Bendooley Estate

4.5
411 reviews
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$40 and under
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Australian
Top tags:
  • Lunch
  • Special Occasions
  • Worth the Drive
Home to the iconic Berkelouw Book Barn, Bendooley Estate is a destination for wine and food lovers everywhere. Nestled in a truly magnificent rural and vineyard setting just outside Berrima, it is the Highlands most beautiful venue for a relaxed coffee, book-browsing, wine-tasting or a delicious lunch experience. With historic cool-climate gardens adjoining our lakeside pavilion, the Estate is also Australia’s premier destination for elegant Barn weddings.
From the stunning stone Cellar Door, to the rustic yet elegant Book Barn housing our restaurant and bookshop, we invite you to experience the beauty and first-class hospitality of Bendooley Estate.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Australian, Winery
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Hours of Operation
Bookstore 9AM – 5pm

Coffee & Cake from 10am

Lunch Weekdays from 12pm & Weekends from 11.30am

*Please note that due to weddings and other events taking place in the Book Barn, our closing time may vary. When visiting the estate please feel free to contact us prior to your arrival to check the scheduled closing time.
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Phone number
(02) 4877 2235
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Payment Options:
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress Code
Smart Casual
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Executive Chef
Benn Troy
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Neighbourhood
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Parking Details
On Site parking
Additional
Beer, Cocktails, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Outdoor dining , Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 411 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
Food
4.4
Service
4.6
Ambience
4.2
Value
Noise · Moderate
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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TM
2 reviews
5.0Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We had a great lunch in front of the best open fire. It was so perfect.

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DB
1 review
4.0Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4Food 5Service 2Ambience 5

The food and overall experience was enjoyable. Service was pretty slow and when they did bring our wine they didn’t pour it which was a bit odd.
There was a wedding taking place on the afternoon we were there. We had a late lunch booking so it would have been nice to know when we arrived that we had to leave by 4pm. We weren’t able to have desert and felt a bit rushed out the door

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PC
1 review
5.0Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Always a favourite lunch spot with our 2 pups Sooty & Sandy as there is cozy outdoor seating with gas heater AND a real log fireplace too! Mark the host is always welcoming as well. Thank you!

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JM
1 review
5.0Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great food and wine tasting. Wines are fantastic too. Well worth s visit!

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DD
2 reviews
5.0Dined on 12 September 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Bendooley is, and has always been, an excellent dining experience in a beautiful rustic environment reminiscent of Tuscany. The service and food never fails in my experience. It’s a great place to take visitors to the southern highlands for a long relaxing and thoroughly enjoyable meal.

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OT
1 review
5.0Dined on 9 September 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We love and totally enjoyed dining at Bendooley we love the atmosphere and surroundings and food was enjoyable
Our waitress was friendly and helpful

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x
1 review
5.0Dined on 8 September 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We had a lovely afternoon for our friend's 50th birthday. Food delicious and service amazing. Thank you!

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RD
1 review
5.0Dined on 8 September 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

A great atmosphere, wonderful wines and terrific menu sitting alongside the roaring fire.. and surrounded by books... what more could you want. Loved it.

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L
1 review
5.0Dined on 4 September 2018
Overall 5Food 4Service 4Ambience 5

I had lunch by myself there. The restaurant manager (male) made me feel extremely comfortable, service was great.

The young wait staff on the other hand, polite but need to work on their customer service skills. The young waiter kind of just dropped my plate down on the table without even looking at me and just walked off as she handed it to me. A simple smile or effort to say “enjoy your meal” would have been better. I don’t really feel like there was much care factor by the young staff. I had to look around a bit and prompt the girls to get the bill for me, they weren’t paying attention and were just chatting amongst eachother. Telling one another “I need to talk to you later”. They didn’t pay any attention to me, so I ended up askin the gentleman for the bill.

The cellar door was great. Very busy and understaffed as someone had called in sick. Perhaps more staff on would have made the service that much better. The young girl working the bar did her best to cater to all. She was very very friendly. I was there to purchase wine, if there was more time spent on me I would have purchased more. I left with 6 bottles. Just wish there was more staff on hand.

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SC
1 review
5.0Dined on 1 September 2018
Overall 5Food 4Service 4Ambience 5

This is my second time to Bendooley in recent months and I absolutely love it! Highly recommend the blue cheese pizza and glass of cab sav. I also relaxed in the cellar door before my lunch reservation and enjoyed tasting a handful of wines from the cellar door.

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B
4 reviews
4.0Dined on 31 August 2018
Overall 4Food 3Service 4Ambience 5

Had a lovely lunch here on Friday. Menu options limited though. Service was great. Ambience was fabulous. The open fires and being surrounded by books whilst dining was very special.

The linguine was very nice as was the chicken burger although the current fashion in most restaurants for brioche bread rolls for burgers is not to my liking. However, the chicken and coleslaw was delicious and we didn’t need the buns anyway. Servings are generous but not inexpensive.

