It’s no secret that the Yarra Valley is home to some of Victoria’s best wineries. It’s a go-to destination for wine tours, long-lunches and special occasions, with big players like Chandon, Hubert Estate and Rochford consistently appearing on weekend hit lists.

Not to be overlooked is Helen and Joey Estate, a picturesque 200-acre estate with a working vineyard established by owners Helen Xu and Joey Zeng in 2010. Now, the duo have opened Re’em, a venue encompassing a restaurant, an event space, a relocated cellar door and a boutique hotel.

Culinary consultant Mark Ebbels (a former Tarrawarra Estate head chef, who has also worked in the UK’s Fat Duck development kitchen) and head chef Abe Yang (ex-Levantine Hill, Tarrawarra Estate) are in charge of food at both the restaurant and cellar door. They’ve created a menu inspired by the owners’ Chinese heritage, taking particular influence from the Jinhua region where Helen grew up.

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Take a seat in a booth by the window with uninterrupted views of the lake and vineyards. On weekends there’s a set menu with the option to add matched estate wines, and it’s an à la carte offering if you visit during the week.

Expect snacks like spring onion pancakes and lamb belly skewers with house-made sriracha to start, followed by entrees like citrus-cured kingfish with coriander and chilli. Mains might include 48-hour barbeque pork belly or woodfired Buxton Farm trout. And to finish, there’s the crowd-favourite black sesame sponge cake with house-made strawberry sorbet, lemon and tarragon.

For something more casual, head to the cellar door for a snack menu featuring shiitake dumplings and Hainan chicken with puffed rice. Or build your own picnic basket with a selection of City Larder products, including pork rillettes and duck-and-prune terrine, that you can enjoy on the balcony or down by the lake.

Downstairs at the cellar door, a sculpture wall by Melbourne glass artist Mark Douglass and a garden of indoor ferns lead to an intimate 12-seat private dining room. Next door is the barrel room, where group wine tastings are on offer.

The boutique Re’em hotel has 16 rooms, including a dedicated bridal suite. Upstairs, larger suits come complete with private balconies, king beds and deep-soak bathtubs overlooking the vineyard. Each of the downstairs rooms has its own private garden patio that leads out to the vineyard.

Look for the downstairs fishpond and the crabapple trees planted by the pair and Xu’s mum. Xu says they’re a “nostalgic reminder” of her childhood.

Re’em Yarra Valley
12–14 Spring Lane, Gruyere
1800 989 463

Hours:
Restaurant
Thur, Sun & Mon 12pm–5pm
Fri & Sat 12pm–5pm; 5.30pm–9.30pm

Cellar Door
Oct to Apr, daily 11am–6pm
May to Sep, daily 10am–5pm

helenandjoeyestate.com.au/re-em-yarra-valley
@helenandjoeyestate