souvenir teaspoons – I knew I shouldn’t have donated all those old spoons when we moved.

 

 

Speaking of seats, you can chill out on one of the old couches and read a mag or catch up with friends, or settle in at one of the tables and get some work happening.

And for eating? This place is all about the coffee. You can buy a couple of toast-your-own slices of raisin toast for $2 a serve. They also usually have some crumpets and bagels on offer – if you’re early enough. The toaster is in the corner. Other than that there’s usually a few different slices or some cookies to choose from, sometimes some pastries. But really, you’re here for the coffee – or the retro vibe – but mainly the coffee

Where: Vandy’s Garage, 114 Burnett Street, Buderim

When: 6.30am – 1pm

 

 

 

Acai Bowls at One Block Back

Back in August, I gave you ten ideas for breakfast on the coast…here are some more…in no particular order…

Winnie, Woombye

If pressed for a favourite, this would come out near the top. The black rice porridge with ginger syrup really should be tasted to be believed, and the avo smash is lifted with micro herbs, feta and radish. Just fabulous. I wrote about it here.

Winnie is named after the owner’s son, Winston. They also have Little Boat at Marcoola  – which is named after her other son, Otus, or Oatey Boatie. Too cute. Speaking of which…

Little Boat Espresso, Marcoola

I haven’t blogged this place yet – I’ll need to go back to get some better photos. Now, there’s a good excuse if ever there was one.

Little Boat is open from 6.30 – 2.30 every day at 3 Lorraine Ave, Marcoola. They also open on Friday nights – but for drinks only. You bring your own food from the Marcoola Markets…such a cool idea.

Jimmy’s Catering – Coffee – Eats, Warana

Breakfast slider

I told you about this place here. Sure there are no ocean views, but the coffee is great and the breakfast sliders are well worth the carpark vista.

These guys are all about local and seasonal food – and excellent coffee.

Guru Life, Rosemount

Another place without an ocean view, your outlook here is green and serene. Coffee is taken so seriously they have their own blend, and the food is…well, just look at it. And there’s plenty to choose from if you’re vegetarian.

You’ll find the post here.

Central Beach Club, Mooloolaba

The Havana starter – or baked eggs

I nearly wasn’t going to include this place on my list given that they only open for breakfast from Thursday – Sunday.  Even then they don’t open until 7am – relatively late on the Mooloolaba strip. That aside, I had to give them a spot even if it’s just for their baked eggs. They are really that good. Naturally, there are other things on the menu – other good and very yummy things – but I do love the baked eggs…and the view. On a sunny day watching the world stroll by and the surf across the road, there’s not many better places to be than on Mooloolaba’s Esplanade.

Update June 2018 – this cafe is now closed

Two Point Oh, Maroochydore

Somewhere else I haven’t blogged yet is this relatively new vegetarian cafe in the Kontiki Building in Maroochydore. Again, it’s because I want to go back and take more photos. Yes, really. Have you seen their Instagram page?

The only way I can describe the food is to say it’s innovative…or maybe progressive? Whatever word you use to describe it, it’s the type of vegetarian place that the non-vego can walk in and not notice that the bacon is missing.

The smoothie bowls have been lifted to a different dimension from the acai that you see on every street corner here on the coast, and the avo smash is turned upside down with smoked beetroot hummus, smashed peas, feta, rocket and avo.

Oh, and the decor is stunningly simple and beautiful.

Open for brunch Monday – Wednesday 7:30 – 4pm and Sunday 8 – 3pm and Dinner Thursday – Saturday 5pm-10pm

Chances

I’m here working so often you’d think I was their resident writer.

Again, I haven’t blogged it and I really need to. Anyways, Chances was the first of the major tenants in The Wharf redevelopment – I’ve told you about that when we talked about Rice Boi and Saltwater. Yes, it’s a bar and it’s open late and it has a fabulous vibe and food for that sort of thing, but for now, we’re talking about breakfast.

