Be inspired by Victoria's rich and diverse food and wine scene, home to some of the country's most famous culinary creatives. Sample seasonal delights at fine dining and casual venues, from the city to the sea. Wander through rolling green vineyards and savour varietals in one of the state's many wine regions. Soak up the renowned coffee culture in urban laneways and relish innovative dishes at regional restaurants serving up fresh, local produce. Arrive ready to explore or time your visit to coincide with one of the many popular food festivals across the state.
Melbourne's never-ending list of acclaimed restaurants is well documented, but the magic doesn't stop there. Head further afield to savour the inventive and authentic culinary offerings available across regional Victoria.
Cruise down the Great Ocean Road to Birregurra's Brae, a 30 acre organic farm that offers an impeccable paddock-to-plate experience. Nearby in Dunkeld, Wickens at Royal Mail Hotel shines a light on the best of the region's produce. Cut across to the Lake House in Daylesford for an evening of seasonal dishes with a contemporary spin alongside an acclaimed wine list. Next stop is the Mornington Peninsula, where Doot Doot Doot celebrates the bounty from local producers amid surreal interiors and cutting edge design.
Famous for its flavourful red wines and cool-climate whites, Victoria is also home to a growing cohort of artisanal gin, beer and whiskey producers. Four Pillars Gin, the country's most popular craft spirit, is crafted in Healesville in the Yarra Valley. Stop in for a tasting, distillery tour and even a masterclass. Down on the Bellarine Peninsula, The Whiskery boasts a tasting room set within a distillery. Beer lovers will enjoy a jaunt along the Mornington Peninsula Beer, Cider and Spirits Trail, which takes in Bass and Flinders Distillery and Jetty Road Brewery. Get a taste of the pear and apple ciders at Hart's Farm or the gluten-free brew at TWOBays Brewery.
Celebrate Victoria's ever-expanding foodie scene at one of the festivals across the region. Start big with the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, which hosts over 300 events in Melbourne and across Victoria, highlighting what's unique and the best of each district. Usher in the harvest at the Grampians Grape Escape, a superb regional event listed in the American Express Top Grape Harvest Festivals in the World. Bring your appetite and keep the party rolling at events of every kind, from long lunches and outdoor barbecue to craft beers and more.
Fresh is best, always. So head out this weekend and pick up a basketful of seasonal produce straight from the market garden, farmgate or country kitchen. For those without a lot of time, Queen Victoria Market, Prahran Market and South Melbourne Market offer a stellar lineup of seasonal produce and speciality wares. Otherwise, say goodbye to the city noise and hit the highway. Explore the Otway Harvest Trail and indulge with farmhouse cheese at Timboon Cheesery and single malt whisky at Timboon Railway Shed Distillery. Sip and savour local treats along one of the Yarra Valley taste trails. Seafood lovers will find it hard to resist what’s on offer along the Bellarine Taste Trail, including the famous blue mussels and oysters at Advance Mussel Supply.