Pine Grove, Carlei change with the times

By Tania Phillips

Takeaway food options might be here to stay at the Pine Grove Hotel and Carlei Wines at Upper Beaconsfield following their success during lockdown.

Necessity is often the mother of invention and while the Carlei family, who own both establishments, might not have invented takeaway food they certainly hadn’t considered it or had it as an option until the Government closed the doors of hotels and wineries across the country back in March.

Forced, like a lot of businesses, to re-evaluate what they do, the Carlei family introduced takeaways and even a Providore cook at home range and take-away cocktails.

Rebecca Carlei, daughter of winery originator Sergio Carlei, said they had never thought of the takeaway angle before.

“We will certainly be looking to continue – if not expanding the takeaway side when this is all over,” she said.

Usually in charge of the Winery’s export market, Rebecca herself has been repurposed doing a little bit of everything as the family and staff (who she says have become more like family in these uncertain times) work together to provide food, wine and even ready-made takeway cocktails to their local community.

“The cocktails are perfect after a day of homeschooling the kids,” she joked.

The Pine Grove Hotel has been through plenty of trials in the past, originally built in the 1880’s but burned down in the 1900’s. It was rebuilt, only to be destroyed again in recent history during the horrific Ash Wednesday fires of 1983. The hotel was rebuilt once more and reopened in 1984.

The hotel is situated within close proximity of Beacon Hills Golf Course and Cardinia Reservoir and usually you’d be able to enjoy a round of golf or tour the local attractions before coming to Pine Grove Hotel for lunch or dinner.

But until things start to open up a bit more next month and they can start having people back in to dine (socially distanced of course), you can still either enjoy takeaway food and drinks including some of Rebecca’s mother’s mouthwatering Italian pizza and Chef cooked meals.

Or you can even pick up Chef created cook-at-home food.

“We are calling it our Pinegrove Providore range,” Rebecca said.

“We have a range of quick sauces, soups and broths.

“Try making the Homemade Bone Broth into a warming chicken Ramen! Simply add it as a stock replacement, or flavour enhancer!”

You can find the Cook at Home range, the cocktails and a nice bottle of the Carlei wines at the Piney bottleshop.

The bottleshop is currently open Monday to Wednesday from 3pm for alcohol and 5pm for food and Thursday to Sunday from 7.30pm until late.

Head to the Pine Grove Hotel facebook or website and order online!

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