Produce to Platter: Yarra Valley and The Dandenongs by Daniele Wilton and Jonette George

Don't visit the Yarra Valley without this book

By Laura McKinnon
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Yarra Valley, Victoria - vineyard scene
Yarra Valley wineries
Domaine Chandon, Yarra Valley, Victoria


In this latest instalment of the Produce to Platter series Daniele Wilton and Jonette George take you on an informative journey through the Yarra Valley and Dandenongs regions.

Complemented with warm and heartening photography by Charlie Brown, the regions are brought to life in a vivid manner. Some of the photography is downright beautiful – the photos of winery dogs are a particular highlight.

This is familiar territory for me as I started my wine career in the Yarra Valley; it is a region close to my heart and one I know to hold a treasure trove of experiences for visitors of all types.

Co-editor of The Age Good Food Guide for fifteen years, Rita Erlich, introduces Produce to Platter: Yarra Valley and The Dandenongs. She helps to shine a light on the treasures you will find in both the region and in the book while recommending ways you might plan your visit to ensure you get the most out of it.

Key features of the guide include a history of the region spanning from information on the ancient aboriginal custodians of the area to more recent histories of the key historic properties, a basic map of the region with a list of entries that feature in the book, an index of recipes including photographs of each dish, information on the regional food group and its members, cooking schools and a summary of major events.

The majority of Produce to Platter: Yarra Valley and The Dandenongs is made up of detailed listings of wineries and produce providers placed in alphabetical order for quick and easy reference.

The listings are an easy read and give relevant information about each venue; from foods and wines on offer through to the best seasons in which to purchase fruit from an orchard or where to go to buy free range pork.

One such listing is that of the Buxton Trout and Salmon Farm; an enduring feature of the region. It is a lovely place for a family day out, visitors are guaranteed to catch a fish and if you would like to cook it there and then barbeque facilities are available. Staff at the farm can even clean your catch for you making the experience even more enjoyable. 

Other well recognised listings include De Bortoli, Domaine Chandon and Victoria's first vineyard, Yering Station, all of which offer high quality visitor experiences.

Many of the listings are complemented by recipes provided by the resident chef. Of particular note is the Cunlife and Waters Slow-cooked Lamb Kasoundi  and the Essenza Saffron Poached Pear Polenta Cake.  And if you are in any doubt as to what to drink with your freshly cooked meal check out the recommendation at the bottom of the page.

Overall Produce to Platter: Yarra Valley and The Dandenongs is a beautifully produced and presented guide full of wineries and venues. No matter if you visit regularly, or if you are intending on visiting for the first time, this guide will ensure you get the most out of your visit – likely leading you down a path more decadent, revealing, interesting and full of flavours and sites that may have eluded you otherwise.


Produce to Platter: Yarra Valley and The Dandenongs by Jonette George and Daniele Wilton (Smudge Publishing), RRP A$34.99 from  It is also available for sale from all of the included businesses and local bookstores.


  • Yarra Valley (Wine) (VIC)
  • Yarra Valley, Dandenongs and the Ranges (VIC)

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December 11th, 2012
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