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ED
1 review
5.0Dined on 26 August 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

What a lovely way to wrap up a weekend in Canberra on our way back to Sydney. It was just lovely!

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GD
1 review
2.0Dined on 26 August 2018
Overall 2Food 3Service 2Ambience 2

As the place is vast, it lacked ambience. Service was attentive but hurried, given the place was busy. I asked for a candle to be placed on the desert as we were celebrating someone’s birthday but this was forgotten. Food was good but not enough to make our dining experience special and not enough to warrant a return

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VS
1 review
4.0Dined on 25 August 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 3Ambience 5

Really loved the food and the atmosphere as did my family. It was busy and our waitress forgot a few things like refilling the water bottle upon request but all in all it was a wonderful lunch.

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G
1 review
4.0Dined on 25 August 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 2Ambience 4

Lovely spot, good food and fair portions. Service could be better with attention to providing water (we had to ask for this) and fill our own wines and chase bill.
Also wanted to buy from cellar door, but was originally charged in restaurant prices, and I felt the staff didn’t know how to organise that, until they found the ladie specifically for the cellar door.

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T
1 review
5.0Dined on 24 August 2018
Overall 5Food 3Service 3Ambience 5

Under staffed...2 persons serving, take orders n doing wine tasting too.
Would be good to allow purchased bottled wine to serve at table. Some
Tables too clean sed to each other.

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SW
1 review
4.0Dined on 22 August 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 5

Even though we asked for the starter/side dish to be brought out before the main, they arrived at the same time. This always happens for some reason which is why we made a specific point to mention it when ordering. Otherwise it was an enjoyable dining experience as always.

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CO
1 review
5.0Dined on 20 August 2018
Overall 5Food 4Service 5Ambience 5

We had a wonderful stay, visually spectacular, peaceful, relaxing. Accomodation excellent, cottages spacious, beautifully designed and decorated. Also very warm and cosy during a very cold 2 day stay. Staff very accomodating.
Only problem, TV kept turning itself off so had to keep the remote on your lap.
Would come again!

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LS
1 review
3.0Dined on 18 August 2018
Overall 3Food 5Service 3Ambience 3

The food is very good but it is a long wait as they are so busy and so many tables

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RG
1 review
5.0Dined on 18 August 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

A great venue for a casual lunch - service was efficient and friendly, food was of good quality, the unique situation adds novelty and interest, being able to browse the books between courses. Definitely recommended.

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BO
1 review
2.0Dined on 17 August 2018
Overall 2Food 2Service 3Ambience 5

Cold food and cold venue. Friendly staff but not enough staff in the peak period. Asked to sit near fire but were denied. Food looked pretty, the quality was good but it was cold. The grounds and venue are lovely.

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NC
1 review
4.0Dined on 16 August 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

My wife, son and I had lunch at Bendooley's during the week. We were met buy a very plesant matrade.
The table service was good and the watress was able to explain various items and requests of the menu.
The food arrived in a timely manner and was of a high quality. However, after our main dishers were finished we appeared to be a bit over looked and had to try to catch the eye of one of the waiters to order our deserts. This was not a huge issue but let down an other wise very good service.
Our only other issue was that we were seated next to a large table that had young families and the small children were quite loud and got bored with their situation. This spoilt what could have been a much more intimate lunch.

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OT
1 review
4.0Dined on 11 August 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 3Ambience 3

Saturday lunch with a friend. Restaurant was incredibly busy, normal for weekends. We had made a booking 2 weeks in advance, a little disappointed to find that we were given a window table with blinding glare from the afternoon sun - really one of the worst tables in the house for the time of day. The noise was so loud in the glass room we literally couldn't hear each other talk. Then the two tables around us were served before us even though we'd arrived before them.

Once we were served though, it all got much better. Pre-lunch cocktails were a tad slow but the place was very busy and they were really well made and delicious when they did arrive. Food was very quick and really enjoyable, we had a selection of the entrees and a pizza and shared everything. The standouts for me were the heirloom carrots and the cured trout, my friend loved the ricotta parfait the best.

Once the afternoon lunch rush started to quieten down the lovely afternoon sun provided a sparkling backdrop to the procession of well-to-do wedding guests heading up the country lane to a ceremony being held on site.

The restaurant is vast, atmospheric, and very beautiful - right there in the middle of the vines, and the views are gorgeous. We left after our long lunch very relaxed and very happy with the food - turned out to be a great table for people watching after all.

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KS
1 review
4.0Dined on 11 August 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

The beautiful setting, and delicious food and wine choices thoroughly allowed our extended family to celebrate 2 birthdays, a retirement and a new beginning. This destination was perfect for us to just stop, relax and enjoy each others company. Our waitress was exceptionally attentive, remembering everything. The only suggestion to the chef would be to reintroduce the chicken liver pate on the Deli Board. Thank you for creating this wonderful ambience.

