Last weekend I was lucky enough to be taken on a very special tour through the Yarra Valley, as the guest of the Yarra Valley Regional Food Group. We were in search of good food and wine, and we found it in abundance.
Orson Koch from Yarra Valley Transfers was our chauffeur for the day. Charming and knowledgeable, he was able to fill in the landscape with tall tales, local gossip and foodie tips. He could also drive, which was very handy because we had a lot to cover.
The Yarra Valley sits in the undulating, vineyard-laced hills outside of the World’s Most liveable city, Melbourne. An easy 45 minute drive to the North East from the City, and one definitely worth taking.
Where the roads widen out and the horizon stands tall and green and proud, nestled there amongst the hills, you will find the Yarra Valley.
I visit the Yarra Vally regularly for;
- Wine, wineries, wandering.
- U-pick cherries. Every November and December, without fail. Unique varietals, local, family-run farms. Amazing, intricate flavours.
- Plump, juicy strawberries and blueberries that taste just like the ones that Grandma used to serve.
Well now I have a few more reasons to visit this beautiful part of Victoria.
First stop of the day was Gateway Estate.
Run by Brett and his lovely wife Karen, Gateway Estate is a farm, cafe and local produce shop. This is a local business which Brett runs in conjunction with his brother. His Father also lives on the 110 acre property.
I have driven past this roadside stall many times without stopping. I won’t be making that mistake again. This is a great place to pick up local produce and supplies including beef, pasta, tea, jams, pickles, spices, fruit and veg.
You can visit their on site greenhouse for a small amount of u-pick strawberries all year around. You can also purchase frozen, local berries which are often hard to come by at this time of year.
Gateway Estate started out as a wholesale market with a thriving business growing and selling Capsicum. A roadside stall was eventually added to sell their tomato crop and the business has evolved naturally from there. A lot of other local producers also now sell through the shop.
It now exists as one of the best displays of Yarra Valley produce in the one spot.
- Gateway Estate free range grass fed Angus Beef.
- seasonal fruit and vegetables.
- Yarra Valley Pasta
- Yarra Valley Tea co. Organic Tea
- Local free range eggs
and more. Visit their website for more information.
On the day I visited these gorgeous Cara Cara oranges were on display. With a very brief growing season they are only available for a short time. They were rich orangey red in colour and sweetly piquant in taste.
Brett was kind enough to take us for a tour of his growing sheds, the true heart of his business. We saw rows upon rows of strawberry plants in the u-pick strawberry growing room.
From there our tour we moved to the herb room. These basil plants look like little obedient herby soldiers, yes? Ready to obey your every cooking request.
Gateway Estate also produce a massive capsicum crop.
Yarra Valley Gateway Estate also has a cafe onsite and we were treated to a delicious egg and bacon roll and a cup of Yarra Valley Tea Co tea.
Visit for a toasted egg, cheese and bacon roll using local ingredients. $9.50
Chunky Beef pie $5.95 , a sausage roll, or a lovely selection of filled donuts $3-$3.50. Visit the Yarra Valley Gateway Estate Facebook page for more information.
All up we had a wonderful morning in a lovely venue. This really is great, local, lovingly produced Australian produce at its best. How could you possibly say no to that?
Address: 667 Maroondah Highway, Coldstream VIC
Phone: 03 9739 0568
Open: 9am – 5.30pm everyday.
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Happy Eating. Dani xx