Behind the velvet curtains in the back of a whisky bar, an exclusive dining gem shines bright in Healesville

WORDS Pip Young | PHOTOGRAPHY Annette O’Brien

There is always something exciting happening in Healesville, but over the last few months, something tiny but wondrous has been brewing. Only two years ago we welcomed Cavanagh’s Whisky and Alehouse to the main street, quickly becoming a firm favourite of both locals and visitors alike. In this time, it has also become a den for creatives to share ideas, stories, and dream up collaborations – perhaps owing, on occasion, to the marvellous selection of whisky available!

Joel Alderdice, already established as one of the regions finest chefs; hatted, and with a cult following, after reinventing the renowned restaurant at Tarrawarra Estate, became firm friends with Brendan and Kate, the owners of Cavanagh’s, through conversations in this bar. Six months or so ago, Joel was having a few drinks with Brendan, when an idea came to him, leading Brendan to show Joel the bar’s small kitchen area, and asking, “What kind of things do you reckon we could serve from this space?” What began as an idea to simply serve food from the bar, evolved into an exclusive dining experience like no other.

Read the full article in issue 58 Winter 2024 here.