2014 Melbourne Food & Wine Festival highlights regional Victoria
by Shamoli Dutt


The Melbourne Food and Wine Festival (28 February-16 March) will move to events in regional Victoria for the final weekend of the Festival (14- 16 March) and will celebrate the 2014 theme of water.

Following two weeks of the Festival spilling down laneways, running along Melbourne streets and over urban waterways, the Festival will pack its bags and host more than 70 unforgettable events in Regional Victoria.

Throughout Regional Weekend experience first-hand produce fresh from the land in which it was grown, wine tastings during vintage, boutique fairs and markets, relaxed family picnics, and much more.

The weekend begins with 22 regional “World’s Longest Lunches” taking place simultaneously on 14 March at locations including Ballarat and at 1460m on Mt Baw Baw.

The Festival’s famed outdoor MasterClass experience moves to the Bellarine Peninsula with a spectacular feast at Campbell Point House for 50 guests. The festival includes fly fishing and fish smoking workshops plus hands-on mussel and oyster demonstrations.

Visitors will also get the chance to hunt for truffles at Picnic in the Truffle Patch (Goldfields); marvel at an after-dark tour of Lorne’s Sculpture Biennale at Lorne’s Twilight Bush Picnic (Great Ocean Road); and enjoy a dinner under the stars followed by an enchanting carriage ride at Feast of the Full Moon (Mornington Peninsula).

The weekend will feature Victoria's finest wine during vintage. This includes Ellender Estate Winery’s Sparkling Wine; Behind the Scenes Winemaking at Montalto Winery (Mornington Peninsula) and tasting local wine and brews at the Pyrenees River Festival.

Other regional festival delights include Yarra Valley Chocolaterie & Ice Creamery’s Ice Cream Party; Catch & Cook – Yabby Expedition (Goldfields) and tastings at the Goods Shed Harvest Festival in Wodonga (The Murray).

There’s a choice of 17 of the regions’ most famed restaurants offering the signature $40 lunch special with Regional Restaurant Express. They include L'Osteria of Ellender Estate (Glenlyon), Scorched (Torquay), Fork to Fork (Dromana), Bella Vedere (Coldstream) and Jindivick Harvest Kitchen in Gippsland.

Details: Visit melbournefoodandwine.com.au

by Shamoli Dutt - Austguide Travel News Editor