Venturing down deep into the Peninsula, south of Mornington, you come to Rosebud. This very pretty seaside outer-suburb is extremely popular, over the Christmas break, with caravan and tent dwellers-Victorian gypsies. Rosebud TRIPLES its population at this time of the year. Stay away over the peak period and venture here any other time, winter or early spring, when it is quiet. Parking and crowds can be a problem over the Christmas hols. Santa will not gift you free parking.
Go for a Sunday (or Saturday) drive to a smart looking restaurant/hotel called ROSEgpo. This was, sometime back, the GPO for Rosebud. I know because while a Telstra employee I collected my wages here. Thank God they changed the look of the place. In fact this big cafe has had a few incarnations. The current owners have it looking good. Their music taste requires a freshen-up though. Moldy pop from the 70s, 80s, and 90s is very yesterday. The music was older than the wine I was drinking. Speaking of wine there is good selections to be had. Choose carefully to get what you want. A goodly glass is served at a reasonable price.
The surrounds are excellent and there are a number of indulgence areas. Out on the street, inside upfront or down the back or for drinks and nibbles-upstairs. For me it was the Calamari. Big, thick, lightly crumbed strips. No sign of deep frying or out of a box frozen surprises. An excellent quantity for a big eater like me. The squid proudly sits atop a layer of big fat chips from real potatoes and some rabbit food to the side. Rabbits though would have called the chef and complained. Too much oil over the greens. I'm an oil aficionado from way-back but too heavy is too much. The Tomatoes were almost transparent but now I'm getting picky.
The Calamari was excellent. These were big strips and they were tender and moreish. The SA Riesling which accompanied the sea creature was tangy and worked well with the dish. Service was fast (midweek lunch) but just a little cold. I didn't need a cuddle over lunch but " g'day" would have been nice.
Pluck up the courage and venture into the deep south of Victoria's Peninsula region. Pick the rosebud of restaurants which blooms with ambiance, good wines and ample well priced eatables from an establishment which has a real history. But your experience will be new, enjoyable and sweet smelling. A rose by any other name would be ROSEgpo. Pluck it!