There have been vineyards in Yarra Valley since the middle of the nineteenth century. In fact, the very first Yarra Valley vineyard was planted in 1838, the first in the state of Victoria.
The perfect way to explore is by taking a tour of the vineyards. Yarra Valley boasts around a hundred wineries, both small family-owned boutique wineries or larger, well-known names in the Australian wine industry. Many of the wineries have cellar doors where you can taste and buy the wines in an atmosphere ranging from the cosy or homely to the downright glamourous. Aussies are renowned for their hospitality and you are not likely to be disappointed with the welcome you’ll receive when visiting the best vineyards in Yarra Valley. Your hosts will ensure that you don’t go hungry either, with many wineries cooking up gourmet meals in their restaurants, baking tasty oven-fired pizzas, serving platters of locally produced cold cuts and cheese, or simply serving up delicious, old-fashioned home-cooked fare.
If you have your heart set on staying in the middle of the region’s stunning scenery and waking up to a sweeping view of leafy vineyards, numerous wineries offer vineyard accommodation. Yarra Valley’s eclectic range of options is sure to have something to suit everyone. Whether you’d like to stay in the lap of luxury and be pampered in a spa or whether you’d prefer something cosier or more ustic, Wine Paths’ local experts have the right contacts to find you your dream accommodation at the best vineyards.
Vineyards in Yarra Valley are famed for their pursuit of excellence with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
Yarra is renowned for its progressive young winemakers. As well as being one of Victoria’s oldest wine-growing regions, it’s also one of its youngest. Events in the early twentieth century succeeded in wiping the Yarra Valley vineyards map clean for several decades, but in the sixties and seventies there was a resurgence of interest in the region with a second wave of creative winemakers putting roots down in the region and beginning to reawaken interest in Australian cool-climate wines. Vineyards in Yarra Valley are famed for their pursuit of excellence with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Their world-class sparkling wine is also on the lists of top restaurants and they are now attracting praise for their structured, elegant Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, here more akin to ‘old-world’ Syrah. You won’t find big jammy reds or oaky buttery Chardonnay here, rather lean, elegant wines of great finesse.
Not content to rest on their laurels, winemakers in the best vineyards in Yarra Valley are continuing to innovate. They are experimenting with cutting-edge methods and processes, but are also making sure they don’t forget their roots, combining modern and traditional methods. They are introducing new varieties, for example the currently über-trendy Grüner Veltliner, or GrüVee, as it has been dubbed, and, of course, there is a whole host of other varieties to uncover in the vineyards. Yarra Valley’s motto is simplicity. More work in the vineyards to produce riper, more balanced fruit, means less need for intervention in the winery.
Grape growers here recognise the importance of the bond between the wine and the land it originates from and endeavour to ensure that this is enhanced and strengthened. Yarra Valley wineries are known for the care they give to ecosystems within the vineyards and the surrounding native bushland and rivers, aiming to ensure that healthy, productive vineyards are passed on down to future generations of grape growers, winemakers and visitors. This time, Yarra Valley winemaking is here to stay.
Wine Paths’ local expert can help you enjoy what this unique landscape has to offer and can design the Yarra Valley vineyard tour to best suit your needs.