Matt and I travelled back to his family's property in Yackandandah, in northern Victoria for the Queen's birthday long weekend.
I took some amazing photos. Oh the visual wizardry I weaved with my little ol' powershot. You shoulda seen 'em. Unfortunately, I deleted the photos by accident. They will be relegated forever to the memory card of my brain, but nevermore my camera. Such a cruel world.
So while you don't get to see the lush rolling hills of Yack, I can give you a couple of handy tips if you're ever in the area. First, hit up the Yack bakery. The Beechworth bakery is about 30 minutes away, more famous and flashy, but the Yack bakery is where it's at. Plain old beef pies are a hit in Matt's household, and I can vouch for the pasties and the cream puffs.
Beechworth does hold a couple of real gems: Provenance is a two-hatted restaurant on the main street. Like the rest of this historic town, it's a gorgeous old stone building, ornate rooms and a well-stocked cellar where the bank vault used to live. The food (as I've been reliably informed) is fantastic, inspired stuff: dishes that would be at home in the city but all the better for it in the country.
Stanley is about a 45 minute drive from Yackandandah. My top tip? Ask a local how to get there. When visiting with our friend's Dom and Amanda and relying on the iPhone, we ended up driving through a national forrest, via old twisty dirt roads. If my memory serves me correctly, we may have had to move branches from the road at one point. Hairy times.
The Stanley pub is a picturesque little hot spot in the middle of a sleepy town otherwise famous for it's apples (and cider).