MUSE - Maggie Scardifield
Words by Maggie. Photography by Maggie + Morgan Jackson
Food and travel writer and Studio Search Party director Maggie Scardifield is taking us on a whistle-stop tour of the NSW far south coast. First stop? Bermagui.
“You can’t do the Sapphire Coast without making a beeline for Honor Bread,” she says. “I can still hear the crunch of the tebirkes there – a shatteringly crisp, layered Danish pastry with poppy seeds – and breakfast pastries have been ruined forever since (sorry Sydney, but nothing compares). Just a hop away is the excellent Hyper Hyper Coffee at Mister Hope Espresso – if you’re lucky, owner Steve Hope will be there to have a chat about jazz and his next pop-up cinema night, Electric Hope. A stroll to Bermie’s magic Blue Pool is a must (even if you’re not swimming). Likewise, an afternoon jaunt to Bermagui Gelati Clinic on the Fishermen’s Wharf for a scoop of tempranillo, zesty local finger lime, or both.”
Now that restrictions are easing, it’s time get back to your Empty Esky Bushfire Recovery and Spend With Them plans. If a road trip to the south coast of NSW is on the cards, Maggie has some tips. “Tathra is great for a little getaway – surrounded by national parks, beach and dreamy swimming spots like Nelson’s Lagoon,” she says. “Get a couple of friends together and stay at Seatons Tathra. They’ve honestly thought of everything (even the wattle-seed bath soak) and it’s the perfect weekender for lazy days spent reading, cooking and whale watching. For breakfast, the town fav is on the historic steamer wharf at the sun-kissed The Wharf Local. Enjoy your pesto and avo toast to a soundtrack of the water lapping underfoot, then browse the local ceramics in the café gallery. For sundowners? Spotting tails, beer in hand, from the outdoor deck at the revamped Tathra Hotel is ripper. They swapped the pokie room for a microbrewery.”
Maggie has been visiting Pambula Beach since she was a baby. In fact, it was likely the first time her toes touched the ocean. “It’s changed a lot since I was a kid, but the seafood is just as good, and the Pambula River Mouth, just as magic,” she says.
“Start with the best of the best and take an oyster tour with the Croc Dundee of oysters, Captain Sponge’s Magical Oyster Tours on Pambula River. You can eat Sydney Rocks with him straight from the leases while hearing about the Indigenous history of the area.
After throwing yourself in the water, the Longstocking Brewery is an impressive watering hole for more oysters, small-batch beers and pizze. And if you can find yourself a designated Dave, jump in the car and book in at the cellar door Stoney Creek Farm Distillery. Their London Dry-style North Of Eden Gin is made with everything from local kelp to oyster shells, and fruit from the family’s orchard. #spendwiththem, drink some gin, and then spend some more.”