Produce to Platter: Geelong and surrounding regions by Jonette George and Daniele Wilton

Be inspired by one of Victoria's top wine and food regions

By Sara Schwarz
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Produce to Platter – Geelong and Surrounding Regions

Produce to Platter – Geelong and Surrounding Regions


Having tackled the Sunshine Coast and Mornington Peninsula, publishing dynamos Jonette George and Daniele Wilton, have raised the bar again for this, their third book, Produce to Platter: Geelong and surrounding regions.

This dynamic mother/daughter team have had more than their share of challenges in recent years, however instead of being beaten, they have focused their passion and energy into creating regional food and wine books full of rich imagery and inspiration.

Produce to Platter: Geelong and surrounding regions invites you to glimpse behind the scenes and celebrate the many individuals who have been quietly working away to create great wines, iconic restaurants and tantalizing produce across the region.

Covering such a large geographical area isn’t easy, so this book focuses upon the six sub-regions that make up Geelong and surrounds in turn;

  • Gateway (from Werribee to Geelong)
  • Geelong region
  • Moorabool Valley
  • Bellarine Peninsula
  • Surf Coast and
  • The Otways

As per the format of previous books, Produce to Platter: Geelong and surrounding regions features editorial, recipes and images from each participating business who in return agree to purchase and onsell a certain number of the books once published.

The indepth introduction provides an excellent history of the region from the traditional owners, the Wathaurong people, through to the history of white settlement to modern day which makes for some fascinating reading to a non-local such as myself.

In the following pages, the main produce of the region – wine, abalone, beef and lamb, berries, bread, cheese, mussels, olives, pork and tomatoes – are all discussed in turn, giving us a feel for what lies in the pages ahead and what to look out for when visiting.

The pages covering the history of Geelong's wine industry (provided by the local wine association) is an excellent summary of the rise, fall and rise again of wine production in the area to where it sits proudly today as one of Australia’s premier cool climate regions.

Historically, wine was first produced here in the 1840s and by the 1860s Geelong was the most significant wine producing region in Australia. However the arrival of the dreaded phylloxera pest resulted in all vines being pulled in the 1870s. It wasn’t until a century later that the industry began to re-establish itself with a number of now high profile wine producers establishing vines across the region.

Having enjoyed previous Produce to Platter releases, I feel this is their best yet – the images are even more captivating and the text and layout are clearer and easier to read than in previous editions. The inclusion of little additional features such as a suggested wine tour of Moorabool Valley and an article on the famous Bells Beach all add depth.

Never keen to sit still, and perhaps in need of a bit of city time, Jonette and Daniele have a Laneways and Rooftops publication in the pipeline, focusing upon inner Melbourne’s favourite haunts and hidden gems.

Produce to Platter: Geelong and surrounding regions (HC) is edited and published by Jonette George and Daniele Wilton (Smudge Publishing), RRP A$49.99 plus postage from  It is also available for sale from all of the included businesses and local bookstores.




  • Geelong and Bellarine Peninsula (VIC)
  • Otways (VIC)

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January 28th, 2011
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