They have all the usuals, plenty of muffins, a DIY breakfast, a breakfast stack that defies gravity (that’s it in the pic below), and a smashed avo that I swear I must have every time I’m in. And you must try the savoury mince jaffles.

You’ll find Chances on Mooloolaba Wharf, opposite Sea-Life, Parkyn Parade, Mooloolaba. It’s open most days from 7am, but check out their Facebook page for more info.

jaffles

Mooloolaba Surf Club

Many of the surf clubs do a good value brekky, and they’re well worth seeking out – and not just because they usually have the best view on the beach. Our “local” Mooloolaba Surf Club does breakfast each morning from 7am and you’d be hard-pressed to find a better view.

Mooloolaba Esplanade

Ok, there are plenty of places up and down the Esplanade.

Acai Brothers do, well, I’ll let you guess… Then there’s Quarterdeck – open for the early birds. They don’t have an avo smash as such, but they do sourdough with a smash on the side which is, unusually for places doing avo on the side, a good sized serve.

Dejavu, another early opener, is in the middle of the main foodie part of the Esplanade opposite the beach. At $20, their avo smash is mortgage-bustingly expensive, but also humungous and, therefore, good value – especially if you’ve worked up an appetite with an early morning walk/run or a swim…or all of the above. Their breakfast wraps are also pretty yum.

I’m sure that I read somewhere that Gainsbourg has changed hands relatively recently and are in the process of changing their menu. I’m hoping this benny with smoked trout and quinoa fritters makes the cut.

Do you have a favourite brekky spot on the Coast? If so, let me know…I’ll add it to my list.

 

Ok, let’s get one thing straight before we go any further – you don’t come to Jimmy’s for the beachside location or the outlook – the view is pretty much of the carpark and Nicklin Way. You come for the coffee and the food – and don’t even notice the carpark or Nicklin Way.

Still with me?

Good.

Jimmy’s has become our go-to place for brekky after the markets every Saturday morning. We’re addicted to the brekky sliders – at $5 each they’re fabulous value. With bacon, a perfectly cooked fried egg, tomato jam, cheddar and kewpie mayo – is it just me or does everything taste better with kewpie mayo? – they’re also seriously yummy. More importantly, they’re the perfect size for brekky when you know that you’ve got the makings of a hunger busting grazing platter in the market bags in the car.

Breakfast slider

It’s not just sliders though. We’ve also tried the breakfast wrap (bacon, egg, pesto, spinach, hash brown, onion jam, bbq sauce $8), the breakfast burger (the breakfast slider made large $10) and the breakfast tacos. You get two, and each one has triple smoked bacon, house beans, fried egg, sriracha, shaved parmesan and guacamole. It’s a lot of eating for $12. My tip? Buy one serve of these, and two brekky sliders and share.

New to the menu is this yellow curry poached chicken omelette ($16). My photo was crap – way too many shades of beige – so I’ve borrowed this one from @foodonthecoast via Instagram. I could have had an entire bowl with some roti to dip in that curry sauce.

Of course, there’s the usual eggs – benny, your way, with whatever – and it wouldn’t be a Sunshine Coast breakfast joint without an acai or pitaya bowl or a smashed avo – Jimmy’s avo is served with dukkah and kimchi.

And that’s just breakfast…Jimmy’s also does brunch/lunch – and holds a four-course dinner event monthly based on a single ingredient. When we go, I’ll tell you all about it.

Where?

179 Nicklin Way, Warana

When?

Monday – Friday 6am – 2pm
Saturday 6am – 12 noon

Vegetarian/ Gluten free options?

Yes

Price? $

Below $20

More info?

You’ll find them in the usual social media places: Instagram, Facebook, website.

 

I haven’t done one of these for a while, but here we go, a week’s worth of morning pics…

 

Secrets on the Lake

The people who know about the weather are forecasting heat waves this weekend on the Sunshine Coast. For those of you who have had it up to here with Sydney’s summer temperatures and those disgusting 40+C days (I so don’t miss those), a heat wave here means that temperatures on Saturday and Sunday could get into the mid-thirties. Inland, of course, it will be warmer.