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J
1 review
2.0Dined on 11 August 2018
Overall 2Food 4Service 1Ambience 4

The food and setting was nice but the service was awful. We had to ask them a number of times as they forgot one of the mains, coffee, sides, sauce, water and took forever to serve us. They also were not at all apologetic when we kept having to follow them up.

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PM
1 review
4.0Dined on 10 August 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

Went there for lunch for my wife's birthday. The atmosphere is good with the books surrounding the restaurant. New and second hand books for sale, we bought a couple of new books. Had pizza and some sides, the pizza was thin and crispy, my wife like sit that way but I would prefer it to be thin and soft. Pizzas are well priced at $25, the sides were priced too high at about $19 each for a quite small plate of veggies. Had a Bendooley Semillon which was pretty good and later bought a bottle from the tasting room.

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VC
1 review
5.0Dined on 10 August 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Highly recommended.
Ticks all the boxes.
Thank you once again.
Plus you can browse through and purchase some awesome books..
Will be back....

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JC
1 review
5.0Dined on 9 August 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

The food was amazing, and the restaurant setting was incredible. Absolutely loved it!

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AF
1 review
5.0Dined on 7 August 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

A cosy venue (especially next to the fireplace) that beckons you to return. So, pop in for a coffee, or a woodfire pizza, and browse the bookshelves. A lovely way to spend the afternoon.

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PC
1 review
5.0Dined on 4 August 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

The meal we had was lovely and the Pizza was big enough for the two of us.
Great atmosphere and cosy by the fire (one of many)
The Book Barn adds another level with people gazing through the library of books ... I even went home with one.
Had the time and position to watch wedding guests arrive to the nearby function centre ... good to see what everybody was wearing!

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DD
1 review
4.0Dined on 4 August 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 3

This is a fabulous restaurant and we eat here every time we visit the Southern Highlands. The food, service and atmosphere are always good. The only disappointment this time is that we were given a table in the full sun and while it was cold and windy outside, it was just too hot sitting in the full sun and unable to move in any way to get out of the sun. Despite removing as many layers of clothing as I could, it really spoilt the meal and I wont sit at that table again. I will insist on moving to a different table out of the full sun where I dont have to wear sun glasses and get so hot.

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OK
1 review
5.0Dined on 2 August 2018
Overall 5Food 3Service 4Ambience 5

Great lunch, devastated the chocolate fondant is off the menu & miss the prawn pasta but still a wonderful lunch. Definitely need something more exciting on the dessert menu we tried one of everything and nothing really stood out.

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K
1 review
2.0Dined on 31 July 2018
Overall 2Food 2Service 2Ambience 4

First time I went there, the waitress did not have a pen or paper to write down our order. We received our entree fast, but it took over 1 hour to revieve our mains. She did offer us a complimentary coke for the inconvenience but waiting over a hour for a main when the restaurant only had about 4-5 people sitting down, was a bit ridiculous. The mains weren’t really all that good I felt there was no effort put into our meal. it wasn’t really pleasant to eat. I would recommend the place for people to come and eat cheese and wine by the fire but that would be it .

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CW
1 review
5.0Dined on 30 July 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Lovely food friendly staff beautiful setting. Been here many times with different people and Iv'e never been disappointed yet. 10 out of 10.

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RM
1 review
5.0Dined on 29 July 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Such a beautiful setting, and the book barn has a great atmosphere. Was great to browse the gorgeous books while waiting for our booking, it was such a nice relaxed afternoon. The food was delicious too!

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DH
1 review
5.0Dined on 28 July 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 5

Always a treat to dine here. Love it! Looking forward to a return visit.

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AP
1 review
4.0Dined on 27 July 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 2Ambience 3

Lovely setting for lunch. The food was very good -our mains being a pasta dish and barramundi on risotto with cheese platter and parfait for dessert. Our waiter seemed rather rushed and somewhat unfriendly and disinterested. We still had a pleasant meal in nice surroundings but without the service we had anticipated.

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NT
1 review
5.0Dined on 22 July 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Went for Sunday lunch. We don't eat meat which limited the options but our entrees and mains were great. The desserts look really interesting but we were too full to try them. The bookshop inside the restaurant is unusual put very impressive.

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BM
1 review
3.0Dined on 22 July 2018
Overall 3Food 2Service 3Ambience 4

A very busy restaurant that probably could have done with several more wait staff to help service the floor. The staff were run off their feet.

Food was good, not outstanding in our tables opinion. Certainly not for the price charged. Still very lovely and I guess it’s the setting that really adds to the appeal.

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VB
1 review
5.0Dined on 22 July 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 5

Sunday lunch yesterday was superb. Great menu at the moment. We enjoyed the Duck Rague, Crab Linguine and Toulouse Sausage for mains

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