Between the Yarra Valley and the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria is home to some of Australia’s marquee wine regions. And although these two big players lay claim to the lion’s share of Victoria’s best wineries, there are great places to try all across the state.

From quirky and historic wineries in the Grampians, to Goulburn Valley stalwarts to newer entrants that lay on Melbourne’s doorstep; Victoria is peppered with wineries to try. Some have world-class restaurants and outlooks, some have cellar doors whose tastings have extra-generous pours, and some just have owners with a great yarn to spin.

To be clear, this isn’t a guide to the best Victorian wines – these are our favourite wineries to visit, maybe for just a tasting, or maybe for something more involved such as a long lunch or an overnight stay.

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Paringa Estate

This stalwart winery has some of the oldest vines on the Mornington Peninsula, and some of the most impressive dining.

44 Paringa Road, Red Hill South
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TarraWarra Estate

Head chef Mark Ebbels brings wild creativity and an infectious passion for farming to the Yarra Valley winery.

311 Healesville-Yarra Glen Road, Yarra Glen
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Best’s Wines

This family-run vineyard has been operating since the 1860s, making it one of the oldest wineries in the country. Riesling, chardonnay, pinot noir and dolcetto are all grown here, but Best’s is renowned for its shiraz, which is among the finest in Australia. Don’t leave without a tour of the historic hand-dug cellar.

111 Bests Road, Great Western

Point Leo Estate

The most grandiose winery on the Mornington Peninsula, complete with its own sculpture park.

3649 Frankston-Flinders Road, Merricks

Port Phillip Estate

Some of the finest food, wine and views on the entire Mornington Peninsula, which is saying something.

263 Red Hill Road, Red Hill South
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Patricia's Table at Brown Brothers Winery

Brown Brothers is nothing if not restless and prolific. In addition to growing just about every popular grape, it also has the Kindergarten: a winery within a winery dedicated to experimental varietals and techniques. It was also the first vineyard in Australia to open an on-site restaurant: Patricia, which is one of Victoria’s best regional restaurants in its own right.

239 Milawa-Bobinawarrah Road, Milawa
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Oakridge Wines

Undulating hills planted with pinot noir and chardonnay, and a restaurant on par with the city’s best. This is a winery worth travelling for.

864 Maroondah Highway, Coldstream

Mitchelton Winery

Stunning architecture and award-winning rieslings, less than two hours north of Melbourne.

470 Mitchellstown Road, Nagambie

Balgownie Estate

Bendigo’s oldest vineyard specialises in cabernet sauvignon and shiraz.

46 Hermitage Road, Maiden Gully
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Innocent Bystander

This bar, restaurant and wine shop is the public face of Innocent Bystander wines. Stop by here to try the label’s signature moscato, or – if you’d like to try more – opt for a tasting paddle of wines poured straight from the barrel. There’s also beer, cider and crowd-pleasing food such as pizza and hearty helpings of paella.

334 Maroondah Highway, Healesville
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Bress Wine, Cider and Produce

Biodynamic wine tastings and long lunches among the barrels.

3894 Harmony Way, Harcourt

Boomtown Winery Co-op

At this co-op winery near the centre of Castlemaine, two local winemakers have joined forces to make vino under their own label. Over the years they’ve attracted other young winemakers, so Boomtown’s become something of an incubator for talented makers. Come here to try the adventurous drops, have a toastie and listen to a record.

The Mill 9 Walker Street, Castlemaine

Dal Zotto Trattoria

Come for the prosecco, stay for a long lunch. And maybe a siesta.

4861 Wangaratta-Whitfield Road, Whitfield
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Chrismont

This family-run vineyard started in the 1950s, when founder Arnold Pizzini emigrated from Northern Italy. Proseccos are understandably the highlight here. But a range of varietals from France, Germany and an excellent Spanish tempranillo are also worthy of star billing. The Sicilian-inspired restaurant and its panoramic views make an ideal setting for a long lunch.

251 Upper King River Road, Cheshunt
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Pimpernel Wines

A small, family-run winery named for the pimpernel flowers that grow amongst the vines. The grapes are dry-grown and hand-picked, and the family bottle and label every wine themselves. This is one of the most intimate – and unhurried – tastings you can have in the Yarra Valley.

6 Hill Road, Coldstream

Seville Estate

A restaurant championing homegrown produce and world-class wine, in a beautiful setting.

65 Linwood Road, Seville

La Cantina Cellar Door

This King Valley winery specialises in Italian varietals including barbera, sangiovese and pinot grigio (curveball: saperavi, a Georgian grape). These skin contact, unfiltered, wild-fermented, preservative and additive-free wines were “natural” before natural wines were a thing.

54 Honeys Lane, King Valley

Rare Hare

A warm, communal restaurant next door to Jackalope.

166 Balnarring Road, Merricks North

Montalto

After retiring, John Mitchell started growing and making wine as a hobby. Things quickly grew out of hand. Now, Montalto encompasses seven vineyards and more than 30 acres of vines. As a retirement project, it’s unquestionably a failure: Mitchell and his wife Wendy are busier than ever. By every other metric though, Montalto is a resounding success – it’s one of Red Hill’s must-visits.

