On a beautiful crisp morning without a cloud in the sky, 18 Classic cars and approximately 36 club members met at the well-known Darnum Stump Tea rooms for a coffee, cake and chat – naturally with the obligatory admiration of each other’s prized cars; which can be seen in John’s photos.
John Fowler – our “Organiser Extraordinaire,” briefed us on the route to Howlers Brewery and the rules of the road. On we travelled leaving Darnum at around 11:00 am for our picturesque, winding drive in the warm sunshine through the countryside of West Gippsland following John’s “Silver Bullet” – S-type Jaguar.
We enjoyed the beautiful hills, valleys and roller-coaster roads (especially Sheehan Rd) and were pleased to see the cows grazing on lovely green, but short pastures. The pastures along all the roads we travelled were much the same – green, but short. It has been a tough farming year.
It was great to view the long procession of classic and sports cars in front and behind as we wound along these wonderful roads. Some of the exhaust notes were wonderful to hear as well.
The Main South Rd through Poowong East had a mix of some more open stretches through the lovely valley and some wonderful winding hilly sections – recently resurfaced. Later, another road recently re-surfaced, was Ferriers Rd, along a winding valley up to Nyora through open farmland. We had to be careful of the loose stones on both these sections.
After Nyora, the countryside became less open with a lot of tea-tree like scrub alongside the open winding and flatter roads. We eventually passed the sand-quarries and knew we were getting closer to Lang Lang.
The drive took us about an hour, give or take, arriving at Howlers Brewery and Restaurant in Lang Lang at 12:15 for a refreshing beer, cider, mixed drink or wine, and lunch.
We sat outside in the sunshine or under the umbrellas and chatted enthusiastically as the tasty pub-style meals arrived – which everyone enjoyed. It was all very enjoyable. Our Classic and Sports-cars have brought together a great band of enthusiasts who socialise really well together.
Matt the ‘Brewer’ gave some history of the building. Howlers is in the historic old ES&A Bank building built in 1929 with quality materials – which is why it is still so good today. It was merged with the ANZ bank in 1970 and operated for many years, but has more recently been vacant for some time. Matt and his team renovated the building and opened-up exactly 2 years ago with their own Boutique Beers and Ciders (brewed offsite). The on-site Brewery at the rear will hopefully open-up within the next few weeks. Apparently the 2 major breweries make it very difficult for micro-breweries, so many are banding together for support.
Many of their beers and ciders (which are preservative free) were sampled by the group, and were proclaimed to be top-notch. Many members took some bottles home with them!
Sadly, this was the last midweek drive until we are through the Winter. We were lucky to have such a perfect sunny and warm Autumn day which will see us though until the next event.
Thanks again to John for his efforts throughout the year and a wonderful day.
Submitted by Marja and Richard Morgan with some additional info and photos from John Fowler