Most of the articles I write here in Card Hacks are devoted to saving money. But for a change here’s an article on how to spend some of that money you’ve saved. This is a simple article on how to catch a train to a pretty little country town in the N.S.W. Central West and have lunch in an excellent restaurant. How simple and pleasurable can life be?
The heritage-listed village of Millthorpe lies between Orange and Blayney. The town was once a major potato and pea growing area that supplied the Sydney market. Today the beautiful and historic bluestone buildings accommodate a selection of art galleries, antique, craft and gift shops, cafes and restaurants.
Our favourite restaurant in Milthorpe is Tonic on the corner of Pym and Victoria Streets. We’ve been there once for dinner and it was excellent. I can thoroughly recommend it for dinner and lunch. A set menu of 5 courses for $80 is served. They’re open for dinner Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and for lunch on Saturdays and Sundays.
We dined there on a Saturday evening. I booked a table for two at 6 pm. On arrival at Tonic, the restaurant was empty. A waitperson showed us to our sparkling white, tableclothed table with imaginative cutlery and shiny wine glasses. We sat down, studied the menu and ordered a bottle of Chardonnay Pinot Noir produced at a local Orange vineyard.
We’d taken just a few sips of our sparkling wine and the first course arrived – a delicious chicken and pork terrine. The restaurant is in a beautiful old building with high ceilings with a quiet wooden floor – like all restaurants should be. There was soft chatter amongst our fellow diners who’d arrived after us. Time disappeared, all the tables were now taken – the restaurant was full. The waitpeople moved effortlessly between the tables. Everyone appeared to be enjoying themselves – even the culinary artists in the kitchen, who were visible from the tables. Four more courses arrived in perfect succession. It was summer and the temperature was cool and comfortable in the restaurant after a hot day. But the restaurant was still warm enough to cause our whole bottle of wine to evaporate. Before we knew it, the evening had come to an end. We headed over to the kitchen and thanked them for a fantastic dining experience.
You’ll need to book a table. Tonic is popular! Call 02 6366 3811 for bookings. Tonic has a website at https://www.tonicmillthorpe.com.au/
Sydney to Millthorpe and return by train
Although it’s a long way to Millthorpe and back in a day it will be a memorable day. You’ll sleep well when you get home. If you’re like me, you’ll probably sleep all the way home on the train 🙂
There’s a daily train service from Sydney to Millthorpe and back.
The train leaves Central at 07:19 each morning and arrives at Millthorpe at 11:48. Tonic restaurant is a five-minute walk from the railway station.
The return train leaves Millthorpe for Sydney at 16:11 and arrives back at Central station at 20:48.
You’ll need to book your trip at https://transportnsw.info/regional or call 13 22 23. Have a credit or debit Mastercard, Visa, American Express or Diners Club card ready. Also if you have a Seniors card – don’t forget that for your half-fare discount.
The full timetable for the journey is at https://transportnsw.info/regional-western-line
Accommodation in Millthorpe
If you deceide to spend the night in Millthorpe here are a list of hotels on Booking.com
We stayed at the Millthorpe Motel – highly recommended. The room was modern, spotlessly clean and comfortable. The owners of the motel did their very best to make our stay as comfortable as possible.
Enjoy your trip.