Where to blend your own wine in Victoria

Travelling Well | Tianna Nadalin | Posted on 18 October 2019

Get hands-on at these immersive wine blending and winemaking experiences.

Fancy yourself a fledgling winemaker or just love learning about your favourite drop? Test your palate and your vino appreciation skills with a wine-blending or immersive cellar-door masterclass at one of Victoria’s leading wineries. Whether you want to blend it like the Champenoise or feel like fortifying your own future, these are some of the best places in Victoria to soak up some wine skills. 


Slides: Secret Art of Blending and underground barrel hall at Tahbilk, Brown Brothers' Milawa cellar door, Rochford Estate, Pizzini cellar door, The Shiraz Republic in Heathcote.


Seven of the best wine blending and winemaking experiences in Victoria 

Rochford

878-880 Maroondah Hwy, Coldstream

Grab your friends and get your wine critic on with a friendly vino blending competition at the Yarra Valley’s charming Rochford Estate. After a guided tasting, Rochford’s wine experts will provide you with tasting charts and aroma kits to help you blend your own winning bottle. Cost: $65 per person (minimum of four people).

Foxeys Hangout

795 White Hill Rd, Red Hill

Have an affinity for French fizz? Choose your own effervescent adventure at Foxeys Hangout in Red Hill on the Mornington Peninsula. In this intimate tutorial, winemaker Michael Lee will take you through the final stages of the sparkling wine process – including disgorgement (removing the lees), dosage (topping up with sugar and base wine) and corkage. You’ll get to taste the sparkling wines at varying levels of sweetness and create a bottle of bubbles made exactly to your taste. Cost: $65 for two people, including tastings and a take-home bottle. 

While you’re there: Treat yourself to a night away at RACV Cape Schanck Resort, where on-site restaurant Cape was recently awarded a Chef’s Hat. Members save 25 per cent on accommodation. Members also get 15 per cent off cellar door purchases when they show their card at Dromana Estate or 15 per cent off take away wine and beer at Hickinbotham of Dromana.

 

Farmer holding freshly picked cabernet grapes in his hand

Learn about the basics of grape growing and site selection.


Person pressing crushed red grapes in barrel

See behind-the-scenes of a working winery.


Red wine juice being pressed from barrel

Rent a vine at The Shiraz Republic. Image via Facebook.


Brown Brothers

239 Milawa-Bobinawarrah Rd, Milawa

Learn how to blend it like the Brown Brothers at their award-winning Milawa winery and cellar door. Taste wines straight from the barrel and experiment with different flavour profiles and combinations until you nail your ideal blend. You’ll then bottle and label your grape juice, which is sure to be a fun conversation starter at your next dinner party. Cost: $70 per person 

Pizzini

175 King Valley Rd, Whitfield

Go on a Journey with the Maker and unleash your inner vintner at Pizzini Wines. This immersive experience takes you behind the scenes of the pioneering King Valley winery, giving you insights into everything from how vineyard sites are selected to the barrel ageing process and tutored tastings, and finish off with a boozy picnic lunch. Cost: $240 per person (minimum two people). 

Tahbilk Winery 

254 Oneils Rd, Tabilk

Love fresh, fruity reds or prefer them big, bold and oaky? Learn the intricate art of blending from the family winemakers at Tahbilk, one of Victoria’s oldest wineries. The session stars with a guided tour of the winery’s historic underground cellars at Nagambie, where you’ll learn about the science and techniques behind some of the world’s great wines, then get your vintner on and try your hand at creating your own signature blend to take home. Cost: $75 per person (or $135 with lunch).

In the area? Stop in at Bright Brewery and show your RACV membership card for 15 per cent off their behind-the-scenes tour or Brewer for a Day experience. Or visit Casa Luna in the King Valley for 15 per cent off food when dining in the restaurant. Bookings essential. Members also get 15 per cent off purchases at Delatite Winery cellar door in nearby Mansfield and 20 per cent off wine at Indigo Vineyard in Beechworth.

Join the barrel club at Stanton & Killeen and blend your own Rutherglen fortified.

Join the barrel club at Stanton & Killeen and blend your own Rutherglen fortified.


The Shiraz Republic 

507 Hamblin Rd, Cornella 

Attention shiraz lovers. If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at making your own wine, here’s your chance. Rent a row of vines at The Shiraz Republic, a vineyard in the shiraz heartland of Heathcote, and the grapes are yours to pick, crush, press and bottle – with the help and guidance of The Shiraz Republic vignerons, of course. Cost: From $350 for a communal barrel or $800 for 25 litres of your own plonk. Other options also available.

Stanton & Killeen

440 Jacks Rd, Rutherglen 

Consider yourself a fortified wine enthusiast? Rutherglen family winemakers Stanton & Killeen offer you the opportunity to not only develop your own unique blend, but to own a barrel of it. Their Liquid Luxury packages are a long-term investment, allowing you to choose your barrel size and the variety of wine you’d like to fill it with (tawny, barrel blend, white fortified, topaque or muscat). As well as having a year-round supply of your personalised drop, owning your own barrel is the gift that keeps giving and allows you to taste and experience how the wine develops over time. Cost: From $400 (five-litre barrel).

Up the road: Show your card and save 15 per cent on cellar door wine purchases at Rutherglen Estates.

Planning a day trip or holiday in one of Victoria's fabulous wine regions? 

RACV's Regional Food and Wine Program is encouraging members to get out and explore their own backyard. Simply show your membership card to save up to 20 per cent on purchases at selected cellar doors, winery restaurants, food producers, microbreweries and more across regional Victoria.