Mornington Peninsula’s best boutique wineries and small cellar doors

Umbrellas on sunny deck with pink building at Nazaraay Estate

Tianna Nadalin

Posted April 20, 2023

Love wine tasting but hate crowds? Escape the hustle and bustle at these boutique Mornington Peninsula wineries and small cellar doors.

When it comes to wine regions, Mornington Peninsula is the ultimate triple threat. Though it’s long been known for its sparkling bay beaches and rugged surf breaks, these days it’s the region’s rolling vine-blanketed hinterland that is drawing throngs of thirsty crowds.

Just over an hour’s drive from Melbourne, this charming wine country is a food and wine lover’s wonderland, offering a bounty of ambrosial experiences across its 100-plus small-scale wineries and cellar doors.

As well as garnering a global reputation for producing elegant pinot noirs and understated chardonnays, Mornington Peninsula is also forging a reputation as one of the state’s go-to gastronomic destinations, with sophisticated bistros and celebrated restaurants sparking a new wave of culinary tourism.

Whether you’re visiting for the waves, wine, or you’re just looking for a laid-back dining experience, we’re popping the cork on the Ninch's best boutique vineyards and small-scale cellar doors.

Mornington Peninsula’s best boutique wineries

Nazaraay Estate

When winemaker Paramdeep (or Param) Ghumman and his wife Nirmal emigrated to Australia from India in 1981, they never imagined they’d end up owning their own winery on the Mornington Peninsula. So when they purchased 20 hectares of cattle farmland, it was the beginning of a wild new adventure.

Fast forward to today and Nazaraay Estate has a range of multi-award-winning pinot noirs and chardonnays, as well as a vibrant cellar door where you can book in for either a regular wine flight, or a tasting with a matched Indian tasting plate.

All proceeds from tastings are donated to the Tiger Water Life Project, a conservation organisation dedicated to saving Royal Bengal Tigers from extinction.

Visit: 266 Meakins Rd, Flinders. Open Friday to Sunday from midday. Bookings recommended.


When it comes to premium, certified organic pinot noir, pinot gris, and alternative Italian varietals, they don’t get much better than at Quealy.

This past-meets-present winery, helmed by the pioneering and perhaps best-known winemaker on the peninsula, Kathleen Quealy, is producing exceptional wines using a blend of contemporary and ancestral winemaking methods to encapsulate the elegance and nuance of the peninsula’s unique terroir. Make sure you try the Seventeen Rows Pinot Noir.

Visit: 62 Bittern-Dromana Rd, Balnarring. Cellar door open daily from 9am. Bookings recommended.

Tree-lined drive way to hinterland cellar door Avani

Tree-lined entrance to Avani Estate. Photo: Supplied.

Ocean 8

The winemakers behind Ocean 8 wines come from a good vintage. Helmed by Young Gun of Wine Mike Aylward, who cut his winemaking teeth at his then family-owned Kooyong Estate before they sold it in 2003.

His first solo release under the Ocean Eight label in 2004 was a pinot gris, which remains a core offering, but it is a complex, mineral-driven chardonnay for which Mike has become renowned. It’s worth a visit just to drive down the enchanting entrance framed by towering trees.

Visit: 271 Tucks Rd, Shoreham. Open Friday to Sunday, from midday. No bookings required.


The wines are all about place at this boutique, minimal intervention winery. Run by long-time local restaurateurs Shashi Singh – who has a Masters in chemistry as well as a double-degree in viticulture and oenology – and her husband Devendra, Avani is the embodiment of its Sanskrit name: ‘the earth’.

The vineyard is biodynamically farmed and chemical and pesticide-free, with each wine telling the story of the site and season in which it was grown. It was also awarded Gourmet Traveller’s Best Small Cellar Door Award in 2022.

Visit: 98 Stanleys Road, Red Hill South. Cellar door open weekends from 11am. Bookings recommended.

Elan Vineyard

A winery meets art gallery? Don’t mind if we do.

Introducing Elan Vineyard, a small, family-run vineyard planted in the early 1980s on a sloping Balnarring hillside. The on-site gallery features artist in residence Russell Scott, whose bright, abstract works evoke a sense of whimsy.

Pop to the cellar door for a tasting, then sit and sip in the rotunda overlooking the vineyard while your little tackers run wild in the playground. Barbecue and picnic facilities are also available.

Visit: 17 Turners Rd, Balnarring. Cellar door open weekends from 11am. No bookings required.

Phaedrus Estate

If you’re looking for the perfect picnic spot, you’ve found it. This small, family-run cellar door overlooks a rambling vineyard, which is planted across two hectares of meandering Mooroduc hinterland. Owner winemakers Ewan and Maitena met while studying oenology at Adelaide University and built Phaedrus Estate from the ground up; this year marks their 25th vintage.

