In search of the perfect Ploughman’s lunch

Another hard earned break day today following the back breaking work of clearing and stacking bricks from the shade house foundations.

First place on the list for perfect break day was a visit to the famous Margaret River Berry Farm. The Berry Farm constantly changes it’s menu and never disappoints. They always have some sort of sharing plate on, and today it was a Ploughman’s lunch. We’re always in search of the ‘perfect ploughman’s’, so our choice was simple.

Where to start - so much food.

Where to start – so much food.

A delicious sharing platter arrived consisting of hot meat balls, hot stuffed mushrooms, baked pastry pinwheels, chorizo, olives, a couple of good chunks of cheddar , feta with a small tossed salad, ham, warm turkish bread, four different pickles and chutneys, and melons, citrus fruit, pear quarters and grapes. I’ve tried to remember it all, but there was just so much, I’m sure I must have forgotten one or two things.

For me the perfect ploughman’s excels in it’s simplicity, good bread, good cheese, tasty pickles and just a few condiments. So, by it’s title not a perfect, ploughman’s. But as a shared lunch platter by any other name it was absolutely scrumptious.

Pretty cottage gardens at the Berry Farm, a nice place to walk off lunch.

Pretty cottage gardens at the Berry Farm, a nice place to walk off lunch.

Next, a couple of winery visits to admire their beautiful gardens. First, Voyager Estate, famous for it’s grand, formal gardens with trimmed hedgerows, and glorious roses. What better time to visit than mid spring. The roses were blooming beautiful. I noted a couple by name, and next week will attempt to locate them for additions to my own developing rose garden.

Huge rose arbours at Voyager Estate.

Huge rose arbours at Voyager Estate.

Formal hedgerows.

Formal hedgerows.

The Voyager rose garden in full bloom.

The Voyager rose garden in full bloom.

Close up of a perfectly formed rose bloom.

Close up of a perfectly formed rose bloom.

Then before returning home we called into Aravina Estate.

The vines overlooking small lake at Aravina Estate.

The vines overlooking small lake at Aravina Estate.

Those familiar with WA wineries may remember this estate by it’s former name, Amberley Estate. Not only has the name changed, but the gardens also. Their gardens used to always be a refreshing change from the grandeur and pristine gardens of the other wineries in the area. Not that the grandeur isn’t nice to see, but Amberley used to have a flourishing native garden supporting an abundance of bird life. It was always so peaceful. We used to sit on a bench and listen to the birds as they flitted from bush to bush. Alas, most of the natives have now been superseded by ferns and hydrangeas creating yet another winery with a manicured garden. Still nice, but we missed our little winery/native garden sojourn soaking up the ambience of peace and tranquility that used to be associated with Amberley.

Hydrangeas and ferns replacing the old native garden we loved so much.

Hydrangeas and ferns replacing the old native garden we loved so much.

Another pretty vineyard garden.

Another pretty vineyard garden.

A wonderful day. What a pleasure!

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