Photographer: James Lauritz
A hidden gem nestled at the bottom of the boutique Pyrenees Wine Region in north west Victoria and straddling the Avoca River, Avoca is located an easy drive from both the Grampians and Goldfields regions. This surprising town has been around since the 1850s and offers old world charm with a wide main street packed with top notch eateries, bakeries and quirky gift shops.
Immediately inviting, the Avoca Hotel is more than a typical country pub. A makeover in 2010 has given the venue and sophisticated edge but it retains its country hotel feel. The menu has a focus on local ingredients and includes dishes such as whole local rainbow trout baked with fennel, thyme and Taltarni Pyrenees verjus, or marinated kangaroo fillet with macadamia nut scordalia. The pride of the owners is obvious from the friendly customer service to the many awards on the walls. 115 High Street, Avoca, +61 3 5465 3018
Albion est 1868
A wine and tapas bar in the main street and housed inside another stunning heritage building. Casual and affordable yet quality fare which continues to impress locals and visitors alike. Typical Spanish tapas dishes and a great wine list are enjoyed surrounded by the quirky décor and antiques, many of which are for sale. 116 High Street, Avoca, +61 3 5465 3880
Warrenmang Vineyard and Resort
Local Yabbies, berries, cheese, rabbit, hare and trout are some of the regular ingredients featured at Warrenmang Vineyard Restaurant which sits high above the vineyards offering views of the distant purple Pyrenees mountains. The restaurant’s regional wine list has been commended for its excellent range of the best of Pyrenees Wines dating back as far as 1980. The vineyard also offers cottage accommodation for those wanting to take their time and relax. 188 Mountain Creek Rd, Moonambel, +61 3 5467 2233
Dalywhinnie Eagles Nest
The Eagles Nest sits a short walk up the hill from Dalwhinnie’s cellar door and winery – one of the region’s most awarded and respected wineries. The self-catering house was built in 1979 and retains its retro feel but with all the comforts a visitor would expect including an open fire and large dining area. Set on the brow of a hill amongst natural bush land, Eagles Nest offers sweeping vistas of the Pyrenees ranges and guaranteed kangaroo sightings as they hop through the rows of grapevines at sunset. Perfect for one or two families or small groups. 448 Taltarni Road, Moonambel, 61 3 54 672 388
Avoca Cottages offers fully self-contained one and two bedroom cottages with large kitchen and living areas accommodation in Victoria’s historic Pyrenees wine region. These well presented, clean and luxurious cottages feature a heated bathroom and split air conditioning, massage chairs, Nespresso machine, outdoor barbecues with alfresco dining area. Free passes to the adjacent 18 hole golf course and lawn bowls are available for all guests. 33 Napier Street, Avoca, +61 3 5465 3677
Eco-Luxe @ Mount Avoca
Situated in the picturesque Mount Avoca vineyard and olive grove, Eco-Luxe @ Mount Avoca offers three self-contained luxury lodges with picture-postcard views. Perfect for couples seeking a romantic getaway and for those looking for peace and tranquillity. Breakfast is included, as is a complimentary voucher to appreciate the wines at the cellar door. Moates Lane, via Vinoca Road, Avoca, +61 3 5465 3282
Join the merry throng of race-goers at the Avoca Shire Turf Club for the Avoca Cup (15 October 2016) or the Mount Avoca Anzac Day Races in April. It is well known as one of the best country meets in the state and is fun for all the family. There is even camping available next to the race course and a big communal bonfire creating a jovial evening. 307 Racecourse Road, Avoca, +61 3 5465 3231
With over 25 cellar doors to choose from, Avoca’s wine region offers the full range of cool climate wines in the area, from refreshing sparkling varietals to full-bodied reds. Highlights include the sparkling wines of Blue Pyrenees Estate, especially the sparkling Shiraz, the amazingly diverse collection at Taltarni Vineyard, plus, Redbank Winery, Mount Avoca Wines, Dalwhinnie Vineyard and Warrenmang Vineyard and Resort.