33 Shoreham Road, Red Hill South
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Foxey’s Hangout

A day at Foxey’s Hangout is as laidback and easygoing as the wine it produces. It’s set on a spacious estate with an open kitchen, cosy dining room and sunny outdoor deck. The varied share plate-focused menu is a good match for the easy-drinking wines here.

795 White Hill Road, Red Hill

Cape Horn Vineyard

A picturesque winery with plantings of chardonnay, marsane and zinfandel.

486 Stewarts Bridge Road , Echuca

Nazaaray Estate

What this winery lacks in size, it more than makes up for in character. Whether it’s the quaint, well-appointed guesthouses (made from reconverted 1930s train carriages) or the idiosyncratic pinot noirs and pinot gris – naturally fermented with wild yeast, then hand-macerated – a visit here is sure to stand out.

266 Meakins Road, Flinders

Lightfoot & Sons

The long-awaited cellar door of this respected vineyard is now open.

717 Wy Yung-Calulu Road, Wy Yung

Nicholson River Winery

East Gippsland doesn’t have as rich a wine history as other parts of Victoria – but Nicholson River Winer feels much older than a winery founded in the late ’70s. Part of that comes down to the wine: mainly low-yield French classics, produced traditionally with minimal intervention. The rest comes from the setting: a secluded, bucolic hilltop locale with sweeping views of the Nicholson River.

57 Liddells Road, Nicholson

Moorooduc Estate

One of the oldest vineyards on the Peninsula is also one of its most elevated: it's eighty metres above sea level.

501 Derril Road, Moorooduc

Heathcote Winery

Hearty lunches and wine tastings in a cosy historic setting.

Food & Wine Bar 183-185 High Street , Heathcote

Sanguine Estate

A small family-run vineyard that consistently wins awards for its shiraz and sells out of its lighter wines.

77 Shurans Lane , Heathcote

Flynn's Wines

This winery has a narrow focus – growing mainly shiraz, a sangiovese here, a vermentino there – but that’s its strength. There’s not a bewildering array of wines to taste and try, just a handful of great options. It’s the same story in the kitchen, which focuses on grazing platters and comfort food that gets out of its own way.

Bistro 29 Lewis Road, Heathcote

Passing Clouds Winery

Rockpool and Attica have bought this winery out of entire vintages.

Cellar Door 30 Roddas Lane, Musk

Grampians Estate

Break up the drive from Halls Gap to Dunkeld with a cheese plate and a glass of sparkling shiraz.

1477 Western Highway, Great Western

Stillwater at Crittenden Estate

Crittenden, the vineyard upon which Stillwater restaurant is situated, is renowned for its chardonnays and pinot noirs (but also does cracking sparkling and Spanish wines). It’s a good match for Stillwater, which offers up a confident, well-rounded menu that combines winery restaurant favourites with more esoteric dishes (such as house-made beetroot pasta).

25 Harrison Road, Dromana
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T’Gallant

This winery is a great visit. There’s something for everyone. Although T’Gallant specialises in pinot grigio, there’s a full stable of wines to try, including rose, pinot noir and all the other usual suspects. The matching pizzas are best eaten in the huge Italian-inspired courtyard, with views out over the vines .

1385 Mornington-Flinders Road, Main Ridge

Polperro

A quintessential Mornington Peninsula food and wine experience.

150 Red Hill Road, Red Hill

Brandy Creek Estate

At this eclectic estate, function rooms are decked out to evoke the opulence of Versailles, some parts of the dining room and tasting area have been lashed with grungy streaks of spray paint, and the menu is Spanish (with the odd Sri Lankan night to throw you off). Wines? Equally multifarious, with all kinds of varietals from around the Mediterranean.

570 Buln Buln Road, Drouin East
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The Wine Farm

A cosy cottage and winery set among seven acres of vines. The cellar door is open all summer.

370 Koonwarra-Inverloch Rd, Koonwarra

Narkoojee Winery

This winery specialises in French wines: chardonnay, pinot noir, cab sav – all the blockbuster drops. The restaurant, however, takes its cues from Italy. It’s about as classic a duo as they come. Pair it with the setting, which offers views of vines out to the horizon, and you have a winning combination.

220 Francis Road, Glengarry North

Ripplebrook Winery

This small and charming winery is one of West Gippsland’s best options if you’re after a lazy long lunch. The kitchen – which mainly cooks with what’s grown on the veggie patch – makes tapas, antipasti, pizzas and hearty bowls of gnocchi. To drink, there’s a great mix of red and white wines.

2755 Westernport Road, Ripplebrook
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Levantine Hill

From the helipad to the high-profile architect, no expense has been spared at Levantine Hill.

882 Maroondah Highway, Coldstream
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Stumpy Gully

A winery and restaurant that makes some of the Peninsula's best pinot noirs.

1247 Stumpy Gully Road, Moorooduc

Arundel Farm Estate Winery

A small winery operating out of a bluestone with views over the Melbourne CBD.

321 Arundel Road, Keilor
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Marnong Estate

A small winery just a 15-minute drive from Melbourne airport. Why not pop in for a tasting before your flight?

2335 Mickleham Road, Mickleham

Craiglee Vineyard

A small winery that produces some of Victoria's best shiraz.

785 Sunbury Road, Sunbury

Goona Warra Vineyard

A historic winery that's just a one hour train ride from the city.

790 Sunbury Road, Sunbury