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HOT: The Plough Inn, Tarrawingee

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

The Plough Inn in Tarrawingee (20 minutes out of Beechworth) debuted in the 2013 Age Good Food Guide with a 14/20 score and it's the kind of place that you would happily drive especially to visit, particularly if you have kids. While I'm generally not much of a pub-going person I do like visiting country pubs that specialise in serving up great meals.

We were invited to try lunch at The Plough Inn thanks to Tourism North East. Ales have been served at the historic wayside inn since 1864 but the menu now is very much Modern Australia with a focus on showcasing local produce. It's a gastropub in the middle of nowhere with a surprisingly sophisticated kitchen – though if you're after a parma or burger the bar menu caters to those tastes too.

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

To start, we shared the Chef’s tasting plate for two ($30). My favourite was the the beetroot cured Atlantic salmon, particularly the interesting colour and textural elements in the form of the pickled baby beetroot and orange jelly.

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

For mains T tried the roast rump of Rutherglen lamb with spring vegetables and orange onion jam ($29). The lamb was a little overcooked for his liking but otherwise beautifully presented with an unusual combination of flavours as citrus isn't often served with red meat.

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The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

I ordered the free range duck leg cooked two ways with braised leeks, confit potato and black eyed bean salsa ($29). Again the duck leg was a little overcooked and dry but the parcel of minced duck meat was juicy. The dish was again generously proportioned and I particularly liked the sweetness of the leeks.

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

Lady AB sampled the ‘Little People's Menu' for under 15s ($12.50) with a homemade pizza topped with napoli and mozzarella and a chocolate frog in the pond for dessert.

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

Our dessert was the Stanley apple crumble tart with poached rhubarb and vanilla ice cream ($15). The pie had a crumbly and short pie crust and inside was nestled big chunks of braised apple. The rhubarb encircled the tart, alternating poached slices with dots of rhubarb jelly. It was an imaginative rendition of a classic dessert.

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee (8)

The Plough Inn serves families particularly well when the weather's good because they have built a cubbyhouse and play area out the back – the kids can run riot while you sit under the shaded terrace and enjoy your lunch. They are large buckets of toys and books to rifle through even if the weather's inclement.

The Plough Inn, 2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee

Our only complaint was that the food was rather slow in coming. Perhaps the staff thought that as the kids had toys that they would be happy to hang around for 2.5 hours for lunch but alas towards the end the apple pie had to be gobbled up in a hurry with Baby 2.0 crying in the background.

I would definitely recommend a visit to The Plough Inn with or without kids – but if you are on a timeframe you should let the friendly staff know from the outset and it won't lead to any stressful exits or indigestion!


  • pram access
  • high chairs
  • children's menu
  • standard menu suitable for kids
  • books and toys;
  • playground with cubby house; and
  • free parking on site.

The Plough Inn2322 Beechworth-Wangaratta Rd, Tarrawingee 03 5725 1609

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cropped Kristyna Hess Lockdown Portraits x

Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned serial entrepreneur.

As well as being the founder of TOT: HOT OR NOT she helps businesses with their SEO, email marketing & social media as BrightSmart.com.au; she owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au and develops and produces creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com. She used to publish another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

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