If you are thinking about taking a break this winter to visit Victoria’s pre-eminent wine region (only an hour’s drive from the Melbourne CBD), I strongly recommend dropping by Balgownie Estate Vineyard Resort and Spa. This outstanding resort received the prestigious hotel industry award for “Best Regional Accommodation of the Year” at last month’s 2015 Tourism Accommodation Australia (VIC) Accommodation Awards for Excellence, and the on-site restaurant offers a marvellous dining experience. Executive Chef Graham Taute and his team at Rae’s Restaurant (the on-site dining venue) have a real passion for using fresh local ingredients, and incorporate the best of local produce into their menu. I recently had the wonderful opportunity of sampling their new winter menu for 2015.
(prawn, scallop, salmon, white fish, herb oil)
Creamy hearty comfort food with a substantial amount of seafood in it. Utterly delicious and perfect for winter.
Hand Rolled Potato Gnocchi
(smoked ocean trout, fennel, minted pea puree, Balgownie Estate chardonnay cream)
The gnocchi was soft and fluffy, while the sauce was smooth and flavourful.
Vine Smoked Chargrilled Boneless Rib-eye
(with chips, green beans, Bordelaise sauce)
A solid steak with very tasty Bordelaise sauce.
Beer Battered Fish of the day
(with smoked paprika dusted chips, baby leaves, celeriac remoulade)
Light and crispy batter, moist steaming fish, crunchy golden chips. Simple and satisfying.
With a delicious new menu, roaring open fire and spectacular views of the surrounding Dandenong Ranges and Yarra Valley, Rae’s Restaurant is certainly worth a visit this winter.
1309 Melba Highway, Yarra Glen
*Disclaimer: I dined as a guest of Balgownie Estate and Tyrrell PR.