The idea of a mid-week lunch with my friends is heaven to me. Unfortunately, it happens all to rarely. Hardly ever actually. So when the lovely Prue of Olive and Clover, said she was coming to Orange with some new pieces for her online store, and could I please take a few pics of them for her blog….an idea was born.
We decided to meet at another friend, Willa Arant’s restaurant Racine. Then gather a few girls together, dress up and take some pics. Here are the results, and Prue has posted more, with recipes too, over on her blog.
With her chef-husband Shaun Arantz, Willa runs Racine with great style and grace. The restaurant has been awarded a chefs’ hat two years in a row now, and is renowned for innovative fine dining grounded (literally) in its use of local produce (including ahem…our Mandagery Creek Venison!). More recently, the couple opened their restaurant up from 10am on Thursdays and Fridays with a more casual cafe-style menu offering everything from pastries to bowls of soup, salads and share plates (the more formal restaurant menu is also available).
The whole set up is just ideal for relaxed catch ups over coffee and pastries (from Racine’s bakery in town) or light lunches. And, unlike many restaurants and cafes it’s absolutely child friendly. Because the restaurant is situated right in the middle of a vineyard, there’s plenty of space for kids to run around (including a wide green lawn often used as a marquee space for the weddings Racine often hosts). Willa provides crayons and paper for creative little people, and encourages the more active young guests to bring soccer balls and have a kick on the lawn while the rest of their party has lunch. Nice hey!