PROFILE BY BEST RESTAURANTS
Shrouded in ferns with views onto the Jameson Valley, The Conservation Hut is many things to many people. It's a relaxed, fantastically out-of-the-way place to have coffee and cake, it's the reward at the end of the demanding National Pass walk and it's a great place to indulge in modern Australian cuisine while being a part of the mountains. Although the current hut – a structure of wood and stone, with a fabulous wooden verandah – was established in 1993 as a cafe, it has a history dating back to 1963 when a smaller hut stood in its place, largely concerning itself with conservation. Although now a meeting point for tourists, besotted couples and hungry families, The Conservation Hut has not let go of its past. You can read about local conservation efforts, endangered wildlife, unique Australian flora and the Blue Mountains environment in its foyer.
Inside, the cafe is made up of a large room with a high ceiling, a fireplace (which roars in wintertime) and two large mosaic-like artworks. There are also plenty of culinary distractions – like a gleaming counter filled with cakes, a discreet ice-cream bar and a modern Australian menu. On the verandah, ferns, trees, the Jameson Valley and the mountain air work as amiable dining companions. The lunch and dinner menu represents a selection of meals that range from entrees like goat's cheese, caramelised onion and tomato tart to heartier options like fettuccine bolognaise, pumpkin risotto and roast lamb rump for mains. There is also a range of breakfasts for early birds (as well as coffee, for the not-so-good in the morning). Aside from being a lovely spot to enjoy the beauty of the mountains, The Conservation Hut also provides information about local walks and lookouts and is a great starting point for Blue Mountains exploration.