Your next weekend wine getaway is at Heathcote

Peregrine Ridge focuses on shiraz styles and is rated five stars by James Halliday.

Peregrine Ridge focuses on shiraz styles and is rated five stars by James Halliday. Photo: City of Greater Bendigo

Just when you think you’ve found all of Victoria’s wine regions, there’s always a surprise destination just waiting to be found.

At Heathcote, 140 kilometres north of Melbourne, there’s a wealth of wine for the tasting. The regional destination punches well above its weight with award winning wines and cellar door experiences.

Heathcote specialises in shiraz and in recent years has gained success with more varieties including marsanne, sangiovese, tempranillo, viognier and cabernet sauvignon.

The first vineyards were planted in the area during the 1850s with the climate and soil around Heathcote proving to be the perfect conditions for vineyards. The region is at elevations of 160m and 380m, and the majority of soil under the vines is cambrian – red and deep with excellent water retention.

Wine lovers can taste all that Heathcote has to offer at its cellar doors, many of which have recently been renovated including:

Peregrine Ridge – located at an elevation ranging from 250-290 metres, Peregrine Ridge is the highest vineyard on the east side of the Mount Camel Range. The winery focuses on shiraz styles and is rated five stars by James Halliday.

There are beautiful views from the cellar doors, which serves cheese and dip platters, as well as coffee and tea.

Tellurian winery

Tellurian winery at Heathcote. Photo: City of Greater Bendigo

Tellurian Wines – this family owned winery is certified organic, which means healthier soils with better moisture penetration. The cellar door offers cheese and charcuterie platters and is open from 11am to 4.30pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Vinea Marson – this small family winery has true Italian heritage with owner Mario coming from a long line of wine makers. Tastings at the cellar door are held in true true Italian style – at the family table. Antipasti, including cured meats and Italian cheeses, are available to really make the tasting experience sing.

Munari Wines – found in the foothills of the Mount Ida Range, Munari offers prosecco, vermentino, grenache rosé, cabernet, red blends, dessert wines and, of course, shiraz. Charcuterie boards and cheese platters are available with wine tastings. The cellar door is open seven days a week from 11am.

Silverspoon winery at Heathcote.

Silver Spoon winery at Heathcote. Photo: City of Greater Bendigo

Silver Spoon Estate – this boutique winery is totally off-grid, which led it to win the Bendigo Bank business excellence award for sustainability in 2021. Sip wine from the cellar door, enjoy the vineyard views and watch the kangaroos jump by. Its cellar door is open every Friday-Sunday, 11am until 5pm.

Wren Estate – With this vineyard voted among the top 10 best new wineries in the 2021 Halliday Wine Companion, owner and winemaker Michael Wren got off to a flying start. The cellar door has a menu of cheese and meat platters, as well as light eats. The cellar door is open every Friday from 12-4.30pm, every weekend and public holiday from 11am to 4.30pm.

Chauncy, Heathcote

Chauncy, Heathcote. Photo: City of Greater Bendigo

Chauncy – If you’d like to add a lunch to your wine tasting day out, look no further than Chauncy. The French cuisine-inspired restaurant was recently awarded two chefs hats after opening last year. Lunch is available there from Friday to Monday, from 12.30pm.

The upcoming Heathcote on Show is an ideal way to taste your way through the region’s wines.

Held on the King’s Birthday weekend on June 10-12, the show brings artisan winemakers, chefs, brewers and musicians together to celebrate all the region has to offer. Visitors can try wine tastings, sample new releases, listen to live music and try gourmet food at more cook than 30 unique locations.

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