March 4, 2020 / By Rosie Stevens
If you’re after an adventurous and adrenalin-packed weekend escape from the city, the Snowy Mountains in NSW has plenty to see, do and explore.
Whether you’re keen to hike to the summit of Australia’s highest peak at Kosciuszko National Park, or soak up the country’s ski and snowboarding mecca during winter, we’re willing to bet that a trip to the Snowy Mountains will work you up quite an appetite.
So, you’re going to need some serious sustenance to get you through, and thanks to a burgeoning food scene that heroes all-things seasonal and regional, there’s an abundance of places to try. Here’s your Weekender guide to cafes in the Snowy Mountains.
Showcasing the vision of two childhood friends, Jindabyne’s Birchwood is into its fourth year of business and has become a stalwart of the region. The kitchen focuses on unique dishes that brim with flavour—we’re talking about their spicy pulled beef on sourdough, served with wild rice, smoked corn and pickled onion salsa, avo, chilli fried eggs, coriander and lime, or Jerusalem lamb with olive and currant yoghurt, smashed peas, charred eggplant, poached eggs, chilli butter, flatbread and herbs.
Even their avo toast is a cut above the rest—served with miso cashew cream, little tomatoes, edamame, pickled daikon, wasabi pea and sunflower furikake, nori, herbs and lemon. Are you drooling, yet?
If it’s a hit of caffeine you’re after, rest assured that you’re in good hands at Birchwood. Canberran’s—you’ll recognise their roast as one of the nation’s capital’s finest; Lonsdale Street Roasters. Hallelujah!
Where: Shop 3/3 Gippsland Street, Jindabyne
When: Coffee 7.00 am - 4.00 pm, food 7.00 am - 3.00 pm daily
The Market, Jindabyne
Another Jindabyne gem, The Market is a concept as much as a cafe. It markets (pun intended) itself as a whole foods grocer and coffee shop, focusing on selling fresh produce, local goods (the drive to support other local businesses in the Snowy Mountains is palpable), and vintage gear.
The menu is a vegan’s dream; brimming with cakes, slices and toasted sandwiches that are all vegan-friendly, alongside fan favourites like açai bowls, avocado toast, and smoothies.
While you’re there you can check out the epic range of vintage apparel on offer—denim, coats, dresses, shirts, hats and accessories plus a whole lot more. And if that wasn't enough to sway you—you can also do a grocery shop while you’re there, making sure to pick up all manner of reusable trappings to make sustainable living a whole lot easier.
Where: Nuggets Crossing Shopping Centre, 6/141 Snowy River Ave, Jindabyne
When: 9.00 am - 5.30 pm weekdays, 9.00 am - 4.00 pm weekends
Offering a big-city vibe hidden in the middle of Jindabyne, CBD—an acronym for Coffee, Beats, Drinks boasts a grungy aesthetic reminiscent of Melbourne’s laneways, alongside a great atmosphere that has made it a hit with both locals and visitors.
The coffee is consistently good (hey—we said it had hints of Melbourne about it!), and should be consumed alongside one of CBD’s signature bagels for a hearty, filling start to the day.
If you’re in the area on a Friday or Saturday night, hit up CBD for some delicious cocktails or to try one of their many single malts on offer. Bottoms up!
Where: Shop 18b Nuggets Crossing Shopping Centre, Jindabyne
When: 7am - 3pm weekdays, 6.00 pm - 10.30 pm Friday and Saturday nights, 7.00 am - 1.00 pm Sundays
The Coffee Pedaler, Tumut
Situated in Tumut, in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains, The Coffee Pedaler is open 7 days a week and prides itself on the popular Pablo & Rusty’s coffee it serves up—day in, day out. The menu offers fan favourites like sandwiches, flat breads and a delicious host of daily specials that range from curry and mac ’n’ cheese to salads and burgers. Eat up!
Where: 1/43-45 Wynyard St, Tumut
When: 7am - 5pm weekdays, 8.00 am - 2.00 pm weekends
Alpine Larder Cafe, Lake Crackenback
Ensconced on the stunning Lake Crackenback Resort and Spa, the Alpine Larder Cafe offers excellent coffee and a diverse menu that heroes Snowy Mountains local produce, served up against a cosy, rustic and hearty setting.
We’d thoroughly recommend the zucchini and corn fritters from the lunch menu, served with jalapeño relish, creme fraiche, salsa verde and rocket, or the classic bruschetta to kick-start your day. For dinner, there’s the likes of vegan nachos, lobster linguine and chicken cutlets served alongside a range of wood fired pizzas that are renowned throughout the region.
Where: 1650 Alpine Way, Crackenback
When: Open 10.00 am - 9.00 pm daily
High Ground Coffee Bar, Perisher
Located in the Perisher ski resort, High Ground promises a stellar cup of coffee, a hearty breakfast, a warming lunch and some après ski fun all within the cafe’s country-cabin vibe. Located just steps away from the village’s 8 ski-lift and boasting unrivalled mountain views, High Ground is the go-to cafe for villagers and visitors alike.
The homestyle food menu served at High Ground encompasses favourites like baked eggs, burgers and salads, alongside delicious desserts and cocktails. What more could you ask for from a seasonal, snowy cafe?!
Where: Perisher Manor, Shop 6, Kosciuszko Rd, Perisher Village
When: Open during snow season from 8.00am on weekdays and 7.30am on weekends
We think you should know: The Weekender's travel guides are independently written by real travellers. We do not receive any money from, or have a sponsorship arrangement with, any of the entities listed in, or referred to in this article.