Nagambie itself is a small town in the North Central district of Victoria. The region itself is home to the wineries of Tahbilk, Mitchelton and McPherson Wines (currently no cellar door to visit). For the next installment in our Destinations series of posts, we will look at one of our favourite wine regions, albeit with a much smaller number of cellar doors to visit…
Getting there: A bit more than 1.5 hours from Melbourne (2 hours from the CBD) you can do this as a day trip. Head north to Seymour on the Hume Highway and then take the Goulburn Valley Highway until you see the sign to the Nagambie Lakes Wine Region. There is a really nice wine-glass statue at the roundabout shortly after you exit the highway.
Cellar Doors: You cannot get a more contrasting pair of cellar doors than those of Tahbilk and Mitchelton, so visit both! Lunch is served most days, check the websites for details and, if you are visiting on a weekend… BOOK in advance, they are both VERY POPULAR (with good reason).
At Tahbilk, the cellar door (pictured below) is a historical artefact in its own right. Doing a tasting before lunch is a good idea, as you get to try a few wines before knowing what to have with your lunch… There are a lot of cellar door only wines here, including the Dalfarras label wines, which are the more experimental varietals that are much harder to find grown elsewhere. Marsanne is a specialty of the region, with Tahbilk having the oldest plantings of the grape anywhere in the world.
Mitchelton, by comparison, has a truly modern cellar door. This is not to take anything away from the experience, because it is also excellent. The wine varieties are similar to Tahbilk in many ways but are often made differently. The use of newer oak barrels, or in the case of Marsanne, the use of oak barrels themselves, is a particular distinction of the process which changes the flavours in the glass. We are not entirely sure which we prefer, so we buy from both!
Lunch at Mitchelton is also a high-class experience with a very modern dining room. You can also book accommodation or a conference here if the need arises.