All of a sudden it’s mid-February and Relaxed Racing has kicked off for 2016! Last week I shared an introduction post, on how to have some serious trackside fun across some of my favourite racing venues in Victoria – the feature dates to mark in your diaries, as well as some fashion and food tips. The events truly are a casual, fun and entertaining way to enjoy the races over the summer and autumn seasons. They are both family-friendly and also a great place to hang out with friends.
Today I’ve teamed up with Relaxed Racing again, to bring you a guide on how to plan the perfect day out at the races. We’re also giving you a chance to win tickets to Blue Diamond Stakes Day, but I’ll get to that later.
First things first… Planning a great day out at Relaxed Racing!
A day at Relaxed Racing extends further than just some trackside fun. There’s nothing better than enjoying a meal and some drinks with your friends and family before or after a race day.
Below are the events I’m counting down to on the Relaxed Racing calendar and some of my favourite dining destinations to complete the perfect day out at the races.
Blue Diamond Stakes Day
Saturday 27 February
The South-Eastern suburbs of Melbourne are home to many of my favourite food haunts. The best known strip in the area would without doubt be Chapel Street, one of the most iconic dining and entertainment precincts outside of the CDB. Chapel Street is about a 10 minute drive from the track, so jump in a cab or an Uber with friends if you don’t have a designated driver and enjoy some of the best restaurants, bars and pub-food you’ll find in Australia.
Hawker Hall is an amazing new foodie hub which opened its doors at the end of last year. This seriously cool food and beer hall takes its inspiration from the vibrant Hawker Centres of the Asian countries of Singapore and Malaysia. Home to amazing noodles, curries, stir-fries and a changing beers on-tap selection, eating at the Hall promises the fun of eating in a true hawker market in a relaxed atmosphere. Allow plenty of time, because it’s a walk-in restaurant with a chef’s table available for lunch or dinner group bookings (for 10-12) on the set Hawker Feast menu.
98 Chapel St, Windsor
William Hill Alister Clark Stakes
Moonee Valley Racecourse
Friday 18 March
The Valley Racecourse is located in Moonee Ponds, 6km from the Melbourne CBD. Because of its close proximity to the metropolitan hub, you can pretty much dine anywhere in the city and head to or from the track in under a 20 minute drive.
Ascot Food Store
For the ultimate pre-races brunch, head to Acsot Food Store. It takes Melbourne Girls love of ‘Doughnuts for Breakfast’ to a whole new level. If you are not a sweet tooth, be sure to try the Eggs Benny with Pulled Pork or the Boiled Eggs with Brioche Soldiers, complete with a morning kick-starter coffee. The lobster burger is also a serious winner! Enjoy the great casual atmosphere, fantastic staff and delicious food and coffee to get you into the Relaxed Racing vibe.
320 Ascot Vale Road, Moonee Ponds
Jack Hirsch Memorial Yarra Valley Cup
Yarra Valley Racecourse
Sunday 20 March
Yarra Valley Racecourse is located at Yarra Glen, just under an hours drive from Melbourne. The Yarra Valley is famous for indulgent food and wine, best known for eateries hidden among the vines and a fantastic range of cellar doors.
This restaurant and wine bar in Healesville is the perfect all day dining destination. Enjoy a pre-races Moscato or Pinot Noir and the best cheese platter you’ll find in greater-Melbourne. Or if you make plans to head after the final race, be sure to treat yourself with their freshly shucked oysters and mushroom pizza – they are my favourites for dinner. It’s a 15 minute drive or bus ride to the track, my tip is to make a booking because they are always busy on the weekends.
336 Maroondah Hwy, Healesville
Saturday 2 March
Heading North-West to one of Melbourne’s most famous racecourses means a cultural sea change when you enter the suburb of Flemington. Racecourse Road and Pin Oak Crescent are home to an eclectic range of delicious, cheap eats which are all perfect for pre or post meals when you make a day of going to the races on Super Saturday.
6-12 Pin Oak Cres, Flemington
Mornington Cup Day
Saturday 2 April
Mornington is an easy 45 minute drive from Melbourne and is situated at the gateway to the beautiful Mornington Peninsula. The Peninsula is famous for its abundant wine, the freshest produce and restaurants serving unforgettable meals.
DOC Pizza & Mozzarella Bar
What better way to kick start or finish a day of Relaxed Racing than with a bite and bevvie from DOC Pizza & Mozzarella Bar. Dine in their casual dining room and enjoy gourmet wood-fired pizza, antipasto and Italian salads, complete with a selection of Italian and local wine and beers. My pick of the menu is the tiger prawn pizza or lasagne, teamed with a refreshing Aperol Spritz (or 2).
22 Main St, Mornington
For more great eats and drinks in and around the most liveable city in the world ‘Melbourne’, be sure to check out our Best Eats page here.
Blue Diamond Stakes Day Giveaway
Blue Diamond Stakes Day at Caulfield Racecourse on Saturday 27 February is the place to be with friends and family to farewell an amazing summer in Melbourne. A highlight of the Relaxed Racing calendar, Blue Diamond Stakes Day is best spent kicking back and relaxing on the Dilmah Summer Lawn, enjoying a beer from the Crown Golden Ale Bar or a cocktail from the Dilmah Summer Lawn bar.
Win tickets for you + 3 friends to attend Blue Diamond Stakes Day
For your chance to win 4 x general admission tickets to Blue Diamond Stakes Day at Caulfield Racecourse on Saturday 27 February, tell us in the comments below…
“Where you would go for the best eats and drinks in Melbourne before or after you hit the track for the ultimate Relaxed Racing day out”?
Complete any entry options which appeal to you for extra chances! These are not mandatory, please note that by leaving your answer in the comments below, you automatically go into the draw!
Open to all residents of Victoria aged 18 years and older. Entries open until 9pm – Wednesday 24 February, 2016. The lucky winner will be contacted via entering email and announced in the comments below.
The prize is not transferable, exchangeable, or redeemable for cash or kind and must be taken as offered. The prize is for 4 general admission passes only and does not include food, drink and transport to and from the event. If the winner (for whatever reason) does not accept the prize or is unable to accept the prize, it will be forfeited.
Good Luck everyone!
For more Relaxed Racing information or to buy tickets, head over to the #RelaxedRacing Digital Hub. You’ll find the full event calendar, fashion tips, hospitality options, food and entertainment information, family attendance options as well as some more competitions and promotions.
See you all trackside!
This post is brought to you by Nuffnang and Relaxed Racing.