2. From Melbourne: Yarra Valley Wine, Gin, Chocolate Day Trip
We put an emphasis on the social, casual and fun side of a tour by making the group comfortable with one another. The day starts by everyone contributing to a playlist via Spotify so we have music for the day. Once we are on the road we want to get to know what type of people do we have. Are you a big drinker? More of a chocolate and cheese type? Do you like wine ? Do you like beer instead? The guide aims to figure out what kind of group he has and what everyone wants to do. Together, we all contribute to the itinerary and make a plan for the day.
There are a lot of options to choose from, but generally there is time for 5 venues. Options range from over 100 wineries of all sizes (some of which are better at certain wines and blends than others), A gin distillery, a champagne place, a cheese place, a cider place, a beer place, a chocolate place, a vodka distillery, a blueberry winery, art museums and restaurants.
We generally have time for 5 venues, so we can't do everything! But we aim to try and make sure we do the things that most of the group want to do. If the group want to do a bit of everything we try our best to do as many different things as possible. Sometimes groups are a little less into alcohol than others, so the tours itinerary will change everyday. Sometimes all 5 venues are alcohol related, where as some are only 1 or 2.
Because everything is relatively close to one another, there are certain moments where even the group can be split up. Across the road from the winery is a gin place. Across the road from the chocolate place is a winery..etc... So you get complete freedom throughout the day.
Of course, however, if we have a group that are happy to put their faith in us and are not too bothered we have a default itinerary that we like to go through. Generally speaking the day would be the following...
- Wine tasting at a scenic winery (Helen and Joeys Estate)
- 1 Smaller, boutique winery that also does an incredible apple cider (Yering Farm Wines)
- A restaurant, 'Quarters', which is located at Huberts Estate, one of the largest wineries in the Yarra Valley. Here you would get complete freedom of what you order for lunch. Lunch is not included in the price and this would be at your own expense on the day. Also here is an indigenous art museum.
-1 Gin distillery where we have a paddle/flight of Gins (Four Pillars)
-1 Chocolate tasting of 10-12 chocolates (Yarra Valley Chocolataire)
- Incredible views the entire time.
Each place has tastings of 5-6 wines/gins which are all included in the price. The only additional price is lunch.
All of this is done in a fun, social, laid back and non-pretentious way. This isn't a tour for people that take themselves too seriously. We want to inject a lot of fun into what can tend to be a bit of a rigid and structured tour. This isn't a tour, more like a road trip with mates!