Albert & Co
This light-washed cafe is a sprightly first stop as you pull into Lakes Entrance in East Gippsland.
Albert & Co has been operating for a number of years, but it wasn't until December 2017 that it moved to its current prime waterfront position. Owners Matt O'Donnell and John Marshall had been running the cafe (and busy catering business) from a matchbox-sized kitchen in nearby Kalimna. Their excitement at working in the larger space is palpable.
The coffee here is good. There's Five Senses Coffee beans, Gippsland Jersey full cream, Bonsoy or Milk Lab almond and lactose-free milks.
The food is all about showcasing the region - free-range eggs from Forge Creek; sardines out of the lake just beyond the conservatory-esque windows; local beef, pork, lamb and cheese; and vegetables harvested from the kitchen garden.
The cafe runs breakfast through dinner (depending on the day), meaning you can pair your Pop's Lunch of local smoked meats, cheeses, house-made dips, pickles and sourdough with a beer, cider or wine, also from the region.