Early in January of 2019 we packed up our car full of food, wine and camping gear and headed to Victoria to explore the Grampians and Great Ocean Road. It was a great trip – besides the occasional raucous camping neighbour – and I would highly recommend taking time out of your chaotic life to spend time with a loved one, in the wild, with no mobile phone reception. The trip also provided ample opportunities to try some regional South Australian bakeries as we drove from Adelaide to the Victorian border and then back again nine days later. After our Victorian adventure, and heading back home, we found ourselves in Mount Gambier – perfectly timed for morning tea and feeling peckish.
Several of our friends grew up in Mt. Gambier, so we asked them: out of all the bakeries in the area which one should we review for the blog? We were directed to two bakeries; firstly, OK Pie Shop and secondly, Homestyle Bakery. The OK Pie Shop grabbed my attention because who calls themselves only ‘OK’ rather than ‘Great’ or ‘Phenomenal’ – was it humility or were they really only just ‘ok’? It sits in a cute little central shopping district, the hub of Mt. Gambier, and was filled with elderly ladies gossiping. Disappointingly, the shop only had jam donuts, which don’t meet our blog criteria. So, we moved on.
The second recommendation was Homestyle Bakery, a few streets over. OK Pie Shop was crammed in a tight shopping district with a distinct lack of parking. Homestyle Bakery, on the other hand, sat independent, next to a train yard converted into a pleasant reserve, with a large parking lot that baked in the sun. Homestyle Bakery had a great selection of pies as well as many delicious looking donuts and other baked and fried sweets. The server was friendly and seemed to know the locals well, with a high volume of foot traffic in and out of their doors. There wasn’t much seating, and the weather was pleasant, so we took a couple of pies and a donut to share outside, sitting at some tables and chairs by the reserve and man-made pond. We were quickly joined by a waggle of waddling ducks that clearly were used to more generous patrons than ourselves, squawking in dismay when they got none of our crumbs.