Mornington Peninsula is such a beautiful place with so many experiences to offer. It’s only an hour’s drive from Melbourne and it has some of the most breathtaking beaches, impressive food and wine destinations and gorgeous sceneries to match. It’s no wonder that I make frequent trips down to Mornington Peninsula.
High Tea on the High Seas! Searoad Ferries
Dates: Every Sunday until December 21st 2014.
Bookings: 03 5258 3244
If you are like me and you love high tea, then you will love this next experience! No, I’m not talking about going to a hotel in Mornington Peninsula, but boarding the Queenscliff Sorrento Ferry for High Tea! Yes, High Tea on the High Sea! And let me tell you – it isn’t expensive at all.
The High Tea on the High Seas package is only $40.00 per person, including return fares!
Searoad Ferries is considered Australia’s busiest car and passenger ferry service. They started off in 1987 as a single vessel operation, transporting around 300 passengers and 30 vehicles, and is now transporting 737,000 passengers each year with three vessels! Two weeks ago they won the 2014 Victorian Tourism Award! It’s their second year winning the Major Tour / Transport Operator. They will be going on to winning the 2014 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards. Congratulations! :)
Just before they won the award, I had the pleasure of experiencing this High Tea on the High Seas with my cousin Yvonne. The weather looked a bit dull and grey when we arrived in Mornington Peninsula, but the weather turned better, although it was really windy! (Was a bad idea wearing a dress!). We arrived about half an hour before boarding, and I managed to take a few snaps of the gorgeous scenery!
If you are looking at travelling to Queenscliff or Sorrento, you can also bring your car or bike along! If you have a bus, you can also do that too! because… The ferry is this big! *GASPS* Yes, I must admit, I’ve never been aboard a ferry this big! Boarding the ferry that day took a bit of time because it was coincidentally a bike marathon from Queenscliff to Sorrento – therefore we needed to wait for the cyclist to board first. The High Tea is located in a private function room, namely the Portsea Lounge. Once we sat down, a waitress came over to take our orders for drink. Of course, I ordered a Skinny Latte, while my cousin ordered a soy hot chocolate. You also have the choice of ordering sparkling wine. In all honesty, I had my reservations about the High Tea when I found out how price of the High Tea, especially when you are used to pay $50 – $60 for High Tea at the top Melbourne hotels. However when we arrived, I was pleasantly surprised with the nicely ironed white clothes, and tier of sweet and savoury finger food! First, we had our soft buttery scones, smeared with lots of Beach Cafe Jam & Double Cream! It was so good I had two before I even started on the savoury finger food. For the savoury finger food there were: Cucumber & Sour Cream Sandwich, Smoked Salmon & Avocado Sandwich, Caramelised Onion, Goat’s Cheese & Spinach Tart and Roast Lamb & Roquette Roll. At first sight the Roast Lamb & Roquette Roll, did look dry to us, however when we took a bite of the roquette roll with the roast lamb, it was surprisingly moist and tender. I love the peppery taste of the added rocket. Next up was the Caramelised Onion, Goat’s Cheese & Spinach Tart. Out of all the savoury dishes, this was my favourite. Buttery and soft tart that encased the beautiful sweet caramelised onion, the creaminess of the goat’s cheese, which also added flavour. The added egg mixture made it a delight to eat. The last two savoury items were the Smoked salmon, avocado & whole grain mustard sandwich, and Cucumber & Sour cream sandwich. Honestly, it’s really hard to go wrong with these two classics. Soft brown bread, with slices of fresh smoked salmon along with a peppery whole grain mustard. Part way through our high tea, we arrived at Queenscliff. I left my seat to take a few photos. I must say it was rather windy that day, and it was a very bad idea wearing a skirt! The gorgeous scenery of Queenscliff – sadly I didn’t disembark, but I will surely some day! A light clean tasting cucumber sandwich – however I can’t really taste the sour cream. In my opinion, I think the sweets are the best part of high teas! For sweets, there were: Blueberry Macaron, Lamington, Chocolate Mousse, and Apple & Rhubarb Crumble. For those who know me, you will know that my favourite sweets are macarons. While I don’t eat it often, I would constantly look at macarons in awe. There was a time where I made macarons three weeks in a row. The Blueberry Macaron is gorgeous in lavender colour – the outer side of the shell is crispy, whilst the inside is slightly chewy – just the way that all macarons should be. The feet of the macarons were well formed. The gananche is blueberry flavour, however only very subtle. Okay, the Lamington, was surprisingly good. One bite into the lamington and I noticed how moist and soft the lamington was. It also has a very thin layer of chocolate sauce. I have to say, I think I liked the laming tons more than the macaron! The whole high tea session, I was eyeing the chocolate mousse with the macadamia nut crumble. It must have been the smoothy creamy look of the chocolate mousse with the coating of macadamia crumble. At first thought, the chocolate mousse looked like it was made out of milk chocolate, however it tasted very much like dark chocolate, with a rich chocolate taste. The mousse was very smooth and creamy, while the macadamia nut crumble added texture to the mousse. Honestly, I was pretty full by the time we finished the savouries, however I couldn’t leave without trying out all the items. The Apple & Rhubarb was soft and tasted tart, but I would say that it was more along the sweet side. I also love the slightly crisp golden crumble on top! What an enjoyable yet unique way of having high tea on the high sea! A recommended experience for those who are lovers of high tea! You won’t be staring at hotel interiors but the gorgeous scenery of the seas! Please note that the crossing time from Queenscliff to Sorrento and vice versa, takes approximately 45 minutes, therefore you will need to stay on board and not disembark. Well you can disembark if you wish to disembark to look around, however you will need to buy a one way ticket! So best to sit back, sip tea /coffee and/or sparkling wine, eat scones and other finger food and relax!
Main Ridge Dairy
After many trips down to Mornington Peninsula, I finally made it to Main Ridge Dairy! Over the past few years, I have grown to love and appreciate cheese along many other fine things in life like food and wine! ha! Main Ridge dairy is an award winning farmhouse cheese factory and goat dairy. As it is located close to the ocean, the quality of the milk is great due to the lush green pastures for the cute little goats to eat! When we visited, we didn’t sit down to try out their cheese platters as we were on our way to an event that day (will be available in Part 2). The whole purpose was to check out the place and buy some cheese to take home! Look at how cute the letterbox is!
All the animals are free range in the gorgeous green 130 acre farm. There are over 200 goats on the farm. The owners of the farm, Damien and Bess, runs daily tours so that visitors can learn about the dairy process and meet the animals. Sadly I didn’t have the chance to do it, but I did take a lot photos of the goats! The goats were particularly gas-y when I took photos of them – my cousin and I were in giggles when we were snapping photos!
After taking photos, we went in the shop to to browse around, buy some cheese before heading to our event… To be continued… Disclaimer: Peach was invited as a guest of Searoad Ferry and Chatterbox Marketing to attend the High Tea on the High Sea experience. Main Ridge Dairy was visited on personal basis. All opinions and views on views on www.peach-water.com are honest and purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the product.