Once arriving in Melbourne we ate the Manoosh felafel rolls that we brought with us from Sydney, picked up out car (a lovely dark red Corolla that I named Ruby) and drove out to Bed & Broccoli, Australia's first and currently only (though there is a new one coming next year) vegan B&B. I had been wanting to go here ever since I heard about it, so could not go to Victoria without visiting!
A lot of the blogs I have seen about Bed & Broccoli focused on the food and the animals, which I will also be talking about a lot, but not much about the accommodation itself. The B&B is in a converted old dairy, and comprises of a bedroom, a bathroom, a small foyer and a larger kitchenette/dining/lounge room. There is tea and coffee, apple juice and soymilk in the fridge, and body wash, shampoo, conditioner, handwash and body lotion in the bathroom. There isn't much phone reception there, and no wifi, but Leigh and I found that if we sat on the sofa in the back corner of the lounge we could get some reception and 3G (we are both with Optus).
When we arrived, we were greeted by Nikki and Scott and their dogs Chaz and Khan. It was almost dinner time, so Leigh and I got ourselves settled and then had a short stroll around the property. Bed & Broccoli is also home to three rescue cows, a lot of chickens and two wild peacocks. Check out this handsome welcome committee (Chaz at the back, Khan at the front). Khan is particularly attentive to guests, and will often be found hanging around the B&B seeing if you would like him to come in and help with anything.
Breakfast is included in the nightly price, but you can also purchase dinner ($24.90 per person) and dessert ($9.90 per person), which we decided to do both nights we would be staying there. The week before arriving Nikki sends you a list of menu options, so you can pick what breakfast, dinner and dessert you would like for each day. We were intrigued by the Caesar Salad with Poached Egg, so chose that for our first night, along with some garlic bread and pappadums as we were worried that the salad would not be enough. Ha! Bed & Broccoli is extremely generous in their serving sizes.
Check out the size of this salad! It was amazing!! The tofu poached eggs on top were amazing, with a runny center (see the action shot I included) that oozed beautifully over all the greens. The homemade bacon was like nothing I had tried before (I now know how it is made after purchasing the Bed & Broccoli Cookbook at World Vegan Day). An excellent salad, all rounded up with carby sides. Yum!
For dessert we had Butterscotch Pudding, which was phenomenal. A big bowl of piping hot pudding, light and fluffy, with a gooey butterscotch sauce underneath. Once you crack through the pudding top that sauce just bubbled on up like liquid gold.
After dinner we were getting ready for an early night when we heard the sound of a peacock calling and went to investigate. There we saw the magnificent Samson high up in a tree! The photos are too dark and blurry to really show anything, but it was amazing. His mate Delilah was in another tree. One thing I did get a photo of was the amazing sunset.
The next morning breakfast was a steaming crock of huge Banana Pancakes, with some maple syrup on the side. These was serious pancakes, and so delicious!
We went for a stroll and were greeted with a squabble of happy chickens trotting around the lawn, and looking keenly at us to see if we had any treats.
They have four roosters at B&B, three big ones and one tiny little guy named Hef. Hef is hilarious, the other roosters avoid him and he runs with all the chickens while the other three are off in their own little corner. Hef's crow seriously sounds like he is saying 'I am a rooster', and he likes to proclaim this fact often. Funny boy!
A tree in the driveway to the property is home to a family of Tawny Frogmouths, including their two babies who had just gotten big enough to leave the nest and join mum and dad on the branches.
If you bring some cut up apples, you are able to feed the three cows. These guys are living out their lives happily on the property. It is a stark contrast to the dairy cows you see walking up and down the laneway behind the property twice a day to go and be milked, which is a sad reminder of the exploitation that most cows are subjected to.
The two big boys are Frankie and Pacific. They also have a sweet old Jersey cow named Squirty, who loves to lick your entire hand when you feed her apples. My hands were well exfoliated after feeding her!
Lunchwise, they can make you up some of their awesome vegan mac and cheese, or you can find your own. We were planning on a lazy day, so we had gone into Shepparton that morning and visited the IGA, where we found a good spread of vegan dips to put together a yummy lunch.
We spent the afternoon watching DVDs (Daredevil must be one of the worst movies ever made), playing on the two player arcade game station that they have there (so much fun!!) and also played a round of Veganopoly. I actually hate Monopoly because I think it ruins friendships and can often take forever, but I couldn't say no to Veganopoly. It didn't take very long at all, though the friendship did end up on rocky ground at times. Unfortunately Leigh did not come out the winner, here is what she thinks about that! Oh dear.
Dinner that night was pizza, which we cooked in the pizza oven they have next to their dam. It is in a really cute little shed that also has yoga mats in it! We saw a family of wood ducks. This type of duck is actually what started me on a very long path that ended up in veganism, so it always make me extra happy to see them.
Unfortunately I had been battling with a headache all day, which was turning particularly vicious, so I went back to lie down while Leigh finished baking the pizzas and brought them back to the B&B. You could choose two flavours, so we had picked Pepperoni Potato (no actual faux pepperoni, instead pepperoni seasonings and thick potato slices - yum) and Pumpkin and Feta. And yes, I did pick off all the capsicum before I ate my pieces. We also had garlic bread, because what is pizza without garlic bread? Sorry for the slightly blurry photos, they went with the slightly blurry head I had at the time.
Dessert was Strawberry Parfait - deliciously rich cashew cream topped with a layer of blended strawberries.
After dinner it was straight to bed for me with some Nurofen Plus, my Migrastick and my first migraine in two years. Opposite of yay. But thankfully it had lifted by the next morning, so I could enjoy our last breakfast: Tofu scramble with toast, tomatoes and mushrooms. It was a great scramble! It is worth noting that Nikki makes as much from scratch as possible - so bread, garlic bread and pizza bases were all freshly made and extra delicious.
That brought our stay at B&B to an end, and Nikki gifted us with a Carrot and Sultana Loaf to sustain us on our journey. Bed & Broccoli is amazing place, and I highly recommend it to everyone! The food is amazing and generous, the hosts are delightful and the animals are lovely. Leigh left this message on the chalkboard before we left.
Cute Kitty Photo of the Post
There are no cats at Bed & Broccoli, but here is a photo of Leigh's cat Squeak sitting in a box before we left Sydney.