Today I took a short day trip to the northeast of Melbourne to the Yarra River Valley. The Yarra River starts in the Yarra Ranges and flows west for 242km through the broad Yarra River Valley and Melbourne until it reaches Port Phillip Bay. The Yarra River Valley is known for its food and wine production and in recent years beer and cider have become popular exports from the area. Today my goal was to visit a brewery and cidery or two to get some samples for when Tucker and Alison are here. I also read about the Yarra Valley Dairy which is making award-winning cheeses, so I put that address in Sheila (GPS) too.
The first brewery I stopped at ended up being only a bar/restaurant and they weren’t open quite yet when I arrived so I continued on to the Dairy. This place had a cheese counter within a shop and cafe. One of the employees told me about their cheeses and let me sample about 5 of them. After walking around a bit in the shop I decided one of their cheese plates would make a nice lunch. The cheese plate included 4 different cheeses, a fruit relish and a plate with bread and crackers~way more than I could eat. So they wrapped up all the extra and Jim and I will have it as an appetizer before dinner tonight. I also bought a couple of their cheeses for when Tucker and Alison are here.
I plugged in the address of the White Rabbit Brewery and Cidery in Healesvillle and easily found my way there. Success~a mixed 6-pack of ciders and beer! The guy working there asked where I was from (a very common occurrence!) and then told me about his trip to Oregon where he has family living.
The last brewery I tried to visit was in Yarra Glen and I struck out there too as a hand-made sign in the window indicated they were closed for the day. I had a nice drive and anytime I am out on the road, I increase my feelings of confidence about driving down here on the “other” side of the road. Plus I enjoyed the scenery, when I was brave enough to take my eyes off the road!
Click here for a link to a youtube video that Jim took on top of Mt. Graham. It shows the beauty of the area as well as how hard the wind was blowing. The 2 beaches that can be seen are Hazards Beach and Wine Glass beach. Enjoy!
And now for the contest!
We bought these 2 furry friends at the Queen Victoria Market to live on the bed in our guest room, but they need names. That’s where you come in. If you have ideas for the name of the kangaroo and the koala put them in a comment on this post. We will accept ideas until next Wednesday, May 29th at noon, Melbourne time. Tucker, Alison, Jim and I will choose the names from your ideas, unless one of them submit ideas, and then they will be out of the deciding process! The winner will get a small Australian souvenir~and it will not be Vegamite! So take a good look at those cute stuffed friends and send in your name ideas! Good Luck!
Before I headed out this morning I went for a walk to off-set all this time I’d be sitting in the car. I walked to a nearby park that we had seen from the tram, but had not explored. Faulkner Park is next to a grammar school and there were a couple of classes out in the park. One class looked like it could have been a Physical Education class! This park also included some soccer fields, a few tennis courts and a cafe. There was one sidewalk with these beautiful, old trees lining each side. I’ll have to look them up in my tree guide.
Here is last night’s sunset from our balcony: