Well, let me tell you what I discovered...
Canberra's newest 4.5 star hotel, located in between Kingston and Manuka which is a hot spot for anyone that
likes (needs) good food, very good coffee and great service. East Hotel can provide all of this on site at their restaurant OX Eatery and Incredible Bar - so you need not leave the hotel...
Husbo had booked somewhere for a dinner date (more on that later), so we started the evening with a drink downstairs at Incredible Bar. With a name like that, we were expecting something special! They stock a huge range of spirits that decorate the amber-lit bar area, specialising in Gin and Scotch Whisky/Whiskey but there are plenty of wines by the glass, traditional cocktails and local/imported beers.
With one G&T under our belt and some warm olives to stave off hunger pains, we threw on our winter coats and walked in complete darkness through the neighbourhood streets to Canberra's Best Restaurant for 2012 Aubergine. With the best seats in the house we kicked off proceedings with a beer for him and a bubbles for me, a lovely sparkling Rose by Lerida Estate.
We enjoyed 3 beautiful courses of perfectly balanced, creative food that was matched with wines recommended by charismatic sommelier, Josh. We both agreed that Aubergine is well deserving of their two Hat status. Definitely one to put on the list.
A foggy Canberra morning got us up and out of bed to take a couple of snaps en-route for a coffee stop on Lonsdale St, Braddon. The line up at Lonsdale Street Roasters was a good indication that we had come to the right place for our early morning caffeine hit.
We drove back towards the hotel, stopping at Me & Mrs Jones for breakfast. Quick service, friendly staff and perfectly poached eggs - another winner. After a quick browse through the shops along Franklin St, Manuka we met the in-laws and hit the road towards our Mother's Day lunch destination.
Grazing at Gundaroo was well worth the 25 minute drive out of Canberra. The restaurant dining rooms are part of the original 1860's building at The Royal Hotel. Grazing was nothing short of spectacular - check out the menu here. The restaurant is flanked by a chef's garden, resident chooks and a cellar door for Capital Wines including a shop selling local treats, oils and jams.It was time to bid farewell to our nation's capital and we hit the road back to Sydney. I have to say, we both left thinking how delightfully relaxing and laid back our weekend was. There's no place like home but Canberra, you really turned it on for us. Happy Centenary, I think you're getting better with age!
Other places for your hit list:
National Museum of Australia - we didn't have time to peruse the exhibitions, but they have a lovely cafe for lunch, drinks, coffee and a superb gift shop!
Australian War Memorial - the in-laws loved it here and said they could have easily spent an entire day looking at everything. Having visited once before, I opted for a afternoon nap!
National Arboretum - we drove past this beauty but didn't have time to stop. The green-thumb in me was desperate for a look but I'll keep it on the hit list for next time.
Canberra really is a mecca for art galleries and museums - for more click here
And if all that just makes you hungry/thirsty:
Public Bar in Manuka
Old Bus Depot food markets
All this and more info is available at the Visit Canberra website