Our final day in Victoria and the last excursions of our three week tour took us to the wonderful Yarra Valley. Situated just 50km east of Melbourne it was an easy hour’s drive. Our first stop was at the historic Yarra Yering. This is a very famous estate where Dr Bailey Carrodus worked his magic and created stunning Shiraz as well as Bordeaux blends. After his death a few years ago, the estate was acquired by external investors who have left the winemaking team to get on with what they do best and maintain the legacy.
We were privileged to be hosted by Sarah Crowe, an award winning winemaker who has been at the helm for the past six years. She delivered a highly entertaining and highly informative masterclass on the history, terroir, winemaking techniques and a multitude of other topics as she guided us through a magnificent set of wines. The wines were quite stunning and included the legendary Dry Red No 1 and No 2, a Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, the Agincourt Cabernet Malbec and the Underhill Shiraz.
A brilliant start to the day.
It was then a quick ten minute drive to Healesville – home to the Giant Steps Pop Up tasting room – a temporary base while they build a new tasting room up in the vineyards. For the tasting we were hosted by Daniel who had a number of familiar connections: was from Yorkshire, used to work at The Glasshouse in Kew and more recently was teaching WSET (Wine and Spirit Education Trust) Level 3 in Bermondsey. He gave us a very informative insight into eleven wines of the Giant Steps range before we got back on the bus to have a picnic in the heart of their Sextons Vineyard. This was a gloriously picturesque finish to our tour (dinner not withstanding!) as the sun shone brightly and we admired the magnificent views of the Yarra Valley.