Orlando Marzo recommends

Victoria's top tipples

Visit Victoria chats with World Bartender of the Year Orlando Marzo who takes some time out after his win to lift the lid on his favourite Victorian tipples.

Formerly of London’s renowned Milk and Honey and now head bartender at Lûmé, Marzo can now be found creating beverages that match the South Melbourne restaurant’s multidisciplinary approach.".

Maidenii, Harcourt

Central Victorian winemaker Gilles Lapalus and Gin Palace bartender Shaun Byrne have teamed up to create a vermouth. The pair are leading the aperitif’s revival with Maidenii in high demand in trendy bars and restaurants, led by the popular cocktails negroni and americano. The fortified wine is produced from vineyards near Heathcote and wild harvested herbs and plants gathered from the gardens and paddocks of central Victoria.

Holly's Garden, King Valley

The cool-climate Whitlands high plateau region of Victoria is home to Holly's Garden. Grown at 750 metres in the deep volcanic soils, the winery produces a voluptuous pinot gris and artisan sparkling wines. The cool evenings allow the vines to 'rest' at night and delays the accumulation of sugar whilst retaining acidity and building flavour.'

Patrick Sullivan Wine, Gippsland

Located in the Strzelecki Ranges, Patrick Sullivan Wines are produced biodynamically with minimal intervention. The small-batch wine label is a true reflection of the region and its natural environment. The wines gain their character by maturing in 100% Australian ceramic barrels. Hogget Kitchen in Warragul acts as the unofficial cellar door.

‘I can't say which winery is my favourite because it's like picking between your kids. Pinor noir and chardonnay are the benchmark of Victoria wines. When people come to the restaurant they want to drink local so we'll get them involved in a pinot from the Mornington Peninsula or the Yarra Valley. What's exciting is the number of small boutique producers that are using unconventional methods because it gives them a chance to be more adventurous,' says Marzo.

Hogget Kitchen
6 Farrington Close, Warragul

Starward Whisky, Port Melbourne

Created by Melbourne local David Vitale, Starward Whisky reflects his hometown, from its culture to its famed 'four seasons in a day' temperature swings. A modern Australian whisky, elementally matured for three 'Melbourne years' in Australian wine barrels, Starward draws on the vibrancy of big bold reds like shiraz and cabernet, as well as delicate notes in pinot and rosé. Visit the Port Melbourne based distillery for tasting, a tour or whisky masterclass.

'Starward is one of the most progressive distilleries in Australia and set the benchmark. Based in Port Melbourne, they're also the most local distillery. It's exciting because they want to express themselves and what an Australian whisky should be like,' says Marzo.

50 Bertie Street, Port Melbourne

St. Ronan's, Healesville

Found on a small farm just outside the town of Healesville in the Yarra Valley, St. Ronan's Cider is focused on making ciders that are unique in Australia and produced from locally sourced fruit. Their flagship cider, the methode traditionelle, is produced using the same labour-intensive method used to produce champagne and presented in a 750 ml bottle complete with cork and cage. The cellar door is hosted by Badger Creek Blueberry Farm and located in Healesville, just over an hour's drive from Melbourne.

‘Victoria grows 47% of apples and 80% of pears in Australia so we're living in an orchard. Harcourt has the original apple orchard planned shortly after the gold rush,' says Marzo.

Badger Creek Blueberry Farm
11 Garnook Grove, Badger Creek

La Sirène, Alphington

The inner-city Melbourne brewery creates modern day artisanal farmhouse-style beers with character and identity. After beginning as gypsy brewers in the Victorian Highlands, the brewery shifted to their own Urban Farmhouse Brewery next door to the Darebin Creek & National Park. La Sirène are 'farmhouse free stylers' blessed with naturally pure soft water and indigenous wild yeast within the brewery. They focus on producing New World Farmhouse beers in a house style with finesse, texture and above all crisp drinkability.

'La Sirène have a background in winemaking so they're approach to beers is incredible. They focus on wild fermentation so they're unconventional compared to what other breweries are doing. They produce very creative, versatile and aromatic beers with incredible structures, so their style of beer works well with food,' says Marzo.

2 Wingrove Street, Alphington

Mount Zero Mandarin Pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Grampians

The virgin olive oil is produced in the agrumato style of cold pressing halved mandarins and olives together which combines the fruity olive character with the zest of mandarin peel. The mandarin-pressed extra virgin olive oil is distilled to create a liqueur and mixed with champagne and green tea extract to create the popular Olive Oil Royale at Lûmé restaurant. 

3/2a Holmwood Road, Tottenham

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