Daylesford Lake House.
The main restaurant.
A perfect retreat to escape the hustle and bustle of city life Daylesford Lake House has it all: restaurants, suites, cooking classes, function room and even a romantic boat ride.
In 1984, Lake House began trade as a 45-seat restaurant. Its owners, chef Alla and artist Allan Tasker, opened in the days when it wasn't easy to find good food, wine or coffee in regional Australia. Daylesford was depressed, had high unemployment, half the shops in town were shut and traditional industries were struggling.
It took great courage for the Taskers to take the chance in a quiet, albeit very beautiful, part of the Victorian countryside. Their dream was to establish a rural restaurant worthy of a journey, similar to those they had experienced in Europe.
After three-and-a-half years of hard work, extensive landscaping and planting, Lake House opened and created quite a stir, particularly for those looking for a traditional Devonshire tea. The menu was based on classic French cuisine. They made their own bread, pastries, sausages, charcuterie, condiments and sweets, changing with the seasons and using the little regional produce which was available in those days.
A glowing review in the Melbourne Age tempted foodies to take the drive to Daylesford and now there is a well-beaten track from locals, as well as interstate and international travellers who go miles to indulge their tastebuds.
The main restaurant seats 100 and is open every day for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They have 10,000 bottles of wine under 750 labels. The Cellar dining room has a big round oak table which seats just 14 and is perfect for more intimate, special occasions.
Alla has encouraged local growers to provide supplies and they now purchase wild mushrooms, sour cherries, berries, stone fruits, herbs, chestnuts, game, free-range poultry, cheeses, smoked goods, honey, yabbies, eels, trout and farmed Murray cod. Wine and food of the region is proudly branded under the Daylesford-Macedon Produce logo.
A beautifully-designed function room for 120 has expanses of windows and a large terrace and the use of timber, stone and water adds to the ambience. Its demonstration kitchen is used for cooking classes. Well-known chefs are invited to give classes, which are interactive.
There are 33 rooms and suites at Lake House, ranging from very comfortable country style to grand luxe. Guesthouse rooms are part of the original homestead. Each has a queen bed, ensuite, television and minibar. Adjacent to the rooms is a spacious guest lounge with open fire, billiard room, spa and sauna.
The 12 Waterfront Suites have contemporary furnishings, king beds with crisp white linen and private lounge area. They also have DVD player, satellite television, CD and VCR. The spacious bathrooms have dual showers, separate dual spas and heated floors. Private balconies or terraces overlook the lake and lagoon.
The lake itself plays an important part of an enjoyable visit to the Lake House. You can take a refreshing dip or enjoy a romantic boat ride.