Great Ocean Hotel: Excellent Food at Inexpensive Prices
The Great Ocean Hotel is one of the pub/restaurants in Apollo Bay right on the main street. We had wandered the main street in search of a place for dinner and this caught our eye. We wanted a local, casual place with a good variety of food options and this hit the spot.
Upon entering there is a large bar area with plenty of seating as well as pool tables and arcade games. The Bistro area is in the back of the pub with a more traditional seating area. We arrived around 6pm, not thing we needed reservations but they were all full up. One of the servers said we could order food here at the counter and they could bring it to the bar area for us, so we took them up on that offer. It was pretty easy for me to decide on a dish as they had a Mexicali Schnitzel that caught my eye right away. My wife chose the Black Angus Scotch Fillet in a Peppercorn sauce with chips. We were given a numbered placard and found a table in the bar along with our drinks.
The food came about ten minutes later on sizable plates. I was amazed at the portion size being so large since the prices were very inexpensive. My Schnitzel was incredible good with a heaping of cheese and jalepenos on top; good flavor and a spicy kick. The salad that came with it was a nice touch to cool down the spicy kick that lingered after in my mouth. My wife loved her fillet. The meat was very tender and the sauce was very tasty. I snatched a fry and dipped it in the sauce for myself...very tasty indeed.
This was a good meal with nice food, casual location and good service. I was glad that we had chosen this for our dinner in Apollo Bay.
Favorite Dish: I was quite happy with my Schnitzel. It had been a long time since I had ordered this at a restaurant and I loved their Mexican twist on it.
Chris's Restaurant: possibly the best restaurant on the Great Ocean Rd
wonderful restaurant which is formal but relaxed. has amazing views over-looking the ocean (Skenes Creek) with beautiful sunsets for that 'special' occasion. the service is formal but relaxed and the staff know there stuff - food and wine. the wine list is pretty amazing and features some fantastic regional Victorian, South Australian and international wines. and the food is superb - featuring wonderful dishes which are predominately Greek/Seafood dishes. Chris is around most evenings to have a chat with you!
Favorite Dish: tough choice - would have to be any of the duck dishes (confit of duck leg or breast fillet) OR octopus. hard to name any dish in this restaurant which you could not classify as your 'favourite' dish on any given night!!
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Food and Dining
La Bimba: A real find
This was quite a find (although pretty obvious as its on the main drag!), a small, fairly intimate bistro on the 1st (American 2nd) floor overlooking the bay. (On return to Melbourne, discovered that it is regarded critically as one of the best on the Great Ocean Rd)
It's a welcoming, comfortable environment, food rather than design being the main focus! Wood and soft lighting create the ambience with the walls exhibiting local artists' work (for sale). Wall overlooking the bay is an all-glass affair which is open to the elements on balmy nights (and as the place is open for breakfast and lunch, stays open most of the day!). Tables at the window are for 2 only.
The menu was a pleasure to read! Surprisingly, for its location, there is less fish on the menu than anticipated - but selection is the classic bistro style, with vegetarian, fish, 2 red meats, 2 white meats, a risotto and a couple of pasta dishes on offer. Wine list limited but good range from AUD$25 - 38 with a couple at the AUD$50 mark.
Favorite Dish: Food was excellent. Linguine Marinara full of seafood, the pasta perfectly cooked. The eye-fillet one huge hunk of meat sitting on artichoke mash, served with a slither of blue cheese and shiraz glaze (it melted in your mouth) and the roast pork & crackling another lump of meat served with basted pear and onion - lots of assaults on your tastebuds there, savoury and sweet.
Desserts not the strong point - the bitter chocolate tart was good, but the rosewater Panna Cotta lacking in substance.
Main courses AUD$22-28
Apollo Bay Hotel: Churn them out
This is a classic fueling spot - a huge pub dining room that churns out the food for the hungry - even on a cold winter's night out of season, this placed is packed. Serried rows of tables, nothing fancy but nothing offensive about it. Its a pub dining room for the masses - no pretentions, no frills. It concentrates on the feeding the hundreds and does it surprisingly well, appealing to all tastes. It may not be the best food, but its isn't bad at all. Not cheapest option, but again not outrageous - this is a key hoiiday spot on the Great Ocean Rd, so you would expect to pay over the odds. So the Apollo Bay Hotel keeps its prices down, relying on high turnovers and repeat custom from family holidaymakers.
Favorite Dish: Check out the long list from the menu. You'll find something that appeals to everyone - from beef/steak, fish, chicken, lamb, veggie,curries, pizza. pastas etc. Virtually all come with vegetables or chips/salad. Also have an excellent selection of kids meals at around AUD$6-8 (the best value turned out to be the Kid's Roast of the Day for $6!!). Chicken Parmigiano was huge and not bad at all for $18 (as said, its a bit more expensive than most places in Melbourne): top steaks at $25-28 on the expensive side but then the lump of meat on the plate was enormous!
Order your drinks from the bar and away you go.
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