Forrest General Store
First a butcher, then a takeaway food shop, this old brick stalwart on Forrest’s main drag has been a general store and cafe since 1982.
The cafe turns out homey food, including warming casseroles and soups in winter, and pies, tarts and toasties year-round. Everything is made on-site, often using veggies grown in Richardson’s own patch. What she doesn’t grow comes from nearby farmers, and visitors can take home this produce too.
The shelves are dense with regional provisions, such as Babenorek Estate olives, Ravens Creek Farm cured meats, Forrest Foods shiitake mushrooms, Moriac Farmstead Dairy and Warrnambool Heritage cheeses, along with local chutneys, pasta, honey and gin.
If it’s winter and you need some extra woollens, there are hand-knitted scarves and beanies among the locally made ceramics, skincare and candles.
You can also pick up firewood, newspapers and Apollo Bay Bakery sourdough. The store is the go-to for tourism information too, so you can get recommendations while you sip a coffee made from local Hello Coffee beans, roasted at Apollo Bay Distillery).