Restrained Finery at The Piggery Cafe in Burnham Beeches
The Piggery Cafe in Burnham Beeches delights as a go to destination where finery meets a casual expression. The World Loves Melbourne was invited to the winter series where the cafe is open twice a month on a Friday night with affordable special featured dish and glass of wine (you can also order other menu items). The Piggery Cafe is the masterstroke of Shannon Bennett and is a gourmet retreat with the first phase of development complete. We were taken in by the beauty of the property; it's a fabulous place to imbibe when visiting the Dandenong Ranges. We were here on invite to experience the Mushroom risotto with Shannon Bennett supplying truffles from his own property and employing the services of his own truffle dog (as you do). Come here during the day for a Scrambled duck eggs breakfast or lunch with standouts such as Wagyu burger and fries, or Pork Belly BLT.
Says the website,
"Phase #1 of Operation Burnham Beeches headed up by Vue de monde chef, restaurateur and director Shannon Bennett along with business partner Adam Garrisson is now complete. The state-of-the-art Burnham Bakery and the adjoining Piggery Café are both in full swing and baking enchanting in-house breads and pastries. Our crack bakery team are also supplying several other big-name restaurants including Rockpool and Bistro Guillaume, plus all other Vue Group outlets.
The Piggery Café, managed by English lass Emma Lloyd and Frenchman Max Peyrard (former Bistro Vue bar manager), has been designed in a warm and rustic manner with touches of modernity. Working with global architecture firm Woods Bagot, the design of Burnham Beeches is focused on creating a venue dedicated to the promotion of the best of Australian culture across all facets of heritage, architecture, food, art, hospitality and inspiring landscape.
In time, Australia’s longest chicken run will be built at Burnham Beeches plus a 16-cow automated dairy, along with the steakhouse, microbrewery and piece de resistance, the European-style food/hospitality/residential hub that aims to be Australia’s first six-star luxury retreat.
Outside a slew of tables lay under heating strobes looking out to lawn bowls, croquet and bocce pitches. Look even further across the 23-hectare estate and into the distance and you’ll spot the 500-tree trufferie, extensive vegetable gardens (now providing organic produce for Vue de monde and assorted Vue Group restaurants) and an emu enclosure with the grand ambition of sourcing the eggs to use in the Piggery Café dishes.
We will succeed in making Burnham Beeches the world’s first complete gourmet retreat that is harnessed by nature and complemented by human understanding. A deep compassion and respect for the environment that surrounds us is key in driving the Burnham Beeches vision.
Here at Burnham Beeches no chemicals or harmful farming practices are used across any inch of the deluxe property grounds. We want our small, engaging parcel of 66 acres to provide us with as much a story as it does food.
Think of it as sustenance for the mind and soul."
The Piggery has a romance about it as a large converted barn, with a spacious dining area conducive to conviviality and groups of friends. We were immediately impressed by the vibe of the cafe, as somewhat European.
The Piggery delivered with the Mushroom risotto, featuring creamy risotto and the indulgence of truffles from the property being shaved in front of you...
The Mushroom risotto was rich and rustic, perfect for a hill's winter evening...
The risotto was accompanied by a high class fresh Seasonal salad, we understand was also from the property. A gourmet retreat indeed.
The Piggery stamps itself as not your average cafe. Something more than a cafe. On this night was a fine jazz duo in full flight.
This was a defining moment as my son was introduced to the joys of truffles...
Not to mention the meal came with high class wine options including this Pyrenees classic. We also enjoyed their sparkling mineral water produced on site.
The Piggery then delivered with a charming dessert of Rhubarb and apple crumble with cranberries and cream. The dish honoured the fruits and berries with a superb crunch of the crumble.
The Piggery features a front counter of delights. Staff are exceptional; again it's more than a cafe. You can see the stamp of Shannon Bennett on everything. A property pulsating with vision and imagination.
Hang up your coat...
Checking out the rest of the property is a joy, with exciting plans in place. Anyone for a spot of lawn bowls or croquet? Since our recent visit we've been spreading the news. A unique and special experience in the beautiful Dandenong Ranges with a direct route meaning only 45 minutes from the city. Highly recommended.