Episode 05: 17 March
This week the team takes a behind-the-scenes tour of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, the hottest musical in Melbourne. Shane finds great places in the Otway Region and Glen heads for the Mornington Peninsula for a winery tour of Red Hill. Meanwhile, Brodie travels north west of Melbourne for a fabulous accommodation experience at Amazing Grace and a baking lesson at nearby Lavendula to learn how to make their ever-popular lavender scones.
Amazing Grace and Lavandula
Charming Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm is located just outside Hepburn Springs. The onsite cafe, La Trattoria, offers a small, select and seasonal menu but the highlight has to be their famed lavender scones. Eat outdoors under the trees, or sit inside in beautiful rustic surrounds.
When it comes to time to rest your head, there's a luxury adobe in Hepburn Springs that's just perfect for a break. Amazing Grace is a three bedroom house that happily accommodates between two and six people. Designed for relaxation, luxury and exploring, it's fabulous for girls' weekends, a group get-together or a romantic stay for two.
Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm
350 Hepburn-Newstead Road, Shepherd's Flat
Ph 03 5476 4393
1 Lakeside Drive, Hepburn Springs
Ph 0411 035 000
Red Hill Wineries: Veraison at Bluestone Lane and Yabby Lake Vineyard
The Mornington Peninsula is heaven for wine lovers and Bluestone Lane in Balnarring is no exception. The vineyard's restaurant draws inspiration from Melbourne's old bluestone laneways and uses only the freshest local produce. Throw in award-winning wines and expansive vineyard views and Bluestone Lane makes the ideal venue for everything from a romantic lunch to the perfect peninsula wedding.
Yabby Lake Vineyard in Moorooduc, with its exceptional vino and ripping views of Mount Martha and Port Phillip Bay, is another very popular peninsula winery. Their cellar door is the best place to get acquainted with their wines and if you feel like making a day of it, you won't go hungry. The cellar door serves up some delicious food, such as homemade terrines, grazing plates and marinated lamb fillet.
Bluestone Lane Vineyard & Veraison Restaurant
269 Myers Road, Balnarring
Ph 03 5989 7081
Yabby Lake Vineyard
112 Tuerong Road, Moorooduc
Ph 03 5974 3729
Forrest Brewing Company and Bed on Beattie
Driving through the windy roads of the Otways can be dizzy work. Need a break along the way? Look no further than the Forrest Brewing Company. To get there, travel through the small township of Forrest via the inland route to Apollo Bay. All beers are brewed onsite and visitors can see the magic happen through the viewing window.
Head through the towering trees of the Otways towards the coast for a luxury resting place. Situated on a secluded hilltop just outside of Apollo Bay, A Bed on Beattie offers self-contained accommodation, an expansive sun deck with panoramic ocean views and a delightful cottage garden.
Forrest Brewing Company
Forrest-Apollo Bay Road, Forrest
Ph 03 5236 6170
A Bed On Beattie
50 Beattie Lane, Wongarra
Ph 0438 37 0011
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Rebecca heads out with Chitty Chitty Bang Bang stars David Hobson and Rachael Beck to show off some of their favourite Melbourne haunts. First up is Bella Sistas on Toorak Road, a great spot for breakfast and lunch. Sample their muffin of the day and fabulous coffee. Next stop is the Melbourne Supper Club. Located above The European restaurant in Spring Street, the Supper Club has long been the spot for a post-show drink. From here, Rebecca takes a backstage tour of the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang production set. This enchanting musical about a flying car first debuted on stage at the London Palladium in 2002.
Bella Sistas Espresso
970 Toorak Road, Camberwell
Ph 03 9889 4248
The Melbourne Supper Club
161 Spring Street, Melbourne
Ph 03 9654 6300
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
Her Majesty's Theatre
219 Exhibition Street, Melbourne
Ph 03 8643 3300
Vignettes − Tuck's Ridge Winery and the Ridge Organic Food Store and Café
Tuck's Ridge Winery in Red Hill on the Mornington Peninsula is just over an hour's drive from Melbourne. It is without doubt one of the most picturesque wineries in the area and a popular wedding and function venue. Overlooking the vineyard and right next to the cellar door you'll find the cafe and restaurant. Here you can sample the delicious fare whipped up by head chef Stuart McKeon along with their award-winning wines.
At the Ridge Organic Food Store and Café in the small Otway town of Beech Forest their approach to food, and life, is simple… Keep it fresh, keep in local and make it tasty! Situated along the Otway Harvest Trail, they have many fantastic food producers at their fingertips and ingredients from biodynamic farmers are used in all their dishes. When the hills are not covered in mist there are usually magnificent valley views to take in from the deck.
Tuck's Ridge Winery
37 Red Hill-Shoreham Road, Red Hill
Ph 03 5989 8660
Ridge Organic Food Store and Café
20 Gardner Street, Beech Forest
Ph 03 5235 9273
Tarra Festival, Yarram
If you're off to the country over the coming weeks, the Tarra Festival in Yarram looks like the place to be! So come along and don't miss out on some of Gippsland's biggest and most popular events.
Where: Yarram, Gippsland
When: 29 March 2013 - 1 April 2013
Dinner and Dance Train, Puffing Billy
Book now for a dinner experience with a difference. The Dinner & Dance Train offers a fun night of dancing and delicious dining aboard the heritage steam train, Puffing Billy.
Where: Belgrave, Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges
When: 27 Apr 2013, 25 May 2013, 22 Jun 2013
Avoca Music Festival, Pyrenees
Next weekend head out west to enjoy live blues and musical breakfast fun at this year's Avoca Music Festival.
Where: Avoca, Grampians
When: March 22–24 2013