Bendooley Estate Book Barn
Bendooley Estate Book Barn
4
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
About
This grand estate is a spectacular destination within the Southern Highlands. Explore the iconic Berkelouw Book Barn. Dine at Bendooley’s restaurant. Stay in luxurious cottages within the beautifully preserved 200-acre property.
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  • Victoria
    Sydney, Australia343 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Wonderful Location, Delicious Food but Super Noisy
    I've been going down to the Southern Highlands from Sydney for a number of years because I have a very good friend living there and Bendooley Estate has been one of our favourites amongst the plethora of fabulous restaurants and wineries around the region. I have just come back from living in the UK for a few years and this was my first visit here since 2018. It has never disappointed, although we have certainly noticed how it has developed massively over the years. We used to eat in the main room with books surrounding us which was quite delightful but this time we were seated in a side room with a huge fire in the centre and a bar, still quite gorgeous. There is also another separate restaurant adjacent to this. The food has always been superb here as has the service but it is a huge place now and weddings are obviously taking priority in the late Saturday afternoons. I was told they are now going to build a hotel or extra accommodation, not sure if that info is correct as of this writing. This is a great venue for families but it is hard to have a conversation here without the noise becoming all consuming if you want a quiet lunch with your loved one! There are beautiful fields around, although I never saw the cows this visit! There is also plenty of parking. As an aside, another of my fav restaurants, Crafted By Matt Moran, at the Art Gallery Of NSW is another place that has become even more unbearably noisy and is extremely difficult to have a relaxing lunch with friends...but I digress, my apologies. The only glitch was at the end of our lunch, we could see the staff becoming frantic because everything and everyone had to go by around 2:30/3pm in readiness for the wedding. The main restaurant was cleared quite fast and the tables were all set up but unfortunately we lost out lovely waitress and an 'assertive' young lady began serving us and other tables in our section. I asked her for the rest of our pizza to be put into a container to take home, just like the box the previous waitress had done to our huge starter. Anyhow she came back and almost threw the plastic container on the table and rushed off, she also did the same to the table of 6 beside us. I actually went up to them and mentioned it as they were sitting there wide eyed and with a collection of plastic containers on their table as well. They also remarked about the change of service and how abrupt she was. I saw her later rushing around. I'm sorry but this is a service industry and waitering staff have to be polite and helpful regardless, unless patrons are rude that is. It was disappointing to have that at the finish of our lovely day, but I still highly recommend this gorgeous place. All my photos were taken after lunch to avoid people eating and privacy so they only show the wedding set up and not the restaurant in use. It was extremely packed.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 2 September 2023
  • Alison K
    10 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Daughter’s wedding was amazing
    Wow! Everything about my daughter’s wedding in the book barn was perfect. The ceremony was managed by a great man… Mark. The ceremony garden was absolutely beautiful. The food at the lake was exceptional. The reception was fantastic with great food that was hot and plentiful. If you are thinking of having a wedding at this venue … do it. You will love it.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 25 November 2023
  • Catherine B
    Gerringong, Australia9 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Casual dining in a delightful winery.
    We had a lovely lunch at the Book Barn accompanied by a beautiful glass of Pinot Noir. The only thing that I could say was not quite right was the mountain of salad greens which I ordered as a side and ended up sharing and the quail being a tad on the dry side. Otherwise a lovely casual lunch venue. The wine tasting room and ambience of that space was really nice especially on a cold day. The crackling fire, cosy room and attentive service were delightful. If I visit again, I’ll go straight to the tasting room and try a few wines alongside a cheese plate which I saw a few people enjoying.
    Visited June 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 21 June 2024
  • Dumby The Donkey
    Dangar Island, Australia6 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing food and books
    My family stopped at the Book Barn for lunch during a road trip to Canberra, we enjoyed a delicious pizza and flat bread, along with great service and friendly staff. The books were all well arranged and marked, and I had barely any trouble finding specific genres. I wanted to read pretty much every book there just to see what was in it, but limited myself to just two: one from a series that I have been missing for ages, and a book about birds by David Attenborough, because why not. We hope to be back again soon.
    Visited July 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 12 July 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles284 reviews
Excellent
154
Very good
73
Average
23
Poor
16
Terrible
18

Ian M
Bathurst, Australia1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2021 • Couples
My partner is a book fanatic and has been wanting to come here for a very long time. We decided to come to the book store on a weekend away. We arrived at 3.40pm on a Sunday (with service in the restaurant to cease at 4pm and we know the time we arrived due to signing in because of COVID-19). As I don’t have a passion for books I decided to order myself a coffee to drink while I wait for my better half to finish her browsing and potential purchase of a significant amount of books.

I was told that service had closed, of which I could except if it was not for the table behind me being served. When I asked why they are being served when I was unable to order a coffee I was told “it’s because they have been here all day”!

Terrible service, thank god my partner put all the books back that she was going to purchase. Extremely disappointed and will let others know of the discriminatory service (picking and choosing customers).

