08.04.2019

Exploring the wine-rich and food-opulent slopes of Red Hill

The beloved Mornington Peninsula region has plenty to offer for all connoisseurs of food and wine.

It’s easy to get so caught up in the clamour and commotion of Big City life. Admit it, you’re guilty as charged. Sometimes, a remedial decamp to somewhere bucolic and food-filled is in order. In the name of imbibing, dining and unwinding, we’re issuing a sojourn to Red Hill. Here, the pinot is potent, the charcuterie is omnipresent and the grapevines are resplendent. Also, there’s no trams. Consider this a gastronomic itinerary for the next time you call a well-deserved Out Of Office. Romantics look no further than the palpably charming Polperro for your warm-up. Here, you can retreat to the on-site lake for an intimate moment of bliss and brie on a picnic rug. Lap up antipasto-style cheese, lavosh and puckering fruit jams sent to your hamper express shipped from heaven.

 
 
 
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A post shared by Polperro | Even Keel (@polperrowines) on Apr 2, 2019 at 9:50pm PDT

Follow this closely with a wine tasting in which you fawn your best “I am a trained sommelier from Bordeaux” analysis of a curated beverage lineup, and you’ll be tipsy enough to start pondering lunch. For a sit-down feast with prime vistas, you can’t bypass The Piazza Cafe and Cellar Door at Montalto. Sitting atop one of the most glorious hills in Red Hill, it’s like a food-filled looking glass into a lush green expanse. As you step outside, lofty white umbrellas scatter a buzzing veggie patch – the fruits of which will soon be arriving at your table. Planted, fed, watered and grown onsite, each vegetable-laden plate is a project of love. For pizza enthusiasts, the margherita on offer here is cheesy and triumphant. And if you’re really down to carb-load, order a vat of their famed roasted potatoes with aioli for good measure.

A spritzy, pink Moscato with hints of Turkish delight and strawberry makes for the perfect afternoon aperitif before you roll into your next afternoon stop: Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm. Fresh off the vine, strawbs’ here are the juicy, opulent jewels in Red Hill’s crown. This is how it works: pay $9 upon arrival and you get handed a plastic container along with a sexy pair of blue, scrubs shoe covers. Frolic in the strawberry patch, fill your punnet until obviously overflowing, and begrudgingly start the commute home with tomorrow’s muesli toppings as a reminder of your getaway.

 
 
 
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A post shared by Strawberry U-Pick | Café (@sunnyridgestrawberryfarm) on Feb 25, 2019 at 11:35pm PST