There’s no shortage of delicious food in the Yarra Valley so it’s about time you take a day trip to try it for yourself.
The Yarra Valley is a renowned wine region, which can be visited on an easy day trip from Melbourne. Just 45 minutes from the city, you’ll find yourself surrounded by vineyards and farms.
However, wine is only half the story in the Yarra Valley. The region is also well known for delicious local produce and gourmet meals served at local restaurants and wineries.
To try it out for yourself, jump aboard our Yarra Valley Gourmet Tour from Melbourne. In one fun-filled day trip, you can taste the best of the region’s local produce, extraordinary wines and enjoy a gourmet lunch at one of the wineries.
Read on to find out what we think is the best food in the Yarra Valley.
The Best Food in the Yarra Valley
This excellent wine region, close to Melbourne, is a food-lovers dream. With fresh fruits, hand-crafted chocolates, tasty cheeses and gourmet meals – what’s not to love about a visit to the Valley?
Here’s some of our favourite food in the Yarra Valley – all of which you can taste on our day tour from Melbourne.
Our first stop on the gourmet tour from Melbourne is Yarra Farm Fresh. It is a working fruit farm which has an onsite produce store. The store stocks not only the farm’s fresh produce, but other local products. They give preference to local growers and producers and source high quality products from further afield if they do not grow in the region.
At Yarra Farm Fresh, you notice the fields of strawberries from the moment you enter the driveway. Their rowing season is quite long. They can have freshly picked strawberries for up to eight months of the year. This is thanks to the Yarra Valley climate providing ideal growing conditions.
Our first stop on the Gourmet Tour is a chance to taste some of this fresh fruit. Depending on the season and what fruits are in stock, you might try strawberries, apples, pears, oranges, mandarins, persimmon and more. It’s a refreshing way to wake up the palate for a day of tasting food and wine in the Yarra Valley.
Fresh fruit juices and locally made products
Also a Yarra Farm Fresh, you will taste some of the locally made products that are stocks in the store. Their range includes jams, relishes, fruit juices, nougat, honey, chocolate, fruit, vegetables and much more.
There is fruit juice made from all natural ingredients. Each juice is made from one type of apple, instead of a mixture of many. And it is not full of sugar like many store-bought juices. This means you can actually taste the flavour of the apples. For example, the Pink Lady apple juice tastes exactly like the Pink Lady apples it is made from.
You may also try some of the jams and relishes, as well as the tasty nougat. After your tour tasting session – the first one of the day – there is time to explore the produce store and perhaps purchase some goodies to take home.
Yarra Valley cheeses
The Yarra Valley is a popular farming area, will fertile soils and green paddocks that are good for grazing cattle. There are a few dairy farms in the area, some of which produce fresh dairy products such as cheese and yogurt.
On weekday tours we visit Yarra Valley Dairy to take their freshly made fetas and soft cheeses. On weekend tours we visit Coldstream Dairy to sit and indulge in some of their best cheeses.
Yarra Valley Dairy
The cheeses at the Yarra Valley Dairy will truly melt in your mouth. The dairy shop is located in the century-old milking shed on the property. They specialise in soft cheeses and fetas – which you can taste on tour. The cheeses here are truly stunning and will have your tastebuds working overtime!
On the weekends we visit the Coldstream Dairy to taste their delicious cheeses. Seated on the patio with views out to the farm and surrounding hills, we sample their finest creations. The Dairy specialises in cheeses made using Yarra Valley milk. In particular Italian-style handmade cheeses, fresh feta and yoghurt.
Gourmet winery lunch
On tour we indulge in a gourmet winery lunch at Rochford Wines. In winter it is by the open fireplace and year round you’ll enjoy views of the vineyards. For lunch you can choose from four different main meals – each using fresh, in-season local produce – served with a glass of wine and tea or coffee.
Because they use fresh local produce in their meals, the menu changes throughout the year. If you take our tour more than once, you may see a totally new meal the second time. After lunch, take some time to explore the Rochford gift shop, or perhaps climb the spiral staircase to enjoy the panoramic views of the property.
Chocolate & Ice Cream
To finish the tour you’ll visit the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie. This is where you’ll be welcomed with an exclusive chocolate tasting. The chocolate creations are all hand made and many use ingredients grown on the property. Taste form a range of chocolates and be surprised at some of the interesting and unusual flavours.
Afterwards, check out the displays of thousands of premium chocolates, plus watch the expert chocolatiers hard at work handcrafting chocolate creations. And if you are not full from the chocolate tasting, you can indulge at the cafe or with a handmade ice cream. There are plenty of flavours to choose from!
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is the Yarra Valley?
The Yarra Valley is a scenic 45 minute drive from Melbourne. Located to Melbourne’s north east, it provides a great day trip for foodies and wine-lovers alike.
What wines are produced in the Yarra Valley?
The region is renowned for its wines and wineries – most of which specialise in chardonnay and pinot noir. There are big name wineries like Yering Station, Balgownie Estate and Domaine Chandon, as well as a host of smaller boutique wineries scattered around the scenic valley.
What should I take on a visit to the Yarra Valley?
- Your mates – this is a fun group day out, so bring your friends to enjoy it together
- Your phone / camera – to take photos and capture memories of your day
- A bag to carry all the local produce and goodies you might be tempted to buy
- Your wallet (see above – so much delicious produce on this tour!)
- A jacket in the cooler months
Written by: Leah Furey – Digital Content Coordinator @gowest.com.au