Healesville Yarra Valley is considered one of Australia’s premier wine and food regions. As we’d only spent a few days on our last stay, we were keen to revisit the area as it has so much on offer. If you are looking for things to do Yarra Valley as we were you can choose from Cellar doors, dairy farms and cheese tastings, animal sanctuaries, National Parks and day spa’s. You could spend a month in the area and still not see everything on your list!
This was our second visit to the Yarra Valley in as many years and while it’s always tempting to go back to old favourites there’re lots to be said about discovering new gems to treasure. Exploring different parts of the area, this time, we spent the first couple of days in the Marysville area and beyond, then Healesville on our last day. For our accommodation Yarra Valley, we chose Woodlands Forest Retreat and thankfully only one night here on the outskirts of Healesville.
Wineries Healesville Yarra Valley
Yering Station Winery
First stop was Yering Station cellar door. Established in the 1800’s by two Scottish brother’s, they named the 43,00 acres Yering, as it’s an Aboriginal word. Paul de Castella took ownership in 1850 with the Rathbourne family being the current owners of modern times, purchasing the property in 1996.
Throughout the property, you’ll find a cellar door for wine tastings, a small store selling local produce, a bar area (used only on weekends) and a restaurant, all set in beautifully maintained gardens.
Young enthusiastic staff took us through the entry-level wines on offer and appeared to be quite knowledgeable describing each wine’s characteristics and answering any questions.
Punt Road Winery
This winery’s name is derived from an area in Melbourne where a “punt” travelled back and forth across the Yarra River, joining a road (Punt Road) and northern and southern suburbs. Old images show vines sitting on top of a hill, the first grown in Victoria. It’s hard to believe, as now some of the most expensive real estate sits in its place!
One of the things I love about visiting wine regions throughout the world is, the locally produced wines are usually on offer in local bars and restaurants. This being the case in the Yarra Valley and particularly in Healesville, I had already tried the Punt Road Pinot Grigio and found it delicious!
So delicious it was sold out at the cellar door! Seems my fellow Pinot Grigio lovers thought it delicious too! Never mind, we were able to try a few other varietals on offer and thaw out a little in front of the wood fire, as some cooler weather had settled in for the day.
Punt Road cellar door is set within an orchard of pink lady and delicious apples, the evidence on display with the trees ladened with fruit, with hundreds lying rotting on the ground. With the cider industry booming, the latest owners chose only to crush the food grade apples, tossing the rest, making some of the most sought-after ciders in Australia. For me, this was one of the best wineries Yarra Valley.
If you are visiting the wineries Yarra Valley then this one is a must!
At the top of this post I spoke about revisiting old favourites and as we were passing, well, why not! Late in the afternoon and having missed the last tour (we had taken the tour previously) we opted for wine-tasting instead, a hardship I know, but someone has to do it!
You might be thinking there may be a connection to that famous bottle of bubbles produced across the other side of the world given the second half of Domains’ name and you’d be correct! The French Champagne house, Moet and Chandon established Domain Chandon in 1986. They dedicated their production and Methode traditional sparkling wines to the cold climate wines grown in the Yarra Valley.
We found it all a bit of a rush this time, without the personal touch of the staff enjoyed on our previous visit, however, that didn’t take away from the quality of the wines tasted. For a locally produced sparkling white, the Chandon is quite refreshing, perfect for a summer’s day, who am I fooling, anytime really!
These are just three of the 80 wineries with 50 open cellar doors in the Healesville, Yarra Valley region. No doubt you could visit more in one day as there are a few tours offered throughout the area. We prefer to come and go as we please as we dislike sticking to a timetable and feel like we are being herded so opt to explore regions ourselves.
Have you been to the Healesville Yarra Valley wineries? Do you prefer tours or see an area under your own steam?