Choose a sunny spot on the deck, patio or lawn and enjoy a local cheese platter washed down some quality estate-grown wines. The fiano is a must sip.

Visit: 220 Mornington-Tyabb Rd, Moorooduc. Open daily. No bookings required.

Outdoor sofa on deck at modern Yal Yal winery

Yal Yal Estate's contemporary cellar door. Photo: Supplied.

Yal Yal

If there’s one place to add to our boutique Mornington Peninsula winery bucket list, it’s Yal Yal. This picturesque estate is not only producing elegant premium wines; it is also an architectural masterpiece.

Nestled into the gently sloping hills of Merricks, this stunning cellar door, reimagined by design firm Intermode, literally feels like a home among the gum trees. This is the place to visit if you want to sip premium wines at a modern winery with a rural outlook.   

Visit: 21 Yal Yal Rd, Merricks. Open Friday to Sunday, from midday. Bookings essential.

Rahona Valley

This dog-friendly Dromana cellar door and tasting room is set to become your new weekend go-to. Located in Dromana’s burgeoning Collins Road Industrial Estate Precinct (along with local heavyweights including Jetty Road Brewery, Two Bays Brewery, Jimmy Rum, Boatshed Cheese and Bass & Flinders Distillery), Rahona Valley is all about good wine and great ambience.

Stop in for summer Sunday sessions featuring a rotating list of live and local musicians, chocolate and wine tasting masterclasses, or a wine tasting and a limited menu of delectable drinking accompaniments (think platters, pate, chips, chocolate and fresh oysters).

Visit: Open weekends from midday. Bookings recommended.

Paradigm Hill

When it comes to sustainable wineries, they don’t get much greener than Paradigm Hill. The environmentally sustainable estate is working forwards a zero-carbon footprint, installing a 30kWh solar system to offset its energy usage and rainwater tanks to reduce water waste, as well as using dry farming practices to reduce the need for irrigation.

Even the striking cellar door was designed with efficiency in mind. While sustainability underpins their winemaking philosophy, this family-run outfit is still focused on producing quality wines that exhibit pure varietal expression. Try their Riesling, a unique offering on the peninsula.

Visit: 26 Merricks Rd, Merricks. Open weekends from midday.

Kerri Greens

Kerri Greens started out as a passion project for second-generation winemaker Tom McCarthy (son of Kathleen Quealy and Kevin McCarthy, of T’Gallant winemaking fame) and ex-Quealy vineyard manager Lucas Blanck.

Now, a decade on, the small-scale winery is creating a big reputation for itself as one to watch. BYO picnic and pull up a sunny spot on the lawn with a class of estate-made wine, or pop by for a tasting then enjoy a glass of your favourite drop (we highly recommend the gewurztraminer) out on the sun-drenched patio.

Visit: 38 Paringa Rd, Red Hill South. Open Friday to Sunday. Bookings recommended but walk-ins welcome.

Woman walking into shed cellar door

Tallarida's rustic cellar door has a laid-back vibe. Photo: Supplied.


This boutique Boneo winery and cider house is a great spot to end a day of wine tasting on the peninsula. The winery, which was established in 1988, is known for being a producer of benchmark and award-winning chardonnays, while it’s Saint Roch wines, which are made for sharing around the family dinner table, are a little more playful and approachable.

This is a lovely, laid-back spot for a leisurely sip and a local cheese platter.

Visit: 148 Browns Road, Boneo. Open Friday to Sunday from 11am. No booking required.

Abelli Estate

It’s hard not to fall in love with the wines and their makers at Abelli Estate. The boutique family-run vineyard, which is located in the heart of Red Hill and offers stunning valley views, was previously a daffodil farm until it was purchased as a hobby farm and vines were planted in 1996.

As well as a range of small-batch wines, the kitchen is also plating up a selection of Hellenic tapas, including saganaki, spanakopita and mixed grill options.

Visit: 1052 Mornington-Flinders Road, Red Hill. Open Friday to Sunday from 11am.


A gravel path beneath a lush vine-swept arbour leads you to Stonier’s intimate cellar door. The pioneering vineyard was established in 1978 when founder Brian Stonier decided to plant some chardonnay while his kids were out surfing. Since then, the winery has gone from strength to strength, achieving international acclaim for both its pinot noirs and chardonnays.

Visit: 2 Thompson's Lane, Merricks. Cellar door open daily from 11am. Bookings recommended.

Honourable mentions

  • Prancing Horse: 39 Paringa Road, Red Hill South.
  • Myrtacae: 53 Main Creek Rd, Red Hill
  • Eldridge Estate: 120 Arthurs Seat Rd, Red Hill
  • Fenian Wines: 295 Dunns Creek Rd, Red Hill
  • The Cups Estate: 269 Browns Rd, Fingal
  • Staindl: 63 Shoreham Rd, Red Hill South

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