My Mum and Dad to decided to visit us in our new home in Gippsland for my Dad’s birthday recently. His birthday fell on a Monday which is not ideal when you live in country Victoria. This is because, in the country, you’re hard pushed for any of the ‘special occasion’ restaurants to open for meals, let alone any wineries.
So the plan for the day was to take a drive to Lakes Entrance, where we could potentially get a nice lunch with lake views. We were all pretty sure this would end up being at the local pub. However before we committed to the idea, I thought I’d do a quick Google search as I knew there was a winery near the town of Lakes Entrance that Mr Spittoon and I had yet to visit (this is the 23rd Victoria winery we have visited so far). After a quick Google, it said the winery had a restaurant and they were OPEN!
I didn’t believe it. So I gave them a call. And lo and behold, they were open and still serving lunch at 2pm!! Jackpot! Happy birthday Dad!
The winery in question is called Wyanga Park Winery, which is apparently Gippsland’s oldest family owned winery! And I am happy to share that these guys are open 9am to 5pm not 2 but 7 days a week! Wohoo!!
The cellar door
It would be rude to go straight through to the restaurant without stopping for a cellar door tasting right? It must be a winery rule surely – if you’re going to a winery for lunch, then a mandatory tasting at the cellar door pre-lunch has to be done. It’s the only way to make sure you pick the right wine to order with your lunch ;)
It’s safe to say Wyanga Park Winery has a bit of quirk. They are arty souls with a love of wine and food. There is something to look at and admire in every crevice of this Gippsland winery.
The wine line up at the cellar door included:
- Unwooded Chardonnay
- Traimner Riesling
- Sweet Gewurztraminer aka the “Gee Wizz”
- Sweet and fruity Sauvignon Blanc aka the “Boobialla”
- Cabernet Sauvignon
And then there was a couple of fortifieds to finish off the tasting, a port-style red fortified and a muscat fortified.
It was really interesting actually because we tried the muscat as per your normal tasting and then we tried some from a bottle which is kept in the freezer. It doesn’t obviously fully freeze, but just enough to give it a slight slushy type texture. Intriguing!
Henry’s winery cafe
I was happy to see they deliver on what they advertised on their sign outside the cellar door, “hearty winter tucker, open fire”. It’s delicious home cooking that leaves your belly full and content.
After we all decided what we were going to order for lunch, we decided the best bottle to share between the 4 of us that would go with most of our meals was the 2016 Estate Riesling.
I really enjoyed sipping on this wine as I looked down into the winery from the barrel windows in the cafe – what a cute touch!
So here is what we dined on:
Bullant Brewery Pale Ale Beef Pie with Roasted Garlic Mash and Tomato Relish ($22.50)
Chicken & Cauliflower Curry with Green Rice, Coconut Yoghurt & Garlic Naan ($24)
Lakes Entrance Whiting in Beer Batter with Chips, Salad and Tartare ($26)
I really enjoyed the curry and would definitely recommend! In fact I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this spot for a bite to eat if you are in the area. I also hear there are boat cruises that can take you up the lakes to the winery, I think I will try that next time!!
More about Wyanga Park Winery: