Success is getting what you want; happiness is liking what you get

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A little bit of Scotland in Masterton

It was a lovely day for a trip over the Rimutaka Hill to the Wairarapa.  The earthworks were coming along quite well on the hill road, with heavy machinery still very much in evidence.  We were carefully shepherded over a couple of newly completed sections of the road, but there is still quite a bit of work to do before this big engineering job is completed. 
DSCF7036Ongoing work on the Rimutaka Hill road
The reason for our trip today was to check out and make bookings at a couple of motor camps for our caravan club rally schedule.  But as we found out, things often don’t go to plan, and we had to return to one camp twice before we had everything organised.  We noticed lots of new lambs in a paddock as we were driving around, including several sets of twins.  Surely it can’t be Spring already?
DSCF7035  Mum and her twins
We came across a little bit of Scotland on State Highway 2, just north of Masterton, “Wee Red Barn” had been featured on the programme “Country Calendar” on TV recently.  Alan (Scottish) and his wife Dot (Kiwi) came over from Scotland to run their fruit growing business in Opaki, Masterton.  The resident goat looked quite comfy as he relaxed in the sunshine on top of his house.
DSCF7015  The welcoming committee
DSCF7023 The Wee Red Barn
The Wee Red Barn sells berries grown on the property, make their own wine and jam, and also sell locally sourced veggies, fruit, and olive oil.  We bought a jar each of strawberry and blackberry jam, lovingly made by Dot, which is sure to go nicely on our breakfast toast, and  a butternut pumpkin to turn into soup.  For those Kiwis with a Scottish connection, there is a large range of Scottish themed items for sale.  Alan showed us around the back of the property and explained how he likes to grow his strawberries up off the ground at shoulder height, to allow for easier access and harvesting. 
DSCF7016 Alan with his innovative elevated strawberry beds
I just adore pigs, and was thrilled to see lots of little pink piglets running around with their big black Mother pig watching carefully over them.  Aren’t pigs just the nicest animals?  By the look of their dusty little faces and legs, the piglets have been having a fine old time rolling around in the dirt.   
DSCF7018 Here, piggy, piggy
Heading back to Masterton for lunch, we spotted a sign that gladdened the Scottish part of my heart, a 2 for 1 lunch deal - just the thing for a couple of poor old pensioners!
DSCF7025
So we went inside the Aberdeen Cafe and Bar to peruse the menu.  This grand building started life as a Masonic Lodge.  My choice was a dish of delicious baked stuffed locally grown Parkvale mushrooms served in a creamy sauce, and Robin enjoyed a large plate of pork spare ribs.  (We had intended to call in to Parkvale Mushrooms Ltd in Carterton to buy some of their mushrooms to take home, but ran out of time.  Perhaps next time we are over this way we will get there.)  Our lunch was a  great finish to our day out over the hill.
DSCF7024 Aberdeen Cafe and Bar, Masterton

1 comment:

June said...

This reminds me that its been ages since I went over the hill to Masterton. Does Parkvale still do their delicious pickled mushrooms? It is worth a trip just to taste them again.