Where am I going with this? Somewhere a few degrees cooler and very green, that’s where.

There’s something about mottled sunlight through a green canopy that instantly cools you down, don’t you think? Or perhaps, it’s rainforest with a lake view that does it?

Whatever it is, Secrets on the Lake has just that – rainforest and lake – and it’s far enough out of town that you feel as though you’re discovering somewhere new.

Open for breakfast, lunch and morning and afternoon teas, it was Sunday lunch for us.

I’m having a bit of a thing about prawn cocktails at the moment – both as the classic dish and reimagined into a roll or a deconstructed salad, so I had the crab and prawn bruschetta ($18). It was light and tasty.

Hubby went for the BLT ($20)- and let me say there was some eating in that.

And Miss T chose (as we knew she would) the Atlantic Salmon, Crushed Potato and Dill, Green Beans,  and Hollandaise ($26).

Price? $$

Light eats available below $20

Mains and burgers around the $24-$26ish range

Where?

207 Narrow Rd, Montville.

If you’re heading from Montville to Maleny, turn right just outside of Montville towards Lake Baroon and if you’re heading from Maleny to Montville, turn left just before Montville.

When

Tuesday to Sunday 8.30am – 4pm

Licensed?

Yes

Gluten-free/ Vegetarian options?

Yes

Website?

https://secretscafemontville.com.au

I’d like you close your eyes and imagine the perfect chip. Are your eyes closed? They’d be crunchy crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside and every single chip on the plate would be like that. No soggy ones lurking about at the bottom – all of them crispy, crunchy and golden delicious.

Welcome to Saltwater, Mooloolaba’s latest fish and chippery and home of, we think, the best fish and chips in Mooloolaba – and I say that with absolute apologies to The Deck (whose calamari is still my fave, and nothing beats eating a kilo of prawns up there), and that one in the Landmark building whose name I can never remember but that does fabulous fish.

Located on The Wharf – which, incidentally, is gloriously coming back to life as we speak – at Mooloolaba, this Hamptons style fish and chippery is a salty sister to Rice Boi and from the same family as Junk and Hello Harry (in Maroochydore).

And the food?

These guys do a chip butty. Yes, I’m serious. Those fabulous chips in two slices of buttered white bread for just $3…I had one late-ish the other Friday night…and washed it down with a glass of prosecco…as you do. But, I digress. The food. Like Rice Boi, there’s nothing on this menu that’s over $20. It’s takeaway but served at a table with a fabulous view…although you could take it away if you wanted to – but seriously, with views like this, why would you?

Hubby had the fish and chips ($10), Miss 19 had the salmon cakes ($4 each) and I had a prawn roll – essentially a Mooloolaba prawn cocktail in a brioche bun…yummo…also $10.

If you want something a tad more luxe, you can. There’s the full prawn cocktail version of the prawn roll I had, plus a good range of burgers ($10), including an oyster po’boy ($15). There’s also spaghettini, risotto, and swordfish skewers. I could go on, but duck over to the Facebook page for a pic of the menu and whatever other info you need.

Where?

On The Wharf at Mooloolaba, Parkyn Parade

When?

From 11.30 – late 7 days a week

How much? $

Nothing over $20 – unless you go for market-priced fish…

Licenced?

Yep

Vegetarian options?

Not really – the chip butty maybe?

Every culture has one- a dish that makes you feel so good inside, it can’t possibly be wrong. A dish that tastes like it should be good for you, that it should be able to beat anything that ails you into submission. Folk food, family food, street food.

Pho, (pronounced “fuh” for the uninitiated) is one such dish.

It sounds simple enough – flat rice noodles, thinly sliced raw beef, a few herbs and spring onions, with an aromatic boiling broth poured over the lot to cook the meat. Too easy? No…the fact is, all pho is not created equal.

