01 February 2011

Sassafras - A Day At A Village

Sassafras is a quaint little village located in the bushy and scenic Dandenong Ranges, 43km east from Melbourne's CBD (Central Business District).

Today Sassafras is a popular tourist destination. Its commercial centre is based around the junction of the Mount Dandenong Tourist Road and the Mountain Highway and features a diverse collection of boutique stores including Devonshire Tea outlets, nurseries, antique and craft shops.

When Melbournians talk about devonshire tea, the place that comes to mind most, is Sassafras - Miss Marples Tea Rooms; a beautiful two storey English Tudor style house that serves the devonshire tea among other items in its menu, to die for. Hence, you'll sometime see long queues outside the tea room. People are willing to wait to get a seating for their devonshire tea.

However brunch was what we had in mind, so we headed off to Fortnums restaurant, 100m further up towards Olinda along the Mt. Dandenong Tourist Road, from Miss Marples Tea Rooms. You cannot miss it.

Our choices were the Fisherman's Lunch; a selection of crumbed calamari, scallops, prawn cutlets, crab meat and white fish accompanied with chunky potato wedges served with a tartar sauce and Beef Burgundy Pot Pie, Tender beef and vegetables in a hearty red wine sauce, served in a crock pot with a pastry top and accompanied by chunky cut wedges and a side salad.

Well, after the somewhat heavy brunch, checking out the boutique stores, antique and craft shops were our way of walking-off some of the calories from the brunch.

Simply Sassy is a fashion accessories store, just next door to Fortnums. What I remember most of it are the jewelleries that were on display. Handbags and scarves were the other prominent items.

Of all the shops in Sassafras, what got my attention was this antique store with a leafy shady courtyard, behind some shop houses along the main road. It has a small fire going in a huge "bowl" of sort and the smoke from it adds to the fragrance in the air.

It has all sorts of things on display that might interest you; ranging from the outdoor furnitures, accessories and sculptures, even a life sized Ned Kelly to homewares, dolls, clothings, magazines and books including comic books.

You could even toast yourself a mash-mallow, compliments of the store and soak in the peacefull surroundings while you wait for your partner or friends do their window shopping.

The Map to Sassafras, Victoria:

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