With the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival comes a series of regional events to complement your palate perfectly.  
Anytime of year is a great time for a drop of vino, but nothing beats celebrating the summer months with a visit to a winery. As the vines return to lush green and the nights become a little balmy, vinous thoughts turn to the simple pleasure of sipping a glass of pinot noir rose or a crisp drop of chardie. Especially if you happen to be passing through the Yarra Valley, just 50km from Melbourne’s CBD, where there’s a plethora of wineries to pop into.

The vision of owners Marc and Eva Besen has been “to produce wines of great quality and integrity amidst a location of great beauty”.

Two popular vineyards in that area are Mandala and TarraWarra. Since its first vintage more than 20 years ago, TarraWarra Estate has established itself as one of Australia’s great wine estates, with TarraWarra Estate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir consistently receiving widespread acclaim and many prestigious Australian and international awards.

The vision of owners Marc and Eva Besen has been “to produce wines of great quality and integrity amidst a location of great beauty”.

As part of the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival, TarraWarra Estate will hold a very special “Grown and Made” dinner, showcasing the produce and the people of TarraWarra Estate. Four courses with matching wines for $135 per person. Book directly with the WineBar Café on (03) 5957 3510, www.tarrawarra.com.au

Mandala Wines has produced wine in the Yarra Valley for just over three years and in mid-2008 opened their cellar door and restaurant, which focuses on locally grown produce. Mandala Wines is located on the Melba Highway, seven kilometres north of Yarra Glen, in one of the Valley’s most visited areas.

On Sunday March 14, Mandala is holding their “Feast for Friends” celebration, a family-friendly day complete with live music and children’s entertainment. Tickets are $35 adult, $15 child and $90 family, and include all entertainment and kids soft drinks. For more information call (03) 5965 2016 or visit their website, www.mandalawines.com.au