Want to be clued-up on wines and cider ale? Take a weekend trip to Yarra valley. A bright sunny day is just perfect for this weekend outing. One hour away from hustle bustle of Melbourne city hit the highway and gentle slopes of Yarra valley(name derived from the Yarra river that surrounds).
Want to know your pinot noir from the Merlot? Then hit the road to the most stunning wine regions that beckon tourists and locals by the drove.
A peek to some of the sprawling farmlands and mansions of rich residents of Yarra is aspirational to great living even though tucked away from the city buzz. I skipped the luxury vineyard route, it’s awfully expensive and some of them have incredible Spa and suites option trails. A few brochures also announce hot air balloons (accompaniments of champagne and caviar on board) for somewhere around 500 Aus dollars. Yarra valley is surrounded by verdant mountains as a striking milieu, and the vineyards make this a great getaway. Extraordinarily an old brewery factory outlet was the first stop we made. The quaint interiors with huge pipes snaking through, massive barrels of steel/Copper hop kilns were so impressive. This offering of authentic surroundings was a valid reason to start our rounds with beer.
Beer is quintessential Aussie, Yarra valley in the early years was known to brew the favourite hop to perfection and maintains that position. Most of the kilns were imported all the way from Germany. Huge remnants of woodsheds can still be found and there are many beer stops, but now, vineyards have outdone the cider ale trail. At one of the craft brewery called The Barrel, freshly brewed beer was up for tasting, accompanied by great food.
Some of the best Wineries are ageless and historic, they hold sway over the other luxury and newer lot. Drive around to check out some of the local produce, home made chocolates and jams, all organic sold in backyard barns tastefully done up.
I was disappointed to go through the 5 pm curfew time and a strawberry farmland owner crisply replied that at Yarra everyone wakes up at the crack of dawn and therefore must retire early!
Chandon and Yering vineyards have breathtaking, cellar views that will forever be etched in my mind.
The weekend I travelled was crowded with happy revellers, bikers, and fast cars. Chandon driveway was like a racing track. The green landscape undulates for as far as the eyes can see.
Domain Chandon situated in the Yarra valley is more known for its bubbly. The main cellar restaurant is dome shaped and has a patio with relaxed seating to admire the direct view of distant hills and breathe in fresh mountain air. Champagne is more expensive than wine, the food was exquisite, wish I had tried out the wine sampling before ordering sparkling wine! Surrounded by gorgeous gardens and vineyards my next stop at YarraYering was equally magnificent.
Yarra valley produces the best beers, pinot noir, sparkling wine (I was corrected at the table not to confuse it with champagne) and cooler wines.
Beautiful Yarra Yering with its brick walls and landscaped gardens made me more knowledgeable about wines and a wee bit drunk on fermented grape juice. I found it too dry for my liking but the red, white, the Chardonnay are famous from this cellar.
Yarra Yering is one of the oldest wineries and has established themselves as the best in the business. A nominal charge of 10 dollars for wine tasting here is redeemable for any purchase.
Wine tasting is not free in most wineries. The brick restaurant is quaint dishes out cuisine the complements dry wine.
I bought many small take away bottles of different wines from yet another amazing Yarra experience.
Repeated trips here are a must, because apart from covering quaint to luxury wineries, spas, hotels, village shops that can’t be done in a day, the most important round the corner must see are the Dandenong ranges and Healesville Sanctuary.
Great reason for me to visit Melbourne again!