The sun is shining down on the freeway as my partner in crime, Ben, and I begin our road trip to the North Coast. Having a fairly low tolerance for the less-skilled drivers on the road (I didn’t beep the horn once) we planned to stay at Port Macquarie for a night before driving on to Byron Bay where we were going to bring in the new year.
We arrived at our hotel just after 2pm and after literally throwing our bags in our room, we were back out on the streets to check out all Port Macquarie has to offer. After circling the town and reviewing the menus of all the local haunts, we arrive back at the cafe next door to where we are staying. We are greeted by a friendly wait person and taken immediately to our seats. This place is busy for 3pm! Afternoon tea or cheeky drinks are popular here perhaps?
For lunch I order the Grilled Chicken Burger on turkish. We had a little difficulty finding a Vegan dish for Ben, however, the wait staff were fantastic and suggested a few alternatives the kitchen could whip up for him. After making a list of Ben’s favourite ingredients, our order was whisked off to the kitchen and we waited in anticipation (and starvation).
Considering The Corner Restaurant was bustling, our food and delicious Campos Coffees were delivered to our table in good time. I’m extremely happy with my choice, it is much more flavoursome than any chicken burger I’ve been able to find in Sydney so far. Trying a piece of chicken on its own, it’s been nicely marinated which has also kept the chicken tender. The bacon is cooked to perfection and not too crispy, however, I am in love with the tomato chutney. It ties all the ingredients together so well and adds that something special. Ben enjoys his vegan baguette which is lightly toasted and packed full of fresh, colourful vegetables such as beetroot, asparagus, tomato and rocket. It also has some of the chutney to add some flavour and as we both agree how delicious it is, we decide to buy a jar to take home for ourselves.
Dessert brings with it a rush of excitement. I get a sugar high just by looking at the small mountain of chocolate cake. I waste no time stabbing the fondant with my spoon in hope that the centre is runny chocolate centre. And that is was. The warm chocolate oozed out like lava and nothing short of sublime. It is a decadent dessert so it’s perfect for sharing but I wouldn’t blame you if you wanted one all for yourself. Just be sure there’s someone to roll you out of the restaurant afterwards! Oh and I do have to apologise for the quality of the photo, I was in such a rush to try the fondant, I couldn’t keep my hands from shaking. Note to self: bring tripod any time chocolate is involved.
We’re back early the next morning before continuing on our road trip. I would have usually gone to a different place to eat, however I’d spent a good hour the day before studying every item on their menu I had my heart set on the buttermilk pancakes (which are served with pistachio ricotta but I go without) and no one was going to take that away from me. Ben, who is easier to please when it comes to food than myself, selects the sourdough with The Corner Restaurant Strawberry Jam. There’s his serving of fruit for the day, so now I can’t tease him for being a bad vegan.
Ben’s breakfast comes with two generous slices of sourdough and just enough strawberry jam. But let’s get back to the pancakes. I have a stack of not 2, but 3 perfectly golden brown buttermilk pancakes that only dreams are made of. I admit, I have a soft spot for pancakes, but wow, they were absolutely divine. The banana jam was incredible, I’d never tried it before and it matched the flavour of the maple syrup extremely well. The serving was more than enough, I was upset that I had to leave some behind as I had a long drive ahead. But I’d definitely go back for another round!
To wrap up, The Corner Restaurant provides a relaxed environment, fresh ingredients with staff who are passionate about customer service and best of all, it’s located a short stroll from the water (a great place to walk of your Chocolate Fondant)! So when you’re next on the Mid North Coast do pop in. It’s a great place for those who like to graze all day as there’s a wonderful variety of dishes on the menu boasting local seasonal produce.
You can find The Corner Restaurant at 11 Clarence Street, Port Macquarie. They’re open 7 days for breakfast, lunch and dinner from 7am until late. A point to note; there are car spaces located close by, however they are limited. For more information on this award-winning restaurant, check them out on http://www.portmacquarierestaurant.com.au.