All excited we get up to get sorted for our big wine tasting day today in the Yarra Valley.
Kathy kindly grabs the train with us and John drops us off at the station - they are both so good to us, we are so well looked after. We meet our group at the corner of Swanson and Flinders street by St. Paul's Cathedral. We are taken in a small mini bus to the Yarra Valley stopping first at the Yarra Station where we learn how to gurgle and inspect the wine - we are told we'll try over fifty wines today if we go for them all - we're not the spitting types, waste of good wine, so we'll see how it goes.
We try some reds and whites and can move onto sample more at the bar afterwards, it's interesting and Jacqs loving the light whites and rose Matts big on the intense reds so were both pleased there's plenty for us both to try.
We move on then to Balgownie station - this one is great - amazing views of the vineyards, it's approaching wine season so it's a busy time for the wineries. Jacq falls in love with a cuvée brute and Matts loving the Cabernet Merlot which is 70% cab 30% merlot. We decide to get a bottle of each to take back to the Porters to share with dinner tonight.
We stop here for lunch and Jacq has a chicken schnitzel with potataoes Matt opts for the braised beef stew, it's not bad but not amazing - middle of the road but sure the wine makes up for it!
We chat with a lot of Americans in our group they are mostly pretty suprised we're doing this so young - why wait eh!? Never know, we might run out of money and be back early but we'll give it a good go first is the motto. It does feel awkward at times, so we might invent a new story if people ask going forward, perhaps "yeah we're just on holiday" or "we're from here". Nahhh!
Jacq made the school boy error of wearing a light pink top and already there's evidence of wine and balsamic down it - useless! We move onto the chocolate factory, nice stop with some beautifully crafted chocolates, free samples go down well and we grab Helena a gift. We move onto a more traditional winery called Yerring Station it's beautifully rustic with the most amazing views of the valley and vineyards. Our favourite stop but sadly we're all shopped out on wine now and so just try a few more. We aim for our last stop at Kelly Brook station - real wedding type venue thank god for the good weather the views can really be appreciated. Jacqs been praying for cheese and low and behold we are presented wih a platter of goats, feta and cheddar cheeses wih crackers - all beautiful but we love the cheddar especially and grab a block to bring back.
All a bit knackered on the way back but it's been a great day, we call the Porters and John meets us at Strathmore station. Our last night is spent sipping vino and tucking into Kathys Spag Bol. Gonna miss these guys we've hit it off so well. Jacq tries to book a case wih our Virgin flight and add the guitar, they don't have thre facility online so we ring them and are really shocked to discover they want $120 per item - complete rip off!! We spend the night repacking and re-evaluating our luggage, settling on posting clothes for the cruise to Jacqs cousin Adam in San Fran and sending our memorabilia back to the UK. The rest of the clothes buffer the guitar and we hope to check in one item tomorrow with our back packs as carry ons - bloody Branson!!