Written 3 January 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

sunnysab
Sydney, Australia311 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2020
Located in the Southern Highlands, the drive to get there is already beautiful. We had lunch at the Bendooley Estate and it was delicious. The restaurant is in an actual library where you can look through books and buy one is you fancy. There are two fireplaces, gorgeous views and the food is great too. We tried a few things off the menu and I can't fault anything. A visit to remember and I'll definitely be going there again.
Written 19 July 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Hawkeye4077
Maitland, Australia547 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
An absolute fabulous venue for those special occasions. Having canapés by the lake or strolling around the historic gardens; enjoying a tasting in the cellar bar or a full menu in the Book Barn, Bendooley does it so well.
A great team of staff work quietly and unobtrusively around you so that you event is perfect. Look forward to returning one day just as a tourist.
Written 14 June 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

westy54
Sydney, Australia12,210 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2021
My wife had been keen to visit here to peruse the books, which were plentiful both new and second hand. We arrived at 11.20am on a Friday morning and decided to have a coffee first.

We asked a lady who appeared to be in charge of setting up for the lunch service who said no problem, just go around the corner and find a table that is not set for lunch.

No problem until we went to the counter to order our coffees from the young lady who was already making coffees for someone else. Her response "sorry I can't help you as we are getting ready for the lunch service" which I noted started at 11.30am. When I mentioned that the lady at the entry had said no problem she rolled her eyes and reluctantly agreed to take the order.

We shouldn't have bothered. Coffee was pretty ordinary.

The restaurant, however, was fairly heavily patronised by the time we left (after looking at the books) but I doubt if we will be back.
Written 20 February 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Victoria
Sydney, Australia343 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023 • Friends
I've been going down to the Southern Highlands from Sydney for a number of years because I have a very good friend living there and Bendooley Estate has been one of our favourites amongst the plethora of fabulous restaurants and wineries around the region.

I have just come back from living in the UK for a few years and this was my first visit here since 2018. It has never disappointed, although we have certainly noticed how it has developed massively over the years. We used to eat in the main room with books surrounding us which was quite delightful but this time we were seated in a side room with a huge fire in the centre and a bar, still quite gorgeous. There is also another separate restaurant adjacent to this.

The food has always been superb here as has the service but it is a huge place now and weddings are obviously taking priority in the late Saturday afternoons. I was told they are now going to build a hotel or extra accommodation, not sure if that info is correct as of this writing. This is a great venue for families but it is hard to have a conversation here without the noise becoming all consuming if you want a quiet lunch with your loved one! There are beautiful fields around, although I never saw the cows this visit! There is also plenty of parking.

As an aside, another of my fav restaurants, Crafted By Matt Moran, at the Art Gallery Of NSW is another place that has become even more unbearably noisy and is extremely difficult to have a relaxing lunch with friends...but I digress, my apologies.

The only glitch was at the end of our lunch, we could see the staff becoming frantic because everything and everyone had to go by around 2:30/3pm in readiness for the wedding. The main restaurant was cleared quite fast and the tables were all set up but unfortunately we lost out lovely waitress and an 'assertive' young lady began serving us and other tables in our section. I asked her for the rest of our pizza to be put into a container to take home, just like the box the previous waitress had done to our huge starter. Anyhow she came back and almost threw the plastic container on the table and rushed off, she also did the same to the table of 6 beside us. I actually went up to them and mentioned it as they were sitting there wide eyed and with a collection of plastic containers on their table as well. They also remarked about the change of service and how abrupt she was. I saw her later rushing around.
I'm sorry but this is a service industry and waitering staff have to be polite and helpful regardless, unless patrons are rude that is.
It was disappointing to have that at the finish of our lovely day, but I still highly recommend this gorgeous place.

All my photos were taken after lunch to avoid people eating and privacy so they only show the wedding set up and not the restaurant in use. It was extremely packed.

Written 3 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

dbl201
Palm Beach, Australia69 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2020
Used to be a charming place to visit, now a crowded and highly commercialised place with very poor service. Staffed by young kids with no idea of what they are doing. Luckily We decided to only have a coffee and cake, but even that was not up to standard, after a long wait cold coffee was put on our table, another long wait for a very stale cake. Browsed through the book shelves (highly reduced to make room for tables) and tried to get some answers from staff, but... I was obviously asking too much.
Written 20 November 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Joanne P
5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2020
Enjoyed a wonderful lunch at Book Barn. Great food and professional and attentive service in a unique setting that combines a bookshop within a vineyard. Less than 10 minutes drive from Bowral, lunch at Bendooley Estate Book Barn is a very worthy experience in the Southern Highlands.
Written 28 July 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

OttersTrotters
At my desk788 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2021
Everything you could ever want it here. I wanted to try something new and Jess really took time to suggest all sorts of options. I'm loving my new books.
Written 21 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rainbow T
86 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2021 • Family
This is a very nice book shop that you can find hidden treasures. Like the environment and you will find one book at least to relax for an afternoon. Outdoor is beautiful, we did not dine there bc they need to prepare wedding. It is a nice place to visit.
Written 12 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dumby The Donkey
Dangar Island, Australia6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2024 • Family
My family stopped at the Book Barn for lunch during a road trip to Canberra, we enjoyed a delicious pizza and flat bread, along with great service and friendly staff. The books were all well arranged and marked, and I had barely any trouble finding specific genres. I wanted to read pretty much every book there just to see what was in it, but limited myself to just two: one from a series that I have been missing for ages, and a book about birds by David Attenborough, because why not. We hope to be back again soon.
Written 12 July 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Bendooley Estate Book Barn - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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