Winter’s finally packed up its things and moved onto greener pastures, which means it’s time to dust off those floppy hats because the spring wine season is here. In honour of the most wonderful time of the year, we’ve rustled up some of Victoria’s best wineries (all with cracker restaurants) so you can start planning your spring getaway ASAP.
Polperro is the perfect destination winery for a spring weekend getaway. The single label vineyard doesn’t just make and sell bottles of the good stuff, it also has a cellar door, bistro, yoga classes and some of the most luxurious accommodation on the Peninsula. You can pop in for a wine tasting, or stay for lunch, they can even organise a picnic by their on-site lake for you if you’re feeling a lil’ bit romantic.
Montalto Vineyard & Olive Grove
Red Hill South
While you’re in the area, you’d be bonkers not to drop in to Montalto. This sprawling winery triples as a world-class restaurant and art gallery as well. The grounds are filled with exceptional sculptural masterpieces and the tables in the restaurant and cafe are filled with the freshest local produce sourced onsite and in the surrounding area. They also offer private picnic packages in the grounds that are a fab idea for a ritzy birthday treat or even if you’re looking for a noice, different, unusual but bloody beautiful setting to pop the question.
Port Phillip Estate
Red Hill South
Not only is the Port Phillip Estate an architectural landmark on the Mornington Peninsula, but it’s also one of the most highly regarded food and wine destinations in the whole damn country. Aside from the whole place being very easy on the eye and damn good at producing a good drop, but it also offers world class contemporary cuisine at its on-site Dining Room and highly informative (and highly delicious) wine tastings as its elegant tasting bar in the Cellar Door. If you aren’t wearing your fanciest pants then you can even drop into their Cellar Door Kitchen for a casual bite to eat overlooking their jaw dropping panoramic views.
Jackelope is first and foremost known for its crazy fancy accommodation, but it also has an on-site vineyard which has built a name for itself as one of the premier wineries on the Mornington Peninsula. And, like we’ve discovered already, a great winery usually means a ripper restaurant and Jackelope is no different. Their on-property winery restaurant celebrates the region’s roots and plates up dishes made from the Peninsula’s best wines, food, and fresh produce, all enjoyed with some stellar vineyard views.
It’s as if one of the hard and fast criteria of a modern winery is that it has to be as structurally delicious as the wine it produces, because Oakridge Wines is yet another winery with some phenomenal architecture. Aside from their ripper buildings, you can enjoy a lunch of dishes like kangaroo rump with native fruits and garden greens in their on-site restaurant or you can be taken on a journey through their delicious wines via a complimentary tasting at their cellar door.
Just down the road from Oakridge Wines is Levantine Hill—another breathtaking winery with a cracker restaurant primed for a fancy lunch. If you’ve never heard of Ezard, then you’ve been living under a rock at the back of a Maccas, because Ezard is a gastronomic, vinophillic and avant-garde paradise. If you’re someone who likes to pair their lunch with incredible wines, delicious views and breathtaking architecture, then Levantine Hill needs to be at the top of your list.
If rolling hills layered in stunning vineyards is your cup of tea, then give your mug a quick rinse because you’ll want to visit Giant Steps. Perched in the Yarra Valley, this single range vineyard plays host to some lip smacking chardonnays and a cellar door and restaurant loaded with delicious dishes playing tribute to some of the finest ingredients available both locally and abroad.
Founded in 1889, Brown Brothers' name is synonymous with wine in Victoria, and has Australia's largest range of varietal wines—some that are only available exclusively via the Brown Brothers cellar door. As well as sampling some of Victoria's finest vino, you can also hoe into a delicious feast at in-house restaurant, Patricia's Table.
While not a purveyor of the classic savvy b—Dal Zotto make an absolutely mean prosecco that is well worth whiling a spring afternoon with. Boasting wonderful views, a cellar door, and an Italian restaurant—Dal Zotto needs to be on your list if you find yourself in the vicinity of the King Valley.
If you're out an about seeing the sights of Victoria this spring don't miss all of the secret gardens that are at your doorstep. Find out all about them here.
Image credit: Montalto | Griffin Simm