Good pho has hidden depths of flavour, enhanced by the chilli, lemon, basil and whatever you add to it. It’s the noodle soup of the Gods, and just by eating it you’re treating your body as a temple. It’s very different from your average food court of franchise pho – the ones where the broth is thin and watery, the beef clumpy, the texture fatty and shallow. Those ones might trick you into thinking you’ve satisfied the craving, but essentially it’s pho without a soul.

Anyways, it’s this (and Hainanese chicken – but that’s another story) that I crave when I’m feeling like I’m fighting off a head cold…or a hangover…or just because I’m craving it. And, up until now, there’s been nowhere on the Sunshine Coast to indulge that craving.

Nguyen Brothers have another two restaurants – in Marrickville and Alexandria in Sydney – and these guys know their pho. The broth is deep in flavour, yet also light with citrusy top-notes. Before I start sounding like I’m describing wine, I’ll also tell you the best thing – they don’t just do one type of beef pho.

Hue style pho

Also on the menu is five spice pho – a super spicy, dark broth of fabulousness for when you need that extra kick – and Hue style pho, a richer, thicker beef soup that my husband has decided is his personal favourite. And, for something lighter, there’s also a chicken pho.

vermicelli salad with crispy chicken

Don’t worry, if you’re not into slurping noodles, there’s still plenty to keep you happy. There’s crunchy spring rolls to startAlso on the lunch menu is Bun (or vermicelli salads), Goi (salad), Bahn Mi (baguettes), Bahn cuon (steamed rice rolls) – which is next on my list of dishes to try – and Com (rice dishes).

crispy skin chicken and rice

At night the menu expands to include crispy pancakes to start, followed by share dishes such as claypot fish, caramelised pork, lemongrass chicken and…I won’t go on.

Where?

Nguyen Brothers is located in the Kin-Tiki Building at 55 Plaza Parade, Maroochydore.

When?

7 days

Lunch 11am – 3pm

Dinner – from 5.30pm

How much? $

There’s nothing on the lunch menu over $15

Dinner mains start at $16

Vegetarian options?

Yes

Licensed?

No…BYO

More information?

Check out their Facebook page here

 

 

 

 

Rice Boi

Let me say this first: I’m in dumpling heaven.

The dumplings

Now that I’ve got that out of the way…actually no, I need to say it again – the dumplings really are that good. In fact, Rice Boi really is that good. This is the street food style eatery that Mooloolaba has been needing. It’s the street food style eatery that I’ve been needing, with the handmade dumplings I’ve been craving.

With a grungey industrial style fit-out that wouldn’t be out of place in Melbourne, fabulous food, a price point that’s affordable for everyone – there’s nothing over $20 on the menu – and that incredible view over Mooloolaba’s canals there’s so much to like about Rice Boi.

The menu at Rice Boi (from their Facebook page)

So, what did we have, aside from the dumplings, of course? here’s another view of them.

Dumplings

The food comes out street food style – as it’s ready – and is designed to share. We nibbled on some lotus chips to start. I first had these in the owner, Tony Kelly’s other restaurant Junk at Maroochydore. As an aside, he also created Hello Harry’s burger restaurant at Maroochydore and Caloundra, and the newly opened Saltwater Fish and Chippery also at Mooloolaba Wharf. This guy really knows his food and his market.

Lotus Chips

Anyways, the lotus chips. If there was ever a snack designed to be eaten with beer, this is it.

We also shared the kung pao calamari and the salt and pepper chicken wings. We’ll be back next week to sample the bao and curries…and the ramen, which looks prettier than any ramen has the right to look. With a couple of drinks each (wine for me, beer for him), we had a great night out for not much more than $60. Next time, though, I’m trying the cocktails.

Where

You’ll find Rice Boi on the Wharf at Mooloolaba, Parkyn Parade.

When

From 11.30am – late 7 days a week

Licensed?

Yes

How much? $

There’s nothing on the menu over $20

Vegetarian options?

Yes

If you want more info, check out their Facebook page.

Update…

Since I wrote this we’ve been back to Rice Boi a few times and sampled so much more. Spoiler alert – the bao are a-freaking-mazing.