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Australia Travel: Yarra Valley Wine Region, Australia — Activity Recommendations

Reading Time: 5 minutes

In this post we share photos from a day spent at various wineries and points of interest in Yarra Valley, Australia. Situated just 30 minutes from Melbourne, the region’s cool climate makes it a wonderful place for wine, beer and cider production.


Logistics

  • Travel to Yarra Valley from Melbourne by private car for 34 kilometers / 21 miles / 30-40 minutes

Locations Covered

  • Rob Dolan
  • Yarra Valley Chocolaterie and Ice Creamery
  • Tokar Estates
  • Helen & Joey Estate
  • Yering Farm (Apple Cider)

Map from Melbourne to Yarra Valley

  • Make your way onto the Eastern Freeway and travel towards Ringwood. The Eastern Freeway turns into the Eastlink Tollway after Springvale Road.
  • If you have an Eastlink or Citylink pass, continue on the Eastlink Tollway and go through the Mullum Mullum tunnel – make sure to stay in the left lane as the turnoff is straight after the tunnel ends.
  • Turn left after exiting the tunnel towards Ringwood.
  • Turn left onto the Maroondah Highway towards Lilydale.
  • Once past Lilydale, you can choose where in the Yarra Valley to explore.

via Yarra Ranges Tourism, 2022

Map of Yarra Valley Locations

Rob Dolan

This small, family-owned winery is located at the gateway of the Yarra Valley and is run by Rob Dolan, whose 20+ year career in the Australian wine industry enabled him to successfully launch his eponymous label.

The main grape varieties grown at Rob Dolan include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Savagnin, Arneis, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Shiraz. The best-quality grapes are used in the production of their world-famous red, white, rosé, dessert, and sparkling wines.

Yarra Valley Chocolaterie and Ice Creamery

Creating the most popular sweet destinations in Victoria has been the vision of husband and wife team, Ian & Leanne Neeland. At this location European chocolatiers hand craft over 400 different chocolate products at this location and fill the showroom with myriad couverture delights. The laws, gardens, orchard and wetlands make for a perfect space for a post-sugar stroll.

Tokar Estates

“In addition to planting traditional varieties (Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Chardonnay) Tokar Estates were the first in the valley to plant the Spanish varietal Tempranillo”(Tokar Estate, 2022).

The Tokar Estate label was launched in 1999. In 2003 they opened a Mediterranean inspired cellar door and restaurant modeled after traditional European hospitality.

Helen & Joey Estate

“Helen & Joey respectfully acknowledges the traditional owners, the Wurundjeri people, as the custodians of this land. We pay respect to all Aboriginal community Elders, past, present and emerging, who have resided in the area and have been an integral part of the history of the region.

The cool climate Fernando Vineyard on Spring Lane, Gruyere was purchased in 2010 by Helen and Joey.  Much passion, hard work and expertise has gone in to producing premium fruit across this stunning 200 acre farm” (Helen & Joey Estate, 2022).

Yering Farm – Apple Cider

The Johns Family bought Yering Farm in 1980 and brought five generations of knowledge as orchardists and farmers to the land, and planted its first vine in 1989. The land’s history dated much earlier to the 1800s by the “Deschamps, a French/Swiss family of vignerons who established substantial cellars and succeeded as viticulturists and winemakers in the Yarra Valley” (Yering Farm Wines, 2022).

Alan Johns “wanted to incorporate the past and the lands rich history [by]merging both historic and modern perspectives to inject new life into the resurgence of the Yarra Valley and its footprint in the Wine World”. Johns took cuttings from Cabernet vines that were “sourced from the clone acclaimed from the property’s forefather, Joseph Deschamps.  Alan grew all the cuttings by hand using his years of orcharding to cultivate a nursery before slowly planning and planting out the vineyard” (Yering Farm Wines, 2022). Today the winery grows varieties like Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. In addition, the Farm grows and produces small parcels of fruit to a 30-acre vineyard.

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