The Gellibrand River Hotel

We chance upon the sleepy little timber town of Gellibrand and stop for lunch at the Gellibrand River Hotel. It’s a case of kick the dogs out of the way to get to the tables, but I guess that’s country pubs. There has been a pub on this site since 1898. This area once boasted a narrow gauge railway to haul timber down from the Otways. There is a photo on the wall of a hollow tree trunk so large that several men and a horse are standing inside it! The butt of one felled tree was so large that it was used as a grandstand at the local sportsground and in fact in the early 1900’s the visiting Victorian Governor and his official party danced the quadrille on it. Now that’s a tree.The pub menu lists many variations of parmagiana, so we order the Gelli Schnitzel and get a meal that probably would have fed all those timber cutters and the horse. A huge schnitzel covered in avocado slices, melted cheese and a Hollandaise sauce along with a salad and chips on the side. Arriving with the meal was a small fox terrier that proceeded to stare up at me pleadingly until I eventually relented and gave him a chip, at which he turned up his nose and left. Obviously a meat eater.

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