Escaping To The Yarra Valley Pt2

The exciting conclusion to one of the great stories of 2011… (or something). Read part one here

Lunch at Giant Steps/Innocent Bystander

Including my first introduction to pork rillette – this could be a life long love affair. Great venue, great food and well worth a visit. The staff were great even the guy who foolishly assumed the guy would be drinking beer and the girl wine. Ohh how we laughed!

Nice venue.

The weather had been hot all day and was starting to get oppressive

As was my need to spit everything so I could continue to drive. The heat seemed to be bothering the people at our next stop too. Rochford was strange. Attracting anyone’s attention is hard. Then they seemed to be giving us an angry tasting. The wines were a mixed bag. Somewhere good, some were uninspiring.
They also tried to sell us a segway (pictured below) tour of the winery. An interesting idea could certainly get hairy dealing with people at the end of a long day touring. But it was not for us on a day like that. Plus, we had more wine to taste.

All I want to do is ride this and say "Michael"

Oakridge was next, an air-conditioned cellar door was just the trick! As were the stunning the Chardonnays that they made. From entry level to the single sites they were all great. A great source of amusement is when my companion goes off on a tangent of how Australian’s should make Australian wine and not compare it to French wine. And just after this our friendly host came up to pour the Syrah for us, called so “because it is more French in style than the Barossa style Shiraz.” In the face of such a challange, I feel I did exceptionally well to maintain my composure. The reds were nice, but I left with a bottle of the Estate Chardonnay. Seriously, Try the chardonnays!

Did I mention it was incredibly hot?

The last stop was Chandon. A chance to taste some Aussie ‘Champagne’ (ha!), the wines are always quite well put together and enjoyable. But, it would have been more enjoyable to have been sitting down and relaxing with a glass I could drink.

It was really hot by now and so home time was called. Overall it was an interesting trip, we tasted some of the best in the Valley and some of the indifferent. It certainly will have to be repeated in the near future. There were quite a few great places on the wishlist that we didn’t get a chance to see. Plus, cellar door people are some of the most amusing and sometimes alarming people you could hope